Suggestions for planting large east facing containers (dry - under eaves)

Discussion in 'Garden Design and Plant Suggestions' started by westcoastgarden, Aug 4, 2007.

  1. westcoastgarden

    westcoastgarden Active Member

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    Maple Ridge, Canada
    Hi,

    I have just purchased two large fiberglass stone/cement look-alike planters. They are round and approx. 2 1/2 feet tall and about two feet in diametre.

    I am going to place them on either side of my east facing garage door. The southeast corner will get a bit more sun (from the side) than the northeast corner.

    The house is a rancher and I have wide overhangs, therefore the only water these planters will get will be when I water them.

    I am looking for some planting suggestions. I'd like at least a couple of evergreen - winter interest plants in each. They don't have to be planted identically - but I would like similar heights and shapes.

    The containers each have one drainage hole in the bottom - about an inch in diameter. Normally I drill lots of additional holes but I am thinking I should leave these alone?

    Also, I am wondering if I should mix in water crystals. I normally don't like them, but thought they might be appropriate in this circumstance.

    I have quite a few dwarf conifers still in pots but I am not sure this would be a suitable place to put them?

    Thanks!

    WCG
     
  2. Debby

    Debby Active Member 10 Years

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    I think you could simply centre a spiky yucca or New Zeland flax/phormium in the middle of some variegated ivy, which would both fill in and flow over the container. I don't think the crystals would be necessary--just occasional watering through the seasons. For changing colour, you could simply set in pots of blooming plants in season: primroses, tulips, gerberas, etc. Hey, I might try this myself!
     
  3. Debby

    Debby Active Member 10 Years

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    A dwarf conifer centered in the pot instead of the yucca or phormium would work well too.
     
  4. MdeHaan

    MdeHaan Member

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    Try a sarcococca- evergreen, fragrant tiny white flowers in late winter.
     
  5. Karalyn

    Karalyn Active Member

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    I haven't used the water crystals yet, but plan to. What is it about them that you donot like?
     
  6. Debby

    Debby Active Member 10 Years

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    Trouble with water crystals (and potting soil that comes with them) is that in the cold, wet winters, roots can rot. I think they're fine for pots with annuals for summer, but not year-round.
     
  7. KarinL

    KarinL Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    I would go with one upright conifer in each for starters. Suitable fastigiate conifers could include yew (Taxus), Cepahlotaxus, Juniper, and Cupressus sempervirens cultivars; they come in gold and green in most cases to permit quite a bit of selection. Given the diameter I might also do a weeping conifer: Tsuga or Cedrus deodara cultivars for example, or even a creeping juniper. For spring and summer spruce-up I like hardy Geraniums, which never look that good in the ground but lean and drape attractively out of pots. You can also do something like epimedium which is hard to appreciate down at ground level.

    The difficulty with containers like this is whether to centre the upright plant. I tend to put it toward the back or one side if the surface area is large, and in the middle if the container narrows up at the top.
     
  8. joclyn

    joclyn Rising Contributor

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    i like the idea of the yucca - they will add interest all year round and the flowers in the summer are spectacular!!

    hardy geranium would be a nice accent - and they tend to bloom all summer. i agree with karen - the hardy geraniums just don't look nice in the ground and planters are just perfect for their draping nature.

    for added interest, you can put some annuals in - something different each year as well as changing out mid season. that will give some variety.
     
  9. Karalyn

    Karalyn Active Member

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    Thank you for responding. I probably wouldn't have that problem as we don't get a lot of moisture in SW Idaho. But I was thinking of using them for an annual display pot anyway. So your answer helps a lot.
     

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