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When the air turns chilly in fall, gardeners often discard, propagate, or find a home in the ground for their outdoor potted plants.
Interested in stepping-up your container gardening skills?Buy Container Gardening today for 86 inspiring design ideas.Get your copy here! One pot, four seasonsYucca and bergenia are the core plants in this container, shining in summer and fall.
Golden creeping Jenny spills over the pot's edge and Japanese pieris has colorful new growth. Golden creeping Jenny ( Lysimachia nummularia ‘Aurea’, Zones 4–8) is truly a reliable performer in a container. This deer-resistant shrub ( Pieris japonica and cvs., Zones 6–8) is an excellent candidate for containers. With its green, glossy, oval leaves, bergenia ( Bergenia cordifolia and cvs., Zones 3–8) is one of my favorite plants because it is a strong grower that provides a bold element in a container design. Another shrub that performs nicely in a container is variegated redtwig dogwood ( Cornus alba ‘Elegantissima’, Zones 2–8). The dominant feature of ‘Fuldaglut’ sedum ( Sedum spurium ‘Fuldaglut’, Zones 4–9) is the bronze red leaf color that becomes red in winter. I really love white anemones, so they must go on my shopping list for white gorgeousness later in the year. Peonies are another flower which people consider poor value because they only bloom for a short time, but there can be few more joyful sights than emerging peony foliage, especially if it pops up next to primroses.
As you’ll have seen on my post 9 Things to Do Differently in the Garden This Year, wasabi is hard to find, expensive and likes to grow in the shade. The wasabi is looking a bit nibbled, so is a good reminder for me to do an anti-slug and snail exercise this weekend. When you plan your garden, think about what you will see from the house at different times of year. Get the Middlesized Garden delivered to your inbox every Sunday morning by leaving your email in the box on the top right. The way you prune garden trees will make a big difference to your garden's privacy and light. In winter, when the bergenia has died back, stems from yellow and redtwig dogwoods add to the yucca's colorful diaplay. I particularly like this cultivar because it grows into a graceful pyramid rather than turning into a meatballshaped shrub.It’s tough, but living in a container will keep it smaller than its normal 5-foot height and 3-foot width.
Though its evergreen foliage provides interest in all seasons, the spring growth on Japanese pieris is especially striking, varying in color from glossy red to salmon pink to creamy white, depending on the cultivar.In winter, the flower buds are showy—usually dark red, with some opening to shades of pink. The leaves are anywhere from 10 to 20 inches long and 6 to 8 inches wide, and turn a gorgeous burgundy in fall. Choose a pot with a drainage hole in the bottom and made of fiberglass, lead, iron, heavy plastic, or stone. Its leaves have white margins and grayish green centers, and the bright red stems shine in winter, particularly if given an evergreen backdrop. The delicately scalloped foliage has larger leaves than most of the species, and in late summer, it is topped with cerise blooms that last as long as three weeks.

These scillas, given to me by a friend, have now convinced me that this border would look good with more white planting.
I am asking the gardening world’s permission to be extravagant and dig the pink ones out and put a whole load of white in.
Personally, I am very happy that it’s so prolific and determined, as it makes a wonderful foil for fresh green spring foliage. It’s coming into its second year, and has thrived on complete neglect in a shady corner of the veg bed. We planned the whole garden so that the main colour was in one big bed that could be seen from the kitchen window. These tulips are planted at the far end of the bed that’s seen from the kitchen window, but they still have an uplifting impact every time we look out.
And let us know what you’re hoping to achieve in your garden this summer, either here or on the Middlesized Garden Facebook page.
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In spring, before the yucca and bergenia have returned to form, pansies and lamium steal the show.I hightly recommend 'Golden Sword' yucca (Yucca filamentosa ‘Golden Sword’, Zones 4–11) because it combines easily with so many plants. Delicate 3- to 6-inch-long racemes of white, urn-shaped blossoms appear in early spring, and they bear a slight fragrance. The upright, narrow habit of this cultivar of our native arborvitae fits the bill as the vertical accent that many containers need.The shape and texture of its foliage make it easy to combine with other plants. Most terra-cotta will crack in cold temperatures, but I have had luck with glazed pottery.Use a good potting soil. A single ‘Elegantissima’ growing in a 24-inchwide, blue ceramic pot has worked for three years as a focal point in one of our borders.The shrub’s variegated leaves are a handsome foil to the hydrangeas in the ground on either side of it, and a mass of variegated Solomon’s seal near the base of the container conceals it most of the year. Their lobed foliage can be showy, often possessing silver veins through green or purple leaves. At only 6 inches tall and 12 inches wide, this sedum dresses up a container’s edge and even makes a good cut flower for small bouquets. White shows up best – darker or more subtle colours tend to get lost in the brickwork. But you don’t need to worry about it taking over as it disappears completely from around late June onwards. In April the colour comes from the bulbs at the furthest end from the window, but they still make quite an impact. This year I’ve got 42 seed trays on the go in the greenhouse, everything from Bergamot to Yarrow. By taking advantage of this characteristic, you can reduce the amount of time and money you spend on your pots. Its 2-inch-wide, swordlike leaves have margins that are thin and dark green, centers of golden yellow, and curly fibers along the edges. If possible, periodically rotate the pot to balance the plant’s exposure to light and to avoid the development of bare sides.
There are mixes specifically made for use in containers, which provide the essential drainage that plants living in pots need.Stop feeding in fall.

The dogwood’s deepest color appears on young stems, so remove old branches in early spring. Heucheras are particularly suited for containers because they like well-drained soil and recover easily from winter. It works well in containers because it easily combines with most colors and the branches arch elegantly over the rim of a pot. Garden consultant Matt Jackson suggests that I limit the number of plants I use, but use them in large swathes or blocks. All this (and another clump elsewhere) came from three plants I bought at Great Dixter in 2005. Your containers can provide you with year-round interest, depending on the plants you choose, and you can lend consistency to your designs.For a plant, life in a container is much different than one in the ground. Having a spiky, architectural shape, it grows 2 to 3 feet high with equal spread.This yucca tolerates some shade but thrives in sunny, dry conditions. If you use a water-soluble fertilizer, stop feeding your plants about six to eight weeks before your first frost date. Place this shrub in full sun to half shade, and watch out for an attack by Japanese beetles in summer. Most heucheras grow into a 12- to 18-inch-diameter mound and toss up flower panicles with white, pink, or red blossoms. Containers can provide excellent drainage, but the plants depend on you for water and nutrients. In summer, creamy white, fragrant flowers emerge from the center of the plant on 3- to 6-foot-tall stems. Shrubs and larger perennials often stay smaller in a pot, though this depends on the plant, climate, and container. Also, containers don’t insulate a plant’s roots from winter temperatures.The general rule of thumb for container-plant survival through the winter is that the plant should be hardy to two zones colder than your USDA Hardiness Zone. But in my Maryland garden, which barely qualifies as Zone 7, I have successfully overwintered plants that shouldn’t have made it and I have failed with some that should have. Do not water frozen pots because the plants are unable to absorb the water.Apply an antidesiccant.
Through trial and error, I have found a wide array of plants that can live year after year in a container. Use products such as Wilt-Pruf on broadleaf evergreens and conifers to protect against damage from winter winds.Repot every few years. Though some plants will live longer in a container, repot your plants every three years to be on the safe side. Close Close United States Canada Mexico United Kingdom Spain Australia Hong Kong Taiwan Singapore Visit our global site Close Get $5 in Free CASHBACK with your first order!

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