Container gardening adds dimension to your landscape

Living Space

A beautiful garden is a joy to behold and makes your home feel connected to the outdoors. One layer of a beautiful garden includes containers. Adding container plantings to your home and landscape adds an additional layer and dimension of greenery against the lawn and planting beds. With the right containers, and when placed strategically, containers can also become focal points in your landscape.

No fuss

A creative way to use planters is to find a spot where a hardy plant will grow well and that’s in a space that catches your eye. It may be at one end of a sidewalk, the yard or next to the front door. Container gardens don’t always have to be annuals that you replace each spring or fall. Instead, try adding plants that will stay year-round or regrow in the spring. To get started, select planters that work well with your home’s style. If your home is traditional, a large Italian ceramic pot fits the bill. A square metal or ceramic container would work well with a contemporary home.

For modern style, try a low or no-maintenance Blue Glow agave plant ( Its striking appearance, linear look and exotic blue-gray coloring outlined in red make this plant a real attention-getter on a walkway or as a vignette opposite a window. Traditional clay or glazed ceramic planters will look wonderful filled with Little Ollie Dwarf Olive shrubs will stay green year-round, happily tolerate heat and cold, and require little maintenance ( Check with your local grower or nursery for hardy plants that will do well in containers year-round where you live.


Big, beautiful annuals

One way to dress up those hardy varieties and add a punch of color is to create a grouping of planters. Pair a year-round container plant with a perennial potted plant and fill in with a pot of colorful annuals to add dimension. Select planters of varying heights and shapes to add interest. Look for plants that will also grow in varying heights and widths. A terrific large annual that grows tall and attracts attention with showing red-tinged green leaves is a Dwarf Cavendish Banana Tree ( These easy-to-grow plants will fill an empty corner of the patio or garden and look terrific all summer long. In some climates, they’ll freeze back and then regrow the next year.

Grasses are another large annual that have interest and grow quickly. Look for annuals that trail, spike and bloom to make your containers interesting in texture and shape.

Bright ideas

Fill in your containers with the unexpected, such as bulbs. Try something exotic like spotted or black-colored elephant ears. They’ll grow quickly and can be removed in the fall and stored over the winter. Caladiums come in a wide variety of styles and colors and every variety of speckle and splotch. Try a white and green variety, add a trailing companion, such as English ivy, and fill in with white impatiens. Cannas are also great space fillers that add a burst of color and may come back year after year.

(For more information, contact Kathryn Weber through her website,