MySecretGarden

U.S.A., Washington State. USDA zone 8a. Sunset climate zone 5

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Containers in My Garden


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There is a smorgasbord of containers in my garden. They are of different sizes, colors, shapes, materials and pedigrees. Some of them came from rummage sales, some from home improvement stores and several from upscale fountain & statuary places.
I love lush, overflowing, eye-catching plant arrangements in the containers near restaurants, hotels and other places which are created by professional gardeners. I admire them but never actually tried to make even the slightest replicas of those masterieces. I always remember about my containers later, after all the other works in the garden. I also rarely follow the general rule about container arrangements: to combine such categories of plants as thriller, filler and spiller.
I even noticed that my principles of putting together my outfit and container arrangements are somehow similar. I go for a limited number of elements, sometimes with just several colors involved. Like this nicotiana, for example, in a dark red glazed pot.
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Some containers are so ornate and beautiful that I try to plant them with the plants which won't spill out and hide their beauty. Let's take this pair of stone-cast exquisite pots.
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Geranium, pansy and nicotiana were their residents in different seasons.
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Below is my newest pot. It is very special to me because it was made by Jim, the hosta hybridizer whose breathtaking shade garden was featured here:
'Enchanted Garden Of A Hosta Hybridizer'
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Here it is in Jim's garden:
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It could be used just as a garden ornament, but I planted it as soon as I came home after touring Jim's garden. The plant material was found in the garden: sedum, heuchera, some type of echeveria.
What I like about containers is that you can always replant them, replace some plants or just move them out of your sight if you don't like them, thus waiting for the moment when new ideas strike you.
One of my favorite plants for containers is geranium. I overwinter the best and healthiest looking geraniums. First, I used to get the plants from the pots and keep them dry in the garage during the winter. How I revitalized them in spring is told here: 'Geranium Revival'

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Lately, I stopped doing that. Not all the plants survive, and I don't want to spend time on that. I bring pots in the garage, start watering them at the end of the winter and watch who survived and who didn't. I have Martha Washington geraniums, which are in their 4th season, in the same pots. With zonal geraniums, my success rate is ....let's say 50%.
Some containers miss a season or two. The strawberry pot, below, wasn't filled this summer but looks good just as it is.
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Sometimes, changing a pot makes a huge difference in how a plant looks. Isn't it true about us too? Change an outfit and you are a brand new woman! Several years ago, I was looking for cut flowers to decorate a room. Finding nothing suiting my fancy, I bought a potted evergreen for $10. It stood in the room for quite a long time, then was moved outside and spent two or three years there. Here it is, in the next picture, showing two young squirrels which I flushed out while watering. Squirrels are cute, but the plant looks like nothing special, doesn't it? It was still in its original black plastic pot that I put inside a nice ceramic container (by the way, it got broken later).
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After visiting the Little and Lewis garden this summer, I looked critically at my potted plants, and the above mentioned evergreen caught my attention. I repotted it into the big Italian terracota pot bought for a miserable price several years ago. It looked better. I decided to prop up the supporting stick and the stick broke! How glad I was! The plant looks absolutely gorgeous in its new pot and without that stick! Simple and elegant, don't you think so?
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I like small planters too, like this cute Tucan:
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If I can't part with some of the non-gardening items, I use them in the garden as containers:
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Now, a little follow-up about my tulip containers featured earlier in the season

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I use simple pots to host tulips. Next year, I hope to find out what happens with tulips if the bulbs are left in the pots for winter. Or, should I get them out and store them in the refrigerator? If I leave them outside, I'll place them under the big fir trees to prevent rottening from rains.
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The question was asked if I planted anything else in them to grow after the tulips wilt. Yes, I threw some parsley seeds there! And, I have some parsley growing!
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There are more containers in my garden, but I showed you my favorites. Thanks for visiting, and I hope to see your favorite pots one day!


Copyright 2010 TatyanaS

34 comments:

  1. Love your favorite pots, Tatyana ... Jim's is a unique treasure. Wow, surprised you can grow pansies now ... way too hot here for those cuties. Can't believe August is almost half over :( ... hot/humid but I love summer :)

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  2. Beautiful, as always, Tatyana. The truck is genious.

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  3. Hi Tatyana, Love all your containers! Jim is really an artist.

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  4. Wow, I love your containers and the plantings in them. Everything looks so lush and wonderful.

    FlowerLady

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  5. Containers have always had a special appeal for me. I just love what happened with your unattractive evergreen that now looks lovely in the terracotta pot!

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  6. Great choice of plants - and the containers are lovely and imaginative.

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  7. Your pots are creative snd like you said, some look great with just one simple planting. Tatyana, your garden looks wonderful, not so heat affected like so many areas.

    Eileen

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  8. Hi Tatyana!! You have such a fabulous garden..always a treat to visit here and see the magic! I love all your gorgeous pots and urns..and oh my..those twin squirrels are sweet little rascals..what a great shot!
    Happy Gardening

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  9. I love container planting. I have a very large deck and need containers of all different sizes to give it some color and bring the garden in, so to speak. I overwinter my dragon wing begonia inside. It drops some leaves but survives and then comes back with a bang while summering on the deck. Last winter I brought a pot of impatiens inside and it made it through, too. I love that container you got from Jim!

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  10. I see you have been playing with the twin's trucks again. LOL! How cute!
    I just love your big stone containers and urns they have such old world charm that looks so wonderful in a garden.
    I was going to plant some perennial tulip bulbs in one of my planters after seeing how pretty yours was this spring.I wondered about keeping the tulip bulbs in the planter all year around and planting on top of them throughout the summer and if the bulbs would keep also. Worth a try I guess.

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  11. Your re-potted evergreen looks great Tatyana...although, I think it's missing some cute squirrels, those were a nice touch :P

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  12. I love container gardens. Those are so very beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing!

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  13. WoW you really have a nice variety. Love what you put in the pot from Jim's place. It looks great!!! Tatyana are those Heuchera's in the picture with the strawberry pot? My goodness what are you feeding them - they look huge. Or does that come with age? I do have one that is bigger than all my others but don't think it's as big as those look. Anyway that garden is beautiful with all of them. And I love all of your containers too. I've been taking pictures of mine and all of the birdhouses and yard stuff I got from Doris to put on a post sometime. So little time . . .

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  14. I love looking at other gardener's ideas for containers so this post was a real treat - thank you for sharing. Your pics prove that the pot makes all the difference to the display.

    Laura

    p.s. I leave my tulip bulbs in the pot and overwinter them somewhere sheltered and dry. So far so good :)

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  15. Your new container that Jim made is so unusual and pretty! I just did a post about containers. Most of mine are succulents. If I miss a day watering them...they are usually okay. :)
    I love your tulips and I am going to have to try that next spring.

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  16. That's a beauty container.

    I love how it reminds me of a copper jingle bell, with years of patina on it.

    Jen

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  17. Really pretty container gardens. I tried to click the link for Jim, but got Error 404. If you can post a re-direct, I would appreciate it. Love his pots.

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  18. I love your containers. I am not good at keeping things in pots alive because I forget to water them. Your post has made me rethink that. Maybe I will plant some containers this fall. Carla

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  19. Hi Tatyana, One of my gardening goals is to learn how to use containers effectively in the garden. Thanks for some great inspiration. -Jean

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  20. Tatyana: Your containers are very pretty and also quite my taste too! I love the pretty containers, but sometimes they are so costly that I have to restrain myself to buy them. I love the plants you put in "Jim's container", very naturally fit to the container itself. Yes, that plant looked much better after you repotted and without the stick! LOL Now you make me want to redesign some of my containers!

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  21. Hi Tatyana... your containers look great... I wish I had the discipline to do more than I do... they do take a great amount of work as I'm sure you know! I clicked on your link to Jim, the hosta guy's garden... wow and woo... this garden has so many elements that I absolutely love... what an inspiration! Thank you for sharing those wonderful pics! L

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  22. Your containers are beautiful and they really brighten up the garden. Containers are quite costly here, so a collection will be something I have to accumulate over a long time. And, how wonderful if there are squirrels that pop out of containers in my garden too ;-)

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  23. The pansies in the first photo really jump right out at you. Beautiful.

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  24. I think that one of the best gifts one can give a gardener is a unique or special container -- and the larger the better. They add such lovely and/or fun elements to the garden, and sometimes they are a main source of color as well. I love the new one you got from Jim.

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  25. Love your containers, especially your new one. Been thinking about how to plant up two big granite pots I have that I want to go either side of the front door.

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  26. Dear Tatyana, What a wonderful collection of pots you show here, but such work!! My favourite of the ones you show is the one containing the pansies. I love how the colours of the plants and the container really complement each other. I like to paint ordinary terracotta pots with masonary paint to use as containers. In that way, as you say, I can change the fashions without replacing the containers.

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  27. What great looking containers.

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  28. Lovely to see your favorite pots Tatyana. I love the little squirrels... they are so adorable when little and they add to your planting. ;>)) You have a fabulous collection... I love the old styled urns and Jim's pots too.

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  29. Love them all Tatyana! You know I'm a container girl too. You are so smart to consider the container and how best to show it (and the plants inside) off. It's a fun challenge isn't it? Sometimes I get it right, sometimes not. I like the strawberry jar unplanted and I think my favorite containers are those fancy stone ones. Just gorgeous.

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  30. Lovely selection of containers, Tatyana. I still love the tulips best. :)

    What a great capture of those two squirrels together! They look posed, really.

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  31. Wow! What pictures...the squirrels are soooo cute and I love, love, love the large rocks!
    machelle

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  32. Hi Tatyana~~ Your pots are beautiful. Love that heuchera!

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  33. Тяня, я - фонат анютиных глазок! Моя мама вышивала их на льняных дорожках, когда долгие годы лежала в гипсе после тяжелого ранения в годы войны. Несколько лет назад я подарила их местному музею.И чрезвычайно рада была увидеть твои садовые: вспомнилось детство. Спасибо.

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  34. I enjoyed seeing your favorite pots and the plants you have in them. That one Jim made is very unique. I love the different sized openings.

    I have a few pots that are pretty like yours, and some that are plain old clay or plastic ones. My favorites are the wash tubs, because they are large and don't need to be watered quite as often. I don't follow the thriller... rule, either. Sometimes I mix things up, and other times, I just plant one kind of plant. Oh, and I also don't always get certain pots planted, but have them around, anyway.

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