More or less pots, this year?

lavender_lass(4b)January 6, 2011

Despite the need to be watered more often, I really like growing some annuals in pots. The soil is warmer than our clay and it gives some height to the garden.

One of my favorites is petunias, but I'm thinking of trying some vegetables this year, too. There are so many warm weather veggies that just start producing, then we get our first freeze. Maybe they'll grow faster in the pots! LOL Worth a try :)

So, I'm thinking of trying more pots this year. What about you?

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I can't grow much of anything in pots, so...less. :) My mother has the most beautiful pots in her yard, but I forget to water mine only in the ground for me.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2011 at 2:55PM
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I hear you, mayblooms. I have no luck with container gardening, unless it's a single geranium in a big terracotta urn. That I can handle. But next year I'm also going to try more petunias, the neighbor put some in her brick planter near the road last year, and they looked beautiful up until frost and beyond.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2011 at 4:25PM
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christinmk z5b eastern WA

Pots are getting to be a sore subject with me. With lugging them indoors for winter that is! I love the look of terra cotta pots. Unfortunantly they can not stay out for winter here else they will crack ;-( As you can see, I have quite a few to bring in every year (some with plants still IN them too!)

This year I will try and avoid buying any more terra cottas and get some containers that can stay outdoors all year. Re-using items is fun. I have an old BBQ bucket, pail, and coal bucket that are all being used now as containers. Maybe I will try and find some other things like those.

-LL, you should try veggies in pots! I've found that they work great for things like eggplant and peppers, which never seem to get going here until mid summer. Only the cherry and currant type tomatoes seem to do okay in pots for me. Could be they need bigger than 7gal pots for their large root systems though!

    Bookmark   January 6, 2011 at 4:38PM
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Thyme2dig NH Zone 5

LL, for a number of years now I have been doing leaf lettuce in window boxes attached to my deck railings. I've also done baby cukes which can just hang down trailing since they're small. Once the lettuce is done I plant them up with annuals. I also intermingle some round pots of other annuals and sometimes peppers. Since everything is right on the deck railing it's easy to keep everything watered.

This was June

This was Oct

I hesitate to do any pots in the garden since I'm never sure when we'll be watering, but am thinking about tucking some in here or there this year.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2011 at 6:13PM
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CMK - nice selection of terra cotta. I love them too, but for the same reason I hesitate to buy more no matter how much I fall in love with one.

Thyme - now that's what I'm talking about! I might even try the Love Lies Bleeding (botanical name, starts with "A"?) in pots on my porch railing next summer. They need lots of sun tho right?

    Bookmark   January 6, 2011 at 6:29PM
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holleygarden Zone 8, East Texas

thyme2dig - very impressive!

I always forget to water the pots, so last year I had none. But they always look so pretty in pictures, this year I'm thinking about get a few pots and trying again. I'm just going to make sure they're BIG pots so maybe they won't dry out as fast!

    Bookmark   January 6, 2011 at 7:00PM
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I got those big square plastic pots (look like terra cotta) at Lowe's. They work really well, since they're big and can go two or three days between watering...even with our 95 degree summers...with very little humidity.

The petunias always do well in the pots. I planted a few in the garden last year, but they really look nicer in the pots.

Thyme- Beautiful deck! Wait until I show my mom...she's going to love that. She has a very similar deck area. Do you have any trouble with water on the railings? Do you treat them with anything? Thanks for the great idea :)

    Bookmark   January 6, 2011 at 7:15PM
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Several years ago I vowed to never again do potted plants as we traveled in the summer and it's not always easy to find a 'plant sitter' then. However last year we hadn't any trips planned so I did 10 (at least). They all did well except one and I think it was the type of clay so this year if I do as many I'll line that pot with plastic. Most of my pots are terracotta which I prefer the look of. The largest one I have is huge but easier because it's plastic altho in hot dry weather they all need watering once a day, twice sometimes. I may use some polymer crystals in the soil this year to try to decrease the watering chore. Forgot this year in my excitement to get everything potted up.

Growing in pots is a good way for us northern gardeners to enjoy perennials well outside our zones. I bot a Lavender Dentata which is hardy to zone 8 and planned to use it as an annual but it still looked so good in the fall that I brought it inside. It's easy care and doing well in a window and if it continues I'll put it out again on the deck for the summer. Definitely worth the $2.99 I paid for it! Something to keep in mind when looking for plants to pot.

Love that amaranthus! Might have to try some of that this year.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2011 at 7:34PM
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mnwsgal 4 MN(4)

More, I'm going to try peppers and peas in pots this year. I quit growing peas as they didn't finish up early enough for me to replace in my small veg garden with tomatoes and beans.

Like thyme2dig, I also grow lettuce in window boxes though mine hang from the deck railings in wire deck plant holders, rather than on the railings.

I also grow brugmansia, canas, dahlias, and morning glories in pots. This fall I received many cuttings of brugmansias which will be potted though expect to cut back on the number of other plants.

The large pots on the back patio are plastic but the ones in front are ceramic/terra cotta. Some of the ceramic ones are used to hold plants that are in plastic pots, ie: palm tree, star jasmine, pot in a pot style which makes is easy to bring the plants inside for the winter.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2011 at 5:03PM
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Thyme2dig NH Zone 5

I should have also shown the photo with the backdrop to the pots. In front of the deck I have ironweed and joe pye weed that grows up above the deck railings and forms a nice, cozy hidden deck. This was in Aug.

LL, hmmmmmm....I have to admit I'm kind of afraid to see what the railings look like under there! LOL! I usually take them up each year but for the last 2 winters I've left them. We have someone coming to paint the house and farmer's porch this spring so I'm going to have him powerwash and treat the back and side decks. Then we're going to replace these plastic window boxes with some wooden window boxes we saw at HD. I think msnwgal has the right idea with having the pots hang from the deck.

Schoolhouse, it is Amaranthus caudatus. It said it would grow to 3-5 feet and it really did hang down quite a bit. I actually took those small (18-24") bamboo stakes and jammed them in the pots and then tied the amaranthus up so it had more height in the pot before trailing down. Those pots are in full sun.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2011 at 7:38PM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

This far south they're a PIA. I have some on all 4 porches ... none in the yard.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2011 at 7:42PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

I have quite a few. They are great where we have weird bits and pieces of concrete foundation where I don't really want it but fear removing it. So the pots cover it up and then I just surround them with some rocks. I have tiny stairs so I surround the stairs to beef them up until I get some new front stairs...
At the back basement door I had a HUGE hypertufa planter built. The soil really needs overhauling in it, but I plan to put some patio squares by the stairs and make a pot ghetto and just put it on timed drip irrigation. I also put pots on the front stairs next door (they need to be redone, and I don't want to pay for it so that spruces it up a bit...:)
When we get the back yard done I will have pots and hanging baskets on the deck again. It used to be pretty back there with hanging baskets in my shed area and along the back of the house.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2011 at 8:46PM
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