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Do you want to know why I love container gardens? You can grow plants in almost anything imaginable. A few unconventional container ideas include a hollow tree stump, a watering trough, an old tire or a wheelbarrow. I have even seen an old VW bug left out in a yard used as a container garden; it was adorned in beautiful and colorful flowers. Basically, the question isn’t where to grow a container garden but where can’t you grow one!
Growing flowers in containers also has many advantages compared to traditional gardening. First, you do not need a yard; container gardens can be set on patios, balconies or window sills. You can move container gardens around to take advantage of the sun, as well as rotate the entire garden to avoid lopsided growth. You can grow plants that would otherwise not be suited to your soil since you have the power to control the pH of your potting mixture. Finally, you vary the display anytime you want and take your garden with you if you ever move!
Follow these tips to create outstanding container gardens wherever you are:
- Choose a container that is large enough for the root ball of your plant and some additional room for it to grow.
- Make sure the container has adequate drainage. Place some pebbles or potshards over the drain hole to help keep the potting medium inside the pot.
- Choose a good quality sterile potting medium. A potting mixture of peat, perlite or vermiculite is also a good option; it has the advantage of being very lightweight, too.
- Set your plants in the container so that they sit at the same depth as they were in the original pot. Fill the container to 1 inch from the top to allow room for water. You might want to do this close to where the container will be located; the combination of soil, water, and planter can get very heavy.
- Mulch the surface; this not only conserves moisture but also improves the overall appearance.
- During dry spells, containers should be watered daily. Use low water pressure directed at the soil, the plants’ leaves can deflect water away from the soil if you water from above; this is also true of rain. Be sure to frequently check that your plants are not drying out.
- Frequent watering can also wash nutrients out of the soil. Try to fertilize every three to four weeks.
- Protecting your plants in the winter can sometimes be challenging. Don’t allow them to get too dry. Bring them indoors, to a greenhouse for instance, to prevent them from freezing
Good luck and happy container gardening!
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