Thinking Outside The Pot


Time to think container gardening. Nothing new there, right? Plants, pot, color, done. Yeah, so I thought too. But my mind changed last spring. I had the pleasure to attend the Country Living Fair in Rhinebeck, N.Y., it was an outdoor festival of extraordinary events. Chic vendors; handmade, antique, trendy, classic, you name it. Best of all? A great line up of seminars.

It rained. Did I say it rained? It poured. It deluged. It tidal waved. Ok, maybe not that bad.  It was still enjoyable to attend, but the dry tents of seminars were really looked forward to! A seminar on container gardening? What could a seasoned gardener possibly glean that wasn’t already known about planting in containers? It was a dry tent, so I went. Well, let’s just say, my love affair with containers was renewed during this seminar aptly named  ‘Courageous Containers’. The speaker sure had me thinking outside of the proverbial pot. Seeing him in action, placing and replacing plants, using different textures, using houseplants with annuals and perennials, using water plants in antique urns….it was inspiring. Not only inspiring, I was reminded that container gardening, is FUN!

The key to how and why the speaker’s containers came together in a fabulous way, was due to the fact that everything he needed was right there. A huge selection of plants, a big table of soil, and the container. No guesswork. If it didn’t work, he pulled it out and tried something else. During our B.Y.O.C. event (see below for details), bring in YOUR container and we’ll help you fill it up in a fun way. There are so many awesome plants to choose from, and it’s so much easier to visualize your end results with your container on hand.

Here is a list of Do’s to consider while planning your 2014 container gardens:

Do know where you intend to put your container. Shade? Sun? Choosing plants is so much easier if you know the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, and your house faces which direction? Know how the sun travels over your home and property.

Do have fun with color. Do you want to compliment the colors of your home? Are you a monochromatic type of person? Or do you like contrasting colors?

Do choose upright and cascading plants. Different heights make your container more interesting.

Do go for instant gratification. Our seasons are so short. Why wait for your container to ‘fill in’ and look awesome by September?

Do plan on replacing your plants when they get tired. I’ve seen many container gardens that the commitment the owner had to finishing the season with them, was admirable, but alas, not so pretty. Container plants really perform, and sometimes need to be replaced mid season.

Do feed your containers. High performers need food to keep going!

Do water your containers. If it’s a sunny day, you should probably water it. Water first thing in the morning, and water the soil, not the blooms.

Do consider vegetables. Vegetable plants are beautiful. Try mixing in a few with your flowering plants.

Do consider the moon. Will your container be somewhere it will be seen at night? Silver foliage and white flowering plants really pop in the moonlight.

Do look for unique things to plant in. Pinterest is a great resource for ideas. From birdbaths, to ashtrays, to old boots, if it holds soil it’s a planter.

Container gardening. Let’s go beyond the ‘spike, geranium, vinca vine’ combo. Have FUN with those containers this year, and let us help YOU think outside the pot!


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