I’m a sucker for flowers, and who isn’t ?! They are bright, colorful, alive and smell beautifully. I can’t have flowers inside my home due to my 2 very naughty kitties. They eat and knock over any plant I bring in. So when spring arrives I’m usually bursting at the seams to add flowers to the exterior of my home where they’ll be safe. I’ve been potting plants since my senior year in college and back then I never knew there was an art to planting not to mention potting practices in general. A lot of plants have died at these hands, but I’m happy to say I’ve figured some things out along the way and I’m here to share what I’ve learned. Welcome to container planting 101!
++ FIRST select your container. Big or small, it doesn’t matter just make sure it’s a bit larger than your plant/s so they have room to grow
++ SECOND gather your plants together. I like to make a mock arrangement before actually planting the arrangement. Take a look at your plants, they always have a back and a front. Take note of it’s “best side” and plant it facing out. Rearrange your plants until you like how they look together. It’s easier to do when they are still in their temporary containers.
++ THIRD make sure you have proper drainage. If your pot doesn’t have a hole in the bottom of the pot, don’t be afraid to drill one. Your plants will thank you. To keep the soil you are about to put in the pot from draining out through the hole as well place a piece of an old sponge, moss or even a coffee filter over the hole to allow excess water to drain out.
++ FORTH fill your container with good potting soil. I use Miracle Grow Potting Soil and I’ve never been disappointed. I did however use a cheepo soil one year and it was a mess and my flowers didn’t do as well. There are other great brands out there as well, MG just works well for me.
++ FIFTH remove your plants from their temporary containers. Gently rock the plant back and forth to loosen the roots and shimmy the root ball out so it comes in one piece. Once removed gently rough up the roots to give them air and let them spread out again.
++ SIXTH plant your plants in their new containers in the arrangement you came up with in step two.
++ SEVENTH top the soil with decorative moss or mulch for added moisture protection. You can skip this step if your flowers will cover the soil eventually.
++ EIGHTH elevate your pot or use a pot saucer. This keeps the area around your pot tidy. The excess water from the drain hole can wash away or be contained in the saucer.
++ Need ideas on what to plant? Here’s a list of great combinations.
Have a great weekend!