Silueta Bilingual Magazine
By Judy Brinkerhoff
Planting in containers introduces instant color, texture, and often fragrance to our lives. The immediate gratification of "exterior decorating" is part of container gardening's appeal. With little effort and time expended, you can purchase pots, soil,
and plants, and have a spur-of-the-moment garden... one that neither deer nor gophers will bother. It's right at hand... no heavy hoses to drag, no irrigation system to install. An unsightly plant past its prime can be moved out of sight until it's ready
to again flaunt its blooms. And most plants can be grown in containers, at least for awhile. Some plants need room to expand, and a container will soon cramp its style. Here are a few ways in which container gardens can be used:
- EXTERIOR DECORATION... Patios, decks, rooftops, even driveways and walkways are the perfect stage on which to choreograph an arrangement of container plantings. They will brighten up any hardscaping with the luster of greenery or a blaze of color.
- ALONG WALKWAYS AND PATHS... Plants in containers help us unwind as we enter our home from a driveway, carport, or the street. They serve as a transition or buffer zone between the outside world and our home-oasis.
- ADORN YOUR FRONT ENTRY... Container plants act as a welcome, greeting you with their colors and fragrance each time you enter or leave your house. To guests that visit your home ,they are a reception committee that expresses your love of the outdoor w
- PRIVACY SCREENS... can be created by using a wall of container plants, either in the form of hanging plants, or a row of thick-foliaged shrubs. They also act to shade an area, or as buffers against wind.
- DECORATE WINDOWS AND SILLS... As you would use curtains inside, so you can embellish the windows and sills outside with container plants, which can be viewed from outdoors or in. Window boxes and window ledges overflowing with bright blossoms add colo
r and elegance to a drab exterior.
- HANGING PLANTS... become aerial gardens that blow and dance in the breeze, creating a movement of color and texture. Acting as privacy screens or sun shades, they allow an up-close view of the beauty of blossoms, and of the bees, hummingbirds, and but
terflies that visit them for nectar.
- A LIVING PALETTE... Plants in containers offer a medium in which the artist in us can compose a living mixed bouquet. When planting, keep in mind heights, textures (full or airy), colors, and whether the plant has a trailing or upright habit. Consider
the bloom cycle, and plant to flower in succession. Your bright bouquet-in-a-container can become a focal point in any part of your landscaping.
- SEASONAL CHANGES... Emphasize and highlight seasonal changes. As set director, you can spotlight some of the season's showiest plants. Feature the satin-petaled blossoms of spring bulbs... the sunstruck brilliance of summer annuals... the glow of chry
santhemums and autumn foliage... the reds of the winter berries of pyracantha and holly... the Christmas smells of conifers.
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