Gardening in Pots/Containers are not just decorative objects that fill up the odd corner of a room which would otherwise look bare; or just filling an empty space in your garden. Handled correctly they can be an integral part of in/outdoor design and add enormously to the total look of your home and garden. Pots, tubs, and half barrels overflowing with flowers add appeal to any garden.
Place pots on the ground or on a pedestal, mount them on a windowsill, or hang them from your porch. A pair of matching containers on either side of the front walk serves as a welcoming decoration, while containers on a deck or patio can add colour to outdoor sitting areas. Also consider arranging groups of pots, both small and large on stairways, terraces, or anywhere in the garden. Clusters of pots can contain a collection of favourite plants or herbs used both for ornament and for cooking, or they may feature annuals, dwarf evergreens, perennials, or any other plants you’d like to try. Houseplants summering outdoors in the shade also make a handsome addition to container gardens.
Growing plants in containers is also a way of producing special plants where soil or other conditions eg. limited space or severe frost make gardening difficult. There is a vast range of plants to choose from, including flowering and shrub-like plants, and those noted for their shape and colour of their foliage. Looked after carefully they can last for years, and if arranged with thought and imagination, groups of plants can look like living sculptures.
Containers are of many kinds and it is advisable to give careful thought to the type of containers needed for different plants. House plants are generally grown in fairly small clay pots which can be hidden inside more decorative pots. They can also be grouped together in ornamental window-boxes (it is easier to keep a window-box looking attractive if the plants in it are grown in individual pots rather than planted in soil in die window-box itself. This makes changing plants easier). Plants which are to be grown outdoors should be planted in larger containers as to make a good show and encourage growth. Plant boxes of durable timber, tubs or large pots are the best containers to use. It is always important to see that there are drainage holes at the bottom.
Soil in the container should be rich in humus and friable in texture (clay soil packs into a solid mass). For plants which like acid soil see that the mixture is acid, adding peat when necessary. For succulents use more sand in the mixture.
Water -no specific rules can be laid down as to how often to water plants in containers. How much and how often depends on the nature of the plant and the weather conditions. Test the soil with the finger – if it is dry, water until the water seeps through the drainage holes – water thoroughly, not in drips. Most indoor plants appreciate a spray from time to time and those with large, fleshly, shiny leaves should be sponged gently to rid them of any dirt.