We enjoy the finer things in life that combine beauty and space conveniently. This makes container gardening a natural addition to the patio. The benefits are plentiful and the work minimal. What you’re left with is an easily and quickly achieved burst of color. If you’re new to gardening, make container gardens your starting point. Even if you plant a traditional garden, container gardening is a worthy pursuit for its little effort and big results.
Wondering where to start? You’ll find lots of inspiration with a quick search on Pinterest. With your vision in mind, follow these steps for making it a reality:
Plan Your Space
Before you go out and begin purchasing, make a plan. How many pots do you want? What size should they be? Will you scatter them, or concentrate them in a particular location? Will you plant flowers, vegetables or herbs? Do you want a mix of flowers and foliage, or 100 percent petals? Do you want complementary colors or contrasting colors? Vining plants, as well as tall spindly plants or grasses, can make beautiful accents to your flowers. If you choose to plant vegetables, select ones that grow well in pots. Take into consideration the amount of sun the space gets, and what plants do well in the climate where you live.
Pick Your Pots
Picking the right pot for your garden goes beyond finding a style that fits with your home’s aesthetic. Vegetables need deeper pots than flowers and do best when they have room to breathe and grow. Ceramic pots may look better than the plastic or resin, but their porous nature will have you watering more often. Make sure your pots have drainage holes on the bottom to prevent overwatering. You’ll also want to make sure your pots style well together. Vary the heights and shapes – perhaps even the colors and finishes for an on-trend look.
Placing plants into containers isn’t difficult, but there are a few tricks of the trade. If you’re filling a large planter, you can put empty containers or rocks in the bottom of the planter to save on potting soil. This also helps with drainage.
On top of the filler material, you’ll add quality bagged potting soil and fill the pot nearly to the top. Then set your plants, still in their store containers, on top of the soil to identify the best arrangement before planting. When you’ve chosen your arrangement, simply dig a shallow well in the potting soil and place your plant in it. Fill in soil around the plant until the soil surface is even. Repeat with the remaining plants.
Maintaining your container garden is the easiest portion of the process. Water the plants every few days when it doesn’t rain. You should also remove the spent blooms or pinch back herbs periodically to stimulate new growth. If your plants don’t do well in your original location, move them to get more or less light, as needed.
Once everything is planted and staged on your deck or patio, you can begin enjoying the fruits of your labors. Be patient – it will take a few weeks before you’ll begin harvesting tomatoes or kale from your containers. During that time, enjoy watching your work take root, grow and blossom.
Instead of spending the season weeding gardens, you’ll be relaxing on the deck, enjoying summer breezes and surrounded by fresh blooms.
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