What I love most about container gardening is how easy it is to create stunning displays, even for gardening novices. By combining different colors and textures, there are thousands of different lovely combinations you can create, even with limited space and a tight budget. When selecting flowers for your containers, there are three plant categories you should try to incorporate into each container.
Category 1: Fillers
These are plants or flowers that will fill each container with plenty of yummy color. These tend to be mounding in nature, and as they grow, they will become the backbone or base of your container’s overall look.
Some of my favorite fillers: Begonias (part sun), Impatiens (part sun), Petunias (full sun), Pentas (full sun)
Category 2: Spillers
These are plants or flowers that will trail or spill over the side of the container as it grows, adding dimension and texture to the display.
Some of my favorite spillers: Sweet Potato Vine (full sun), Calibrachoa (full sun), Verbena (full sun), Dichondra (part sun)
Category 3: Thrillers
These are plants or flowers that demand to be noticed! Aim for one plant like this one in each container to be the showy attention-grabber of the display.
Some of my favorite thrillers: Spike Dracaena (part to full sun), Geranium (full sun)
With the categories listed above in mind, I put together a number of different containers for our front porch. This year, I decided to tackle my summer containers on a day when I had two school events to attend, contractors replacing the gutters on our home, and a baseball game to prepare snacks for. (I know: I am a glutton for punishment.) On days like these, I would usually put style on the backburner and resort to wearing my typical ratty outdoor work clothes–an old sorority t-shirt and a ratty pair of shorts–but this year, I added a new outdoor ensemble from Duluth Trading Company to my closet specifically for days like these. It was so nice have comfortable, functional outdoor work clothes that could bridge the work-to-play gap so beautifully. My new skort, tank and wide-brimmed hat (a life-saver on hot summer days!) will undoubtedly be in heavy wardrobe rotation all summer long as I work and play to my heart’s content!
In my first container, which receives a healthy amount of sun, I planted bright red petunias (filler), cheerful yellow calibrachoa and vibrant green sweet potato vine (spillers), and spike dracaena (thriller).
My second container, which lives under the porch, features plants more tolerant to shade: red begonias (filler), soft green dichondra (spiller), and spike dracaena (thriller).
You’ll notice that although each of my containers incorporates different types of flowers, there is a red/yellow theme throughout. When planting multiple containers to be displayed in the same space, stick with a consistent color scheme throughout for maximum impact.
I hope today’s tips have inspired you to see how easy it is to create stunning containers for your home’s outdoor spaces. Planting containers really is a perfect way to get little ones involved in gardening!
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