106 Container Gardening Ideas
Enjoy nonstop color all season long with these container gardening ideas and plant suggestions. You'll find beautiful pots to adorn porches and patios.
Let's hear it for elephant's ear! Its oversize leaves—the secret to this stately combination—create drama through scale. And they allow you to fill in the blanks with tiny, colorful flowers.
Tougher than Clint Eastwood, lantana parties in heat, chortles at drought, and blooms in a slew of sunny colors from spring to fall. Plus, its nectar-laden flowers attract pretty butterflies like moths to a flame.
The high-drama, low-maintenance container spotlights 'Variegated Spreading Salmon' SunPatiens, but leaves room for a foxtail asparagus fern and a 6-inch pot of 'Neon' pothos.
In the largest pot, working from back to front and tallest to shortest, densely plant 'Liberty Classic Yellow' snap-dragon, 'Bouquet Rose Magic' dianthus, and 'Tickled Pink' veronica. Place 'New Look' dusty miller and 'Lemon Ball' sedum in the front to trail over the edge. Pack a powerful, single-note punch in the two smaller pots by planting 'Supertunia Vista Bubblegum' petunia in the midsize container and more sedum in the smallest.
Similar pots: wayfair.com
Watch: No-Fail Formula for Container Gardens
Southerners used to have to choose between geraniums that could handle high temps and humidity and those that produced lots of flowers. But Calliope series geraniums were developed to offer the best of both worlds. This one's called "Dark Red."
Heat-tolerant geraniums, calibrachoas, and mecardonias in bright red, yellow, and purple shout a welcome in a cheerful way.
Take advantage of seasonal sales at your local nursery, and stock up on popular plants. Keep them in their nursery pots, and display them in galvanized buckets on the porch until you are ready to plant them in your garden. Recreate this look with gerbera daisies, salvias, shasta daisies, daylilies, and sweet potato vines.
Similar galvanized pots here.
Are you dreaming of a summer vacation, but the only thing on the horizon is more heat and humidity? It may not be a balmy getaway, but bringing the Tropics to your doorstep is a breeze with this combo: giant-leaved, sunny ‘Maui Gold’ elephant’s ear; heavily blooming, fiery orange SunPatiens; velvety, fragrant citronella plant; purple iridescent Persian shield; and a heavenly skirt of angel vine spilling down the sides.
Similar pot here.
Consider using a cast-concrete pool for a miniature garden. Because these pools are made to accommodate plumbing, there are already holes in the bottom that allow for drainage.
Red ‘Freida Hemple’ caladiums, a spider plant, and a ‘Little Gem’ Southern magnolia decorate a large pot in the corner and hide the downspout. Smaller pots of the same caladiums tie together the grouping.
Let your plants spill out of their container. A generous planting of golden variegated sweet flag (Acorus gramineus ‘Ogon’) fills this kettle, with golden creeping Jenny (Lysimachia nummularia ‘Aurea’) trailing out and onto the gravel below.
Use containers to fill bare spots in your garden. This concrete planter, tucked into a planting of dianthus, is filled with tiny textured succulents, pulling you in for a closer look.
Add color to your outdoor party with potted plants. There’s no need for a patterned tablecloth here. Potted petunias add all the color you need under the glass-top dining table.
Don’t ignore edibles when selecting your planting materials. Different varieties of lettuce have beautiful color and texture. Here, several leafy edibles mix with violas and mums.
Transplants of cilantro, parsley, and chives are at their best in late winter months, both in containers and in the ground. Plant them in a shallow box, as pictured, and use them as an outdoor centerpiece.
This pink ‘Dragon Wing’ begonia drips with flowers throughout the summer and into fall. Combine it with ‘Silver Falls’ dichondra for a splash of color against shimmering foliage.
Get creative with your containers. This living gate rolls open to let you in and rolls closed for privacy. The structure starts with a galvanized horse trough filled with soil and planted with arborvitaes. A wooden brace attached to an old piano dolly on the bottom allows the container to move with little effort.
If you’re not yet color confident, choose one flower you love in a favorite shade, and stick with it. For more texture and interest, add foliage that complements the color of your flowers.
The natural hues of the sweet potato vine and pennisetum make the trio of pink geraniums, petunias, and angelonias pop.
'Caliente Pink' geraniums, 'Surfinia Rose Veined' petunias, and 'Techno Heat Light Blue' lobelias create a soft and feminine color palette for this doorstep welcome.
Unlike cut blooms, a living flower arrangement planted in a container gives you color and beauty for months. Combine plants that thrive in the same growing conditions and offer colors and textures that complement each other.
The colorful foliage of caladiums has tons of drama. Pots containing three different caladiums add color and variety to this entry in summer. From left to right: ‘June Bride,’ ‘Pink Gem,’ and ‘Aaron’
When filling a show-stopping window box, don't hesitate to use small evergreen shrubs or perennials, which last throughout the seasons. In the fall, turn to mums, kales, pansies, violas, and snapdragons for color, and then add a few daffodil or tulip bulbs for a pop in the spring.
Easy and versatile, collards have graced Southern gardens and tables for generations. A cousin to kale and cabbage, these nutritious, leafy greens thrive in the cooler weather of fall and early spring.
Make a statement with a large overflowing container against a blank wall, parking court, or at the edge of a terrace and fill with 'Diamond Frost' euphorbia, coleus, 'Supertunia Vista Bubblegum' petunia, and geranium.
Yellow acorus, lime green euphorbia, purple viola, variegated ivy, and pink Lenten rose make this container pop. Combine lenten roses with these three great plants for maximum curb appeal:
- Hostas: Their wide leaves hide the foliage of fading bulbs.
- Daffodils: Early-blooming types continue the show.
- Black mondo grass: It's dark, grassy foliage provides excellent contrast.