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I can’t Contain myself!

Container gardening is just plain fun….I can’t contain myself! OK so here’s the deal….anything can be a container provided it meets two criteria…1) It can hold enough quality potting soil and 2) The container must have drainage…… After that the sky is the limit!

Your next approach should be to decide which direction the container will be viewed from….all sides or is the container up against a wall? Take the approach of thinking “Thriller….Filler….Spiller” planting from the center out or from the back to the front. Grasses are great as “thrillers” because they provide long linear lines for the center or back of the pot or as in the case with this picture a Palm plant is used. Next once the “fillers” and the “spillers” or trailing plants are selected you can let them duke it out “Darwinian” style as the season progresses.

All great containers in my opinion have 4 things in common……

  • Good quality potting soil and enough of it to allow roots to grow
  • Good feeding….a combination of slow release and water soluble fertilizer
  • Thrillers, Fillers and Spillers
  • Proper drainage

Texture and varying leaf structure is important so the eye has a variety of “stop off points” to focus as opposed to viewing the container as a whole.

Print up a color wheel from the internet (Google “color wheel”) and put some great color combinations together. Consider a planter with Triad colors….3 colors equidistant on the color wheel…Red-Yellow-Blue or Violet-Orange-Green.

Another great approach is complementary colors…colors opposite from each other on the color wheel like violet and yellow.

Monochromatic schemes allow you to plant all of the same color but in different shades.

I like to use Pink in my plantings because pink is a color that plays well with just about any other color…from burgundy to orange and blue….pink seems to enhance almost any color. A rule of thumb is to use hot bright colors for pots viewed from a distance and to use cool colors for pots in “relaxing” areas. White is a great color for entertaining areas because it shows off great after sunset.

If you can’t make up your mind…take a Polychromatic approach and mix it up with a flurry of colors!


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