This past spring I made a trip to the local garden shop to purchase some new flowerpots for my front porch and deck. While looking at the many different types of flowerpots, a salesperson approached and asked if I needed help. I told her I was looking for some new flowerpots, but was having a hard time deciding. She asked me a few questions about where I was going to place them and what type of plants I was going to put in them. I thought about this and realized I was not sure, and that I needed to do some planning. I thanked her and left without buying any flowerpots. At home, I started making a plan for the two areas where I wanted to put new flowerpots, my front porch and the deck on the back of my house.
My Front Porch
My front porch, which is about 16 feet long and 6 feet wide, only gets a few hours of sun in the morning and the rest of the day is all shade, so I knew I had to put plants there that did well in shade. Several different varieties of begonias and impatiens would do well in this area. I have a small wicker bistro set and a two-seat cushioned bench on the porch. Any type of pot would go well with the furniture, so I decided on ceramic and plastic pots.
As the front porch is where visitors enter my home, I wanted some decorative ceramic flowerpots that would catch the eye. Glazed flowerpots, with or without a design, attract attention just by their shine alone. They are excellent for begonias and impatiens.
Plastic pots cost less and work well in covered areas because they do not do well in full sun or frost. The heat from the sun and cold from the frost can make them fade and crack. Plastic is also a good pick for non-edible plants, such as flowers because the plastic may contain a petroleum base.
My deck is 10 feet by 10 feet and gets morning and evening shade and midday sun. Because I like marigolds and petunias, I decided to split the area and intersperse these two flowers with some garden herb and vegetable plants. For furniture, I have two Adirondack chairs, a gas grill, and wooden bench. I decided on terracotta and wooden pots for this area.
Terracotta pots are excellent for herbs and vegetables, but loose moisture quickly indicating the plants would need frequent watering. I could also decorate these pots with paints or mosaics. Because I cannot be 100 percent sure that the wooden pots have not been pressure treated, I will use them for the flowers only.
Choosing my Pots
For my porch, I purchased five ceramic flowerpots of various sizes and colors (I made sure the colors complimented each other), one long plastic flowerpot to put on the racks I have over my porch railing, and two smaller round plastic pots. I made sure all of them were the correct size for the flowers they were to hold. I planted pink, red and orange begonias and pink, purple and white impatiens.
Moving onto my deck, I purchased two large terracotta pots, one to hold two tomato plants and one to hold several different types of herbs. I purchased one long wooden flowerbox and four round ones for my flowers. In the long box, I put a display of red, white and blue petunias to help celebrate the summer’s patriotic holidays. This one went on racks over the deck railing. In the others, I planted yellow and orange marigolds and placed them at different areas of the deck. I made sure to put one flowerpot of marigolds next to my tomato plants as marigolds deter aphids, a known pest to tomatoes.
NOTE: If you have a patio, try to purchase flowerpots that compliment the brick or stone of the patio. Try groupings of several different sized and colored pots in one area with a variety of flowers.
Click here for more information on creating mosaic flowerpots.
Click here for more information on companion plantings.
Sources: Whites Nursery, Personal Experience