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How To Garden With Planters, Pots & Window Boxes

Aug 11, 2008
The important components for a project like this are the containers, the soil, and the plants. You can use almost any size container, as long as it is big enough to hold the root ball of the plant with room to grow. Don't try and cheat and shove your plant intocontainer that is only just big enough to hold it, believe me, that won't go well in the long run.

Make sure there's at least an inch or two of space in which to put potting soil. The one thing you want to remember is that the smaller the pot, the more often it will need to be watered. Be especially careful to keep an eye on small pots in sunny locations. You can be flexible with the type of container you use as well.

It's fun to find items to recycle as plant containers. Decorated instant coffee cans, old pots or bowls, or even an old kitchen sink can become a home for plants. If you're looking at large pottery or terra cotta pots, glazed pots are better for holding in moisture. However, if you're willing to water more often, unglazed terra cotta pots are lovely to look at and inexpensive.

There are many plants that can adapt well to life in a container. Dwarf fruit bushes or trees, like limes, blueberries or oranges, can do wonderfully in containers with the right attention and care. Strawberries can do well, too! Bamboos and grasses are hardy, easy to care for, and look great in a large pot. You can also grow vines and train them up a small trellis! You imagination is the limit for what you can do with a container garden.

However, do ask your nursery for advice on which species and varieties are best for containers. While a dwarf orange tree will do well in a pot, a full sized one won't. The kind of soil you use in your container is very important. Don't use dirt you dig up from your garden it will just dry out and compact if used as potting soil. I've found that commercial compost works well, but most people recommend only using actual potting soil.

Either can be found at the nursery or most hardware stores. Potting soil is specially formulated to retain moisture and keep its structure in a confined space. This is very important to the health of your plant. While container gardening is fairly easy, they do have a few special needs.

You will need to water your container plants more often than if they were planted in the ground. A pot, no matter how large it is, has much less water holding capacity than soil in the ground there's simply less space. Be especially careful to check on your containers frequently during hot weather containers, especially small ones, can dry out quickly in the heat.

If your pots have good drainage, (most ceramic or terra cotta ones have a hole in the bottom) it's hard to overwater. However, a good rule of thumb is to only water once the soil is dry more than an inch deep. It is fairly easy to check this with your finger.
About the Author
Chris Jensen is a contributing author of Jetfly Blog. For more related articles and views visit Jetfly Home & Garden Blog now. Also, for the best up-to-date related online products, check out Jetfly Garden Planters, Pots & Window Box Shop for todays current online deals.
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