Plants for Containers – What to Plant in Garden Pots and Planters

Plants for Containers

Window-boxes 15-20cm (6-8in) deep are suitable for growing a large variety of plants. In spring they can come alive with bulbs planted the previous autumn — snowdrops (Galanthus), crocuses, dwarf daffodils, narcissi and tulips, hyacinths, scillas and dwarf irises, for example. 

Many summer bedding plants grow well in window-boxes, but avoid tall-growing kinds which spoil the proportions of the box. A charming effect can be created by mixing trailing plants — helichrysums, ivy-leaved pelargoniums, lobelias (Lobelia erinus), nasturtiums (Tropaeolum majus) and verbenas, for instance — with petunias, marigolds (Calendula and Tagetes), fibrous and tuberous begonias, pansies (Viola X wittrockiana) and salvias (Salvia splendens). Do not overlook dwarf shrubs and conifers which add form and permanency to a box —shrubby cinquefoils (Potentilla hybrids), fuchsias, hebes and dwarf conifers, such as the upright types of juniper. 

plants-for-containers In winter, dwarf conifers, especially the golden and blue forms, are excellent in window-boxes. They can be grown with winter-flowering heathers (Erica carnea) and ivies (Hedera helix varieties), while a few winter-flowering hardy cyclamen (Cyclamen coum) add a delicate touch. 

Free-standing stone, concrete and plastic tubs and troughs can be filled with the same plants as window-boxes — the choice being wider for very large containers. Keep a good balance by planting tall plants with low-growing and trailing ones. The evergreen foliage of variegated ivy and periwinkle makes a good foil for the bright colours of busy Lizzies (Impatiens), pelargoniums, sweet Williams (Dianthus barbatus) and marigolds (Calendula and Tagetes), as well as calceolarias and heliotropes. 

plants-for-containers Many house plants are also effective with summer bedding plants. The arching leaves of spider plants (Chlorophytum comosum) complement agapanthus, while a cordyline set at the rear of a low container with bedding plants adds height and form. Also, the flaming colours of coleus mix well with silver-leaved cineraria (Senecio maritima) and either silver-grey or lemon-grey helichrysums. 

Large tubs make ideal containers for lilies, hydrangeas and standard fuchsias, both in sun and light shade. Bay trees (Laurus nobilis), trained as standards, are favourites beside the front door. And for a less formal effect plant winter jasmine (Jasminum nudiforum) or forsythia. Roses, clematis, azaleas, camellias and Japanese maples (Acer palmatum varieties) are also good tub plants. For deep shade, plant tubs with pieris, mahonias, hostas, brunneras and hellebores. 

Hanging baskets are usually viewed from below and should consist mainly of trailing plants — nasturtiums, tradescantias, fuchsias, creeping Jenny (Lysimachia nummularia), petunias, ivy-leaved pelargoniums, lobelias and pendulous begonias, for instance.


21. November 2010 by admin
Categories: Container Gardening, Gardening Ideas, Plants | Tags: , | Comments Off on Plants for Containers – What to Plant in Garden Pots and Planters


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