Monday, November 12, 2012

Taking the Container Garden into Autumn

This year, I didn't plant very many containers due to the drought. It was just too tough keeping them watered. My one expection is the planter box that hangs on the back porch rail. This spring I went for a blowsy romantic look in soft pastels. My husband has a thing for snapdragons, so they are always part of this combination.

Because it's just outside my back door, it gets watered frequently. I used the potting mix from work which is a nice blend that includes a low grade fertilizer and a wetting agent. I also added a liberal dose of a slow release granular fertilizer. I think I achieved the goal!

We're in the midst of autumn, and since I was only planting one container, I splurged on changing it out for fall. I confess, I hate mums. They're so fragile that the stems break as soon as you pick them up, much less manuever them into a narrow planter. Although I love a romantic summer container, I prefer to be a little edgier in autumn.

Blocking the design in chunks

I went for a moody blue sort of theme. The first thing that called to me were the sky blue pansies. They just remind me of a clear autumn day. I paired it with the Black Pearl peppers and purple cabbage. Now I needed a vertical element in the juncus and a little pop of color with the calibrachoa.

The nice part about this planter is that I can lift it out of the rack and slip it indoors when the temperatures get below freezing. The peppers aren't particularly cold hardy, but were too cool to pass up. At some point, they'll succumb, but by then it'll be time to think about swapping in winter greens and berries.

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