I’ve been so busy in my garden that I haven’t been able to post any articles on the Master Gardening Series (MGS). You’ve probably already have your containers done for this year, but keep these guidelines for next year.
There are over 34 flower containers in my garden which is 85% shade which provide summer long color/texture.
I also love their versatility and upkeep ease….most can be easily moved….filling in different areas as bloom season changes.
Plant container guidelines:
1) Color Scheme; 2) Plant Height and 4) Plant Variety
TIP: I rarely go to a garden center with a particular plant in mind! When I head out I’ve decided on my Color Scheme…
Then I focus on Plant Height (TMFT)
1) Tall plants 12-16″
2) Mediums size plants 8-10″
3) Fillers (small) plants 5-8″
4) Trailer (falling) plants
and Plant Variety:
Use a minimum of 3 different plant varieties. In my container I use between 4-5 different varieties.
TIP: I purchase 95% of my plants from our farmers market, in my area, they have the best prices. The only downsize, our farmers market doesn’t open until the first week in June.
But it is worth the wait because the cost savings are worth it: full 48 count flats are $10, perennials are $5 a gallon.
These are the plants I just bought at the farmer market: My color scheme is pink, blues and white. Note: red flowers are for a friend. There are flats of tall, medium, filler and trailers plants.
My container has an open weave and I used landscape burlap as lining, looks better and is less expensive than cocoa fillers.
TIP: potting soil can become expensive, depending on your container size fill it will newspaper or empty plastic containers to “take up space”, lessening the amount of soil used.
I plant my tall plants first (typically in center, but can also be in back in a round container).
Most containers plants have become root bound. You’ll see plant roots growing in circles or are a “tangled” mass of roots. Loosen the roots by breaking apart with your fingers or cutting slashes. Don’t worry this helps the plant grow stronger.
placed my trailer plants in both corners…
third I added the medium size plants, the pink Nicotiana (tobacco plant).
The medium sized plants I use typically comes in a 4 pack. I rarely break them apart and plant separately. This takes too much time, I loosen the individual roots BUT plant the 4 pack as one individual plant.
next I added fillers/small. I use two different plants for my filler, 1) petunias and a white trailer plant. When I use a trailer plant as filler I let them “wind” inside the container instead of trailing down.
This container has 5 different varieties in it. I stuff my containers with flowers, wanting my containers to look bushy and full.
This is right after planting, my container already looks full.
In every gardener there is a child who believes in The Seed Fairy. ~Robert Brault