Create a Moveable Landscape Design with Container Gardening

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Photo: shutterbug_zzz

My first house was a charming condominium in the heart of the Sonoran desert.  The front was beautifully landscaped by the development with native plants and colorful flowers.

My back patio/yard area, however was anything but beautiful.  It consisted of two concrete slabs for patios and rocks.  Let me assure you that rocks and concrete do not make for an attractive landscape design.  Instead of hauling tons of rocks off the property, I decided to landscape with containers.

Selecting containers for your moveable landscaping projects

I am a stickler for uniformity when it comes to landscaping, so I selected containers that coordinated with one another.  They were all a deep chocolate brown and while they varied in size and shape, they all had the same ridged pattern on the sides.  This helped to create a uniform look despite having different styles and sizes of plants in the space.  For those who are open to more variety, there is no end to the type or style of container you can include.  In fact, you can even repurpose old household items to serve as containers if you like.

Plants for container gardening

Choosing the right plants is the next step.  Try to find plants that are native to your area.  Not only will they be more likely to grow and thrive, but they will probably be less costly when you purchase them from a local nursery.  For those of you who want to make your containers work for you, I also suggest using them to grow vegetables.

Photo: Roman Petruniak

Tomato plants are great container vegetables that grow tall, have beautiful green leaves, and add delicious value to your fresh salads.  Hanging planters can house lettuces and strawberry plants in addition to decorative plants too.  By putting the planters to work and having them house plants that add value to your life, as well as your landscape, you are creating an environment that you will be happy to maintain.

Move It!

Depending on the shade and sun ratios in your outdoor space, you may be able to move the planters around throughout the growing season.  Creating different looks and spaces is much easier when you have moveable containers than when all of your plants are planted in the ground.  For those heavy planters, put casters underneath before filling them with soil.  This will make it easy to relocate plants to create different looks and moods throughout the year.  It also makes it easier to bring plants indoors during inclement weather.

Photo: Gideon Strauss

Container gardens are versatile

Creating a container garden may take a bit more time and resources than simply planting everything in the ground, but it gives you much more versatility.  You will not be restricted by the shape and style of your landscape design, but will be free to create your own.

Want a romantic spot in the corner of your patio? Simply wheel over a few potted palms to block the view of the chaise lounge.  Need to create more room for a party?  Move the planters to the outer edge of the patio to create a warm, inviting, and open space.  Do not be restricted by set landscaping anymore; let container gardening free your decorating enthusiasm.

*** regularly features articles by Alyssa Davis on decorating with cello metal wall art and coffee wall decor.


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