Chloe is my Great Niece. She lives in Kearney, Missouri with her mother, my niece Erica, her dad Dirk, and her two older brothers. A real cutie! She just celebrated her 2nd birthday on August 22, 2011 and I'm quite certain that she is a 2-year old who is full of surprises.
I am told that Chloe is the keeper of some of the container plants and gardens at her home. And by her expression in this photo, she means business! Kansas and Missouri have also endured excessive heat this summer, as have a lot of our other states. Chloe must keep up with the maintenance and care of her patio and porch plants in order to keep them thriving. So I invited her to join me in a garden 'pow-wow' to compare notes and discuss container gardening.
You know, with so much drought this summer, some flower beds and flowering trees and bushes have perished. But, you can still enjoy some low maintenance container gardens, and they're easy to move around out of the scorching sun if need be.
Chloe and I put our heads together and visited gardeningabout.com. Here are a few tips we found about container gardening that we would like to share.
1) Try to co-ordinate the size of your pots to the size of the area you want to dress up. And DON'T let yourself lose 'itty bitty' plants in pots that are too large.
Now, this is a nice area, and the pots are arranged in a fashion that is attractive and all-visible. We see a lot of porch steps with container plants...they really add to these old steps, don't they?
You can put simple plants in fancy pots, or fancy pants (oops! I mean plants) in simple pots. The garden directly above, I think, is compiled of simple plants in a simple pot. And it's gorgeous! It's like an ice cream sundae with a cherry on top!!! Chloe agrees that it looks good enough to eat! Trailing at the bottom is the polkadot plant, and I would bet they only used four 4" pots or just one 6-pack of these plants for the bottom of the arrangement. I've had polkadot plants before and enjoyed them...eventually, they will produce tiny pale pink blooms. You can also get this plant with pink polkadots. Flouncing above the polkadots are begonias in alternating red and pink. Once again, just a few 4" pots of each color for the begonias-and, you can even divide them. They have the lighter green leaves that I like best. And, then, towering above is one coleus (under $2.00) of variegated burgundy and lime. Coleus are so much fun. And can be easily propagated (my favorite gardening term)! All of these plants are inexpensive-but, this arrangement looks pretty high dollar! It would require some shade time to keep the polkadots and coleus from burning up. All of the plants in this pot are virtually shade-lovers.
2) Color * Go for contrast...you want drama and impact! Refer to the color wheel if you must, to find opposite-like colors.
Now, this is what I call contrast! Pop! Pop! Pop! The container looks like red brick, and it's adorned with the luscious lime potato vine, some red and lime coleus, and what looks like marigolds. This display is almost blinding with drama, and we love the look!
For harmony an tranquility, go with one color in different shades. Chloe and I found the pretty palate above to be harmonious and fun! I'm not sure what these flowers are, but they are in shades of blue with a variety of blue porcelain pots. What a unique idea...different, yet the same!
3) Bones and focal points * Try to create a palate using a larger plant for your focal point. You can mix in trees, shrubs and even houseplants.
Wow! Chloe and I selected this arrangement to show that one 'focal' point can evolve into several, easily. The main one here being that beautiful large sunflower. And what a variety of plants! Chloe and I were able to spot, not only the sunflowers, but, in the washtub it looks like snapdragons, and we saw marigolds, perriwinkles, blue salvia, some yellow mums (possibly), and what looks like small purple petunias. And all of the containers used were galvanized buckets and tubs. This is probably the prettiest container garden of all-I love blues and yellows together, and the clever arrangement of the tubs and buckets.
Well, my gracious readers, this is our presentation...we hope you marveled as we did at these lovely container gardens. They can be a refreshing and stressfree alternative to larger gardening areas when conditions are not so favorable.
Just remember this...be sure to choose plants that enjoy being together. When placing two or more plants in one container, consider their likes...do all need a lot of water, or not so much? And, are all sun-loving or shade-loving plants? If you choose your plant mates sensibly, you are bound for great success!
Chloe and I have some folks to thank for the research that made our post possible
And we would like to thank our wonderful families! "Chloe-I thank you with all my heart for taking time to collaborate with me on this post. It was entertaining and, I for one, learned from it. We also got to enjoy some great pictures of fabulous container gardens".
As my guest, Chloe, would you consider doing the closing quote? I know you have to get back to your gardening. Hope to see you soon!
"Today is one of a kind and will only happen once-
so make it great!"
Have a safe and happy Labor Day holiday from My Texas Gardens!