Tips for Sun Container Gardening
There are so many things to consider when planning your window boxes and pots...here are some tips that will help you be successful.
- Consider the size of your container. The size of your container and the types of plants you are using make a difference. Most plants will grow 3 to 4 times larger by the end of the season, so leaving some room for growth is important,. We recommend using 5 to 7 plants in a 24” window box depending on the varieties you select.
- Great looking planters can be created using a single variety of plants, such as petunias, in multiple colors. Or pick a color and create visual interest by mixing plants with the same color blooms but different growing habits. One fun theme is to mix trailing plants and plants that have some height like calibrachoa and verbena as in 'Thriller, Filler & Spiller"
- Have fun with texture. Another variation is to choose plants that like the same conditions, but have different foliage textures and or colors. You could combine bacopa, osteospermum, and coleus - or allysum, angelonia, and impatiens.
- Consider an edible container! Your planter can look good as well as taste good if you choose plants you can eat. Create a kitchen garden container by combining herbs such as chives, thyme, and basil. Or give new meaning to the phrase “salad bowl” by planting up different varieties of lettuce in a round container. Pinch the leaves to create a salad to eat and then watch a new salad grow!
Thriller, Filler, Spiller
As you begin to plan your containers consider the size of the pot or window box, what colors you might like, and will it be in sun or shade.
You may have heard the expression:Thriller, Filler, Spiller. Let's break that down:
Thriller: a tall plant usually with a strong statement of form and color
Filler: a plant that fills the space hiding the soil
Spiller: a plant that weeps over the edge of the pot.
Following this recipe results in a three-dimensional arrangement that creates interest. Here is a simple graphic that details some of the sun-loving annuals you can use as a guide.