The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Perfect Planter Box for Your Garden
Choosing planters is important because these containers will be your plants' home for a long time. So choose carefully!
But with so many options, how do you know which planters are the best for your plants? In this guide, let's explore the different types of planter boxes for your garden and which ones work best for your plants. Continue reading below to find out:
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Factors to Consider When Choosing Planters for the Garden
Size: First things first, consider the size of your planters. Think about the plants you want to grow and their root systems. Larger planters are ideal for trees, shrubs, and larger perennials, while smaller ones are perfect for herbs, annual flowers, and succulents. Make sure the planter provides enough space for your plants to thrive.
Material: Planters come in various materials, each with its own charm and functionality. Terracotta and clay are classic choices with a rustic feel, but can be heavy and fragile. Plastic and resin planters are lightweight, durable, and affordable, making them practical for many gardeners. Wood planters lend a natural look but may require more maintenance. Consider the aesthetic and practicality of the material for your garden's style and climate.
Drainage: Proper drainage is crucial for plant health. Ensure your planters have drainage holes or the option to add them. Standing water in planters can lead to root rot, so it's essential to let excess water escape. If you love a planter without drainage holes, use it as a decorative cachepot and place a smaller, well-draining pot inside.
Climate Considerations: Think about your local climate when selecting planters. If you live in a hot, sunny area, consider materials that don't heat up too much in the sun, like light-colored plastic or ceramic with a reflective glaze. Materials that can withstand frost without cracking, like concrete or fiberglass, might be a better choice in colder regions.
Style and Aesthetics: Your planters should complement your garden's overall style. Consider the color, shape, and design of the planters with your outdoor space. Match them with the architectural elements of your home or create a contrast to add visual interest. Be creative and have fun with your choices to enhance the garden's aesthetics.
Mobility Matters: Do you want to move your planters around the garden or patio? If so, consider planters with built-in wheels or ones that are lightweight enough to transport easily. This flexibility can be convenient for rearranging your garden layout or protecting sensitive plants from extreme weather.
Budget: Your budget is a practical factor to consider. While high-quality, durable planters may be an investment upfront, they can last for many seasons, making them cost-effective in the long run. Be mindful of your budget and balance it with the longevity of the planters.
Maintenance: Different materials and finishes require varying levels of maintenance. Wooden planters may need sealing or staining periodically, while plastic ones are generally low-maintenance. Consider how much time and effort you're willing to invest in caring for your planters.
Choosing planters for your garden should be a fun and creative process. It's all about finding the right balance between functionality, aesthetics, and your gardening needs. So, take your time, explore your options, and let your personality shine through your garden design.
Different Types of Planter Boxes for Your Garden
Various types of planter boxes are available, each with its unique style and functionality. Here are some popular types:
Raised Garden Beds: Large planter boxes are elevated off the ground. They provide excellent drainage and make gardening more accessible as you don't have to bend over as much. Raised beds are perfect for growing vegetables, herbs, and flowers.
Window Boxes: Window boxes are typically mounted under windowsills or on railings, adding a charming touch to homes. They're perfect for small plants, herbs, or trailing flowers and can enhance the aesthetics of your home's exterior.
Trellis Planter Boxes: These combine a planter with a built-in trellis, offering vertical gardening opportunities. They are fantastic for climbing plants like tomatoes, cucumbers, or flowering vines.
Hanging Planter Boxes: These are designed to be suspended from hooks or brackets. They're great for small spaces like balconies or patios and can hold various trailing plants, creating a lush and green display.
Window Seat Planter Boxes: These are integrated into seating or benches, often beneath windows. They combine functionality and aesthetics, allowing you to enjoy the view of your garden from a comfortable spot.
Deck and Rail Planters: These are designed to fit over deck railings or balusters, providing a simple and stylish way to add greenery to your outdoor living space. They come in various shapes and sizes.
Privacy Screen Planters: These are tall and wide planter boxes designed to create a natural privacy screen with the help of tall plants or shrubs. They're excellent for defining spaces in your garden or on your patio.
Herb Garden Planter: These boxes are divided into multiple sections, making them ideal for growing different herbs in one container. They're perfect for culinary enthusiasts who want fresh herbs within arm's reach.
Corner Planter Boxes: These fit neatly into corners, using otherwise wasted space. They're great for adding a touch of greenery to tight spots in your garden or on your patio.
Modular Planter Boxes: These consist of individual boxes that can be stacked or arranged in various ways to create custom configurations. They're versatile and perfect for gardeners who enjoy experimenting with design.
Trough Planters: These are long and narrow planters, often used for planting rows of flowers, herbs, or small shrubs. They can also be used to define edges or pathways in your garden.
Self-Watering Planters: These come with a built-in reservoir that allows the plants to draw up water as needed. They are great for those who want to minimize watering frequency or for plants that require consistent moisture.
Plants that are Best Grown in Planter Boxes
Planter boxes are deeper and broader than traditional pots, so these will work for a wide range of plants. Here is a list of plants that will thrive in planter boxes:
- Herbs: Herbs like basil, rosemary, thyme, and oregano thrive in planter boxes. They're convenient for culinary use and can add fragrance and greenery to your outdoor space.
- Strawberries: Strawberry plants do well in planter boxes. Their shallow root system makes them ideal for containers, and they produce delicious fruit.
- Leafy Greens: Varieties of lettuce, spinach, arugula, and other leafy greens are excellent choices for planter boxes. They're quick to grow and can be harvested continuously.
- Tomatoes: Compact or bush-type tomato varieties, such as determinate cherry tomatoes, work well in planter boxes. Make sure to provide support for the plants as they grow.
- Peppers: Bell peppers, chili peppers, and sweet peppers can thrive in planter boxes, provided they receive adequate sunlight and support.
- Carrots: Carrots grow nicely in deep planter boxes with loose soil. Choose shorter carrot varieties for containers.
- Radishes: Radishes are quick-growing and do well in planter boxes. You can harvest them in just a few weeks.
- Chives and Green Onions: These easy-to-grow herbs are perfect for planter boxes. They require minimal space and add flavor to your dishes.
- Dwarf Fruit Trees: Some dwarf fruit tree varieties, like dwarf apple or citrus trees, can be planted in larger planter boxes, providing a small-scale orchard feel.
- Bamboo: Certain bamboo species, especially clumping varieties, can be grown in planter boxes, adding a touch of elegance and privacy to your garden.
- Ornamental Grasses: Tall grasses like pampas grass or feather reed grass can be used for decorative purposes in planter boxes.
- Dwarf Shrubs: Compact shrubs like boxwood or dwarf hydrangeas can be grown in planter boxes to add structure and greenery to your garden.
- Vining Plants: Vines like clematis or ivy can be grown vertically in planter boxes with trellises or supports.
Bulbs: Spring-blooming bulbs like tulips, daffodils, and crocuses can be planted in layers in deep planter boxes for a burst of color.
Perennials: Many perennial flowers, such as hostas, ferns, and astilbes, can thrive in planter boxes if provided with the right conditions.
When choosing plants for your planter boxes, consider the size of the box, the amount of sunlight the area receives, and the climate in your region. Ensure your planter boxes have good drainage, and use quality potting mix to provide the best growing environment for your chosen plants.
Planter boxes make a terrific home for all types of plants, even bulbs with deep roots! Mixing and matching different types of planters can also create an interesting and dynamic garden design.
Choose the type of planter that suits your garden's style, the plants you want to grow, and your personal preferences. Of course, not any planter box will do. Buy only from a trusted brand to get the most out of these planters. Choose planters that are made to last. ECOGardener’s raised beds come in classic, tiered and elevated styles.