The best thing about containers is you can put them anywhere, move them around if you need a change, and fill them with different displays for each season.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT CONTAINER
Choose containers that harmonize with your planting and colour scheme.
Think about containers that are large enough to have some visual impact.
Ensure your container has a drainage hole at the bottom; if excess water cannot drain, your plants will suffer from root rot.
Use a saucer to prevent staining on the surface below your containers.
HOW TO PLANT
Cover the drainage hole with pieces from a broken clay pot or small stones. Add 1 cm – 2 cm (0.5” – 1″) of gravel or more broken clay bits.
Use Parkwood™ Premium Potting Mix, a potting soil that’s specifically blended for container growing.
Do not use topsoil or triple mix. These are too heavy, create poor drainage in a container, and your plants will not flourish.
Water your plants well before removing them from the containers you bought them in. Dry roots are brittle and break very easily.
If there are masses of roots and you can barely see any soil, pull them gently apart with your fingers.
Firm plants into the soil and water with Parkwood® Transplanter 5-15-5 to the point where the water just begins to seep out of the drainage hole.
Since trees haven’t leafed out in April, you don’t need to worry quite so much about the shade factor.
This planting is temporary and only meant to be around for 4 to 6 weeks.
Spring-flowering Bulbs, Pansies, and Primulas are great choices for spring
Purchase potted bulbs in early April and transfer them to your container(s).
Select Daffodils and/or Tulips for height, surround them with Hyacinths (fragrance) and/or Dwarf Daffodils, and then edge the pot with Crocus, Dwarf Reticulated Iris, Pansies, Violas, or Primulas.
Variegated English Ivy has interesting foliage that can be added to spring planters.
Select plant material specifically for sun, partial shade, or full shade depending on where each container is going to be placed.
Use taller plants to create a focal point at the back if the pot is placed against a vertical surface such as a wall or lattice.
If the planter is in the open, put the taller plants in the center.
Focal point plants for sunny conditions (6 hours of direct sunlight or more), are Geraniums, Purple Fountain Grass, Gerbera Daisy, Nicotiana, Sunshine Impatiens, Lantana, Marguerite Daisy, and Midnight Spire Salvia.
A variety of edging and trailing plants that can be used around the perimeter of a sunny planter, include Petunias, Trailing Verbena, Million Bells, Ivy Geranium, Lotus Vine, Alyssum, Sanvitalia, Bacopa, Bidens, Licorice Vine, Blackie and Lime Sweet Potato Vine, Swan River and Dahlberg Daisy, Diascia, and Ivy.
For partial shade use Fibrous Begonias, Fuchsia, or Calla Lily with Lobelia, Fan Flower, Ivy, or Lysimachia to billow over the edge.
For full shade, concentrate on pale colours, especially white, that will jump out from a dark background. Non-stop and Angel-wing Begonias, Coleus, Browallia, Caladium, and Torenia all tolerate these lower light levels.
Vines can be grown in pots as long as support is provided. Use a trellis, tripod, or decorative obelisk placed right in the container. Annuals such as Morning Glory, Moon Vine, Sweet Pea, Cup and Saucer Vine, Nasturtium, and Scarlet Runner Bean produce a tremendous show.
Use a flowering standard to achieve a vertical effect. Tropical Hibiscus, Fuchsia, Lantana, or Daisy that can be under planted with either flowering (Bacopa) or foliage (Ivy).
Flowering Cabbage and Kale, Asters, and Chrysanthemums are all frost-tolerant annuals for fall.
Use frost proof containers to arrange Pine, Juniper, Cedar, Spruce, Hemlock, or Spruce boughs with red and Yellowtwig Dogwood, Winterberry, and Curly Willow branches before the soil freezes.
Add some large pinecones at the edge of the pot to fill in.
Add white mini-lights as the weather turns colder and everything is frozen firmly in place.
Fertilize your annual containers with Parkwood™ Flower Food 15-30-15 every 10 days to 2 weeks for maximum bloom.
Cut off the dying flower heads as soon as they begin to fade with a sharp pair of hand pruners. This process is called deadheading and prevents the plants from setting seed. Annuals that successfully produce seed don’t feel the necessity to bloom anymore and take a lot of coaxing to bring back into flower.
In hot weather, water your containers/hanging baskets daily. They tend to dry out quicker than plants that are in the ground. If you’re going away on vacation, someone will need to care for them. We also suggest using a Plant Nanny to maintain moisture for up to five days.
Containers require a little more attention but they have many benefits. Not only do you get to enjoy the beauty of the pots themselves and what’s in them but you can also arrange them and plant them in a different way every year.