We are seeing more and more new gardeners getting interested in growing plants and what we have learnt is that they like to collect unusual plants and what better way to show off ones collection than in a selection of small terracotta pots. Whether you’re planning up a selection of succulents, herbs or instant colour for the patio, growing plants in small container is easy with our tips and ideas to get the best results.
Collecting plants is a great way to garden especially if you have limited space or if you do not have a garden or plan to not stay long in your current residence. One can grow anything in a container as long as it is in the right position is watered correctly and maintained for optimum health.
One of the advantages of building up a bit of a collection is that one can regularly change the display as different plants look at their best and also to give your patio or balcony a new look.
Need some Ideas?
Few things are more satisfying than growing food that you can eat. If you're living in an apartment or any other place without a backyard, you may think that this is an impossible dream, but you might be surprised by the variety of edibles you can grow in containers.
Most herbs will do really well in a 15cm to 20cm diameter pot. Veggies and berries are better in an 18cm to 25cm diameter pot. Try herbs such as Oregano, Thyme, Mint, Parsley and Basil as easy ones and as you go try some Fennel or Bunching Celery for something more unusual.
Succulents are truly fun to collect but it does come with a warning... once you start your collection will probably grow and by that we mean in number too. Succulents need a well draining spot they are water wise. This does not mean that they don’t need water.
Succulents in smaller containers need to be watered much more frequently than their garden counterparts. If you let them dry out to a dusty soil the leaves will shrivel and growth will be minimal.
When it comes to size of containers one can really play with succulents. Almost any size will do but transplant or divide them as they outgrow the container to keep them healthy.
Colourful collections are always popular. So often we see containers of Geraniums and petunias cascading over balconies on Pinterest and in magazines. It’s so easy to do and very rewarding. The trick is to feed every week with colour and to not let them dry out especially if they are in full sun.
Geraniums and Calli Petunias need a pot with a diameter of 16cm or more. If you are planting Impatiens or Begonias we would suggest containers with a diameter of 18cm or more.
Quick Care and Tips
- Water at least twice a week in summer more during hot weather cycles. Through the cooler months once a week should be sufficient. Always water to fill the container and once that has run out the base repeat the watering to ensure that all the soil is watered.
- Use a liquid fertiliser to ensure fertiliser get to all the roots. Multifeed Classic or Nitrosol ware easy to mix and apply with a watering can. In summer feed every second week and in winter once a month.
- Repot or into the next size as the plants outgrow the small container always using a soil mix specifically blended for containers. Do not use garden soil in pots as it will compact and your plants will die off slowly.