What do you plant in containers?

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#41
Bernie, you are right! That was Plato who said "necessity is the mother of invention," but if I DARED to do the sort of thing you've done, mark my words: I'd have an eviction notice on my door real fast. The people who tend the lawn around here (they think they are gardeners, but they don't speak English,) didn't like my flowers planted in every available space of ground. I planted a bunch of cannas because there is bare dirt outside our apartment. There's a drainage grate that's supposed to catch water to keep the sidewalk and our apartments from flooding, but the grate can only hold so much, and we still get flooded anyway.

I adore your set up though!!!!!!!!! And not having to bend over to weed or harvest is a real added bonus. You probably don't have to do much weeding with that.

You are SUCH an inspiration! I can't wait to see more pictures! You are a real genius!
 
#42
Unfortunately, my landlord doesn't want me to plant stuff in the ground any more (there's still stuff there, but I guess they've excepted that,) so I'm forced to grow almost everything in containers.

I'm wondering what other people grow in containers. Maybe I can get some ideas. Do you plant multiple things in a container to give it the illusion of being a flower bed?
Hey plantlover, We live in a rental also. We have built 2 planter boxes, 2 1/2x5. I have tomatoes and jalapenos in one, the other has lettuce in the other. We are building another this week. I will put cukes and squash in it. I am putting carrots in with the lettuce this week as well.
Hubby and I bought some pots today and some flowers for them. Going to try some nasturshims and zinnas. Oh, I can't remember what all we got today but I will let you know tomorrow. Kim
 

KyGal

New Member
#43
I have wine barrel's that I plant in so that if I Move I can just load them up and take them with me...I plant just about everything in them and I LOVE them!
 
#44
Plantlover as others have said you can plant almost anything in containers. My neighbor’s hedge sapped the life out of my veggies and the ground here is dreadful so my entire veggie garden is in apple bins or some kind of container. DH and DS cut the bins in half so they are each 2’ X 4’ and 2’ deep. I lined them with blue tarps to keep the wood from rotting then I put five gallon buckets, milk jugs old flower pots and anything else I could get my hands on that were plant safe and would not decompose in the bottoms to take up space. I then filled them with 90% compost and 10% garden soil. I add more compost every spring. We have hot dry winds here too and our summers get up to 100+ so watering is a constant problem. I have drip irrigation for my veggies and a lot more. You don't need to pay big bucks for it. I bought the punch and the drippers and put them into regular old garden hoses most of which I find in other people's trash. In the veggie garden I have misters for seed starting and drippers for watering once the plants take off. I space things according to the square foot gardening method so watering from above is nearly impossible. I have five tree pots planted with veggies and flowers also. You could paint the tree pots so they blend in and have them so close together that no one would guess it isn’t a flower bed.

I recently found a cracked fire pit in the local nurseries dumpster. Yes it took this old gal some doing but I did get it out and into my car. I can’t wait for spring so I can plant in it.

Every year I refresh my smaller pots with about half new potting mix and half old. I don’t like to use peanuts because they end up mixed in the soil. Instead I use milk jugs, soda bottles and cans. They are easier to fish out. I also line my smaller pots with diapers. Its cheaper then those crystals they sell to be mixed with your soil to absorb water. The diapers absorb water and keep the pots from drying out so fast. Also the plastic keeps water from draining to quickly. I always find adult diapers at thrift shops where it’s much cheaper. If I can’t find enough I buy the cheapest thing I can find baby or adult diapers work great. I wouldn’t use them on anything edible, not sure what kind of chemicals are in those.
Here is part of my veggie garden from last spring. Tomatoes are in the orange tub and black tree pot.
Hey Bernie, Does lining the beds create a problem with moldy soil? I thought about lining my beds but I thought that might be a problem. I thought that everything had to have good drainage. I am new to this container gardening. My beds do get dry fast. They are about 18 inches deep. I am going to plant some flowers in some pots today. Soil is the expensive thing for me. I was wondering what I could do about that?

So many things to learn!!! :confused::eek: I need a lot of help. I'm so glad that Spider_Lily invited me here. Kim
 

PRH

Active Member
#45
cacti is a good 1! ( just for fun once,I tried regular grass that you see in lawns around that need to be mowed every so often! After the patch grew,it needed a hair cut. I began cutting away and within a couple of weeks time,the grass was dead -- odd one and I still scratch my head over that event )
I love different bonsai plants,so I group some of them together within a rain barrel I have and come Fall - I have fall decorations ( leaves and all ) pretty cool actually!! ( You can have decorations years round for other Holidays or events I imagine --- the sky's the limit with that )
Just something to keep me alittle busy plus the complimants I get over it is an added bonus to the work done too! ;)
 
#46
Today I planted some Zinna seeds in large pots. In my box with my lettuce I planted some carrots. The other box with the tomatoes and peppers, I planted some Marigolds and a few Nasturtium seeds. I heard that the Nasturtuims help to keep the tomato horn worms away. I hope so!!!
 
#47
Hey Bernie, Does lining the beds create a problem with moldy soil? I thought about lining my beds but I thought that might be a problem. I thought that everything had to have good drainage. I am new to this container gardening. My beds do get dry fast. They are about 18 inches deep. I am going to plant some flowers in some pots today. Soil is the expensive thing for me. I was wondering what I could do about that?

So many things to learn!!! :confused::eek: I need a lot of help. I'm so glad that Spider_Lily invited me here. Kim
Kim these are wooden boxes that are two feet deep. They have large gaps in the bottoms for drainage. Also the bottom foot or so of the boxes are filled with buckets, old pots and milk jugs so there is very good drainage. No mold at all. I should have said I only lined the sides of the boxed with the tarps, not the bottoms. I am sure eventually the bottoms will rot out but as long as the sides hold up that's fine with me.
You have mentioned beds, boxes and pots. And I don’t want to give you any bad advice. My boxes are lager so I treat them like raised beds and use compost and soil in them. Every spring I dig out the top six to eight inches of soil, add raw compost then put the soil back on top.

You can’t use soil in small containers. The soil will get hard and won’t drain properly.

When I lived in your neck of the woods I had raised beds. The soil was sandy and dried out fast too. Adding lots of compost to the soil really helped and mulch helped too.

Potting soil can get very expensive but you have no choice but to use it in your pots. Here is how I save $$$. I reuse my potting soil. Every year I refresh the old soil by mixing with new soil about ½ & ½. I find that most potted plants don’t need much more then six to eight inches of soil to develop a good root system. I fill the bottoms of big pots with pop cans, water bottles, old pots etc. to take up space and to make the pots lighter. Some people use packing peanuts but I don’t like how they get mixed in with the potting soil when I try to reuse it.

This may sound crazy but I line the sides of my pots with disposable diapers. These absorb water so I don’t need to water so often when it gets hot. I think it keeps the soil a bit cooler as well. (I tried using those moisture absorbing crystals sold to be mixed with potting soil but they are too expensive for the number of pots I have. I find adult diapers at thrift shops or I buy the cheapest ones I can find in the market, either adult or child diapers.) Place the plastic side of the diaper against the inside of the pot. Fill with potting soil and plant. Just make sure the diapers are buried completely or they will act as a wick and draw the moisture out of your soil. I usually trim the diaper so I’m only left with the center part that actually absorbs moisture. If you open up a diaper you will find it is full of tiny little crystals. I suspect they are the same as those crystals sold to be added to potting soil. Please don’t use diapers wiht anything edible as I am sure they contain chemicals if nothing else perfume.

I hope this helps. If it’s not clear let me know and I’ll try to explain better. Good luck.
 
#48
Thanks Bernie. It does help! It gets the wheels to turning!! :)

I do have another question through? Here comes the pest!! Yikes.

My boxes are about 18 inches deep. I do have some trouble keeping them from drying out. Because we rent we have to have the boxes on top of the ground. I would have liked to bury the boards a little but we can't. I put paper down in the beds befor we put compost, potting soil, and some mulch in them. My problem is that water runs out from the edges. What do you suggest putting around the edges to help keep water in? I thought of getting some of that rubber edging that goes around beds. What do you suggest? I would like to use something inexpensive!!!
 

lynpenny

Super Moderator
Staff member
#49
my son and daughter in law are moving soon. I have a black magic ee and a I'm going to put some basil in a pot for them to take to their new apartment. They thought they had an apt a few blocks from us but the apt. people kept uping the deposits so they said no. They are still looking and have a sofa in my garage. Hopefully they will find one soon.
 
#50
Hey Lyn, I palnted some for my daughter. They live her inlaws for now. Husband is in new job. They may be able to move back our way in October. They don't want to move in somewhere and then move again. She is making some planter boxes and wants to grow some things in pots. I started some basil for her. I found some purple basil the other day and started that too! Moms take care of their kids, don't they!!! :)
 
#51
Thanks Bernie. It does help! It gets the wheels to turning!! :)

I do have another question through? Here comes the pest!! Yikes.

My boxes are about 18 inches deep. I do have some trouble keeping them from drying out. Because we rent we have to have the boxes on top of the ground. I would have liked to bury the boards a little but we can't. I put paper down in the beds befor we put compost, potting soil, and some mulch in them. My problem is that water runs out from the edges. What do you suggest putting around the edges to help keep water in? I thought of getting some of that rubber edging that goes around beds. What do you suggest? I would like to use something inexpensive!!!
Kim you are not a pest. I'm happy to help if I'm able.
I am not sure how you plan to use the edging. I am assuming the boxes are open to the ground on the bottoms. Is the water running out from under the box or through the cracks on the sides?
If they weren't already planted I'd suggest you line the boxes with some sort of plastic. Trash bags or like I did the cheap $1 store tarps would be inexpensive. Cut them to fit and over lap where needed. I would lay it so 4 to 6 inches would be flat on the bottom and bring the rest up the sides. The weight of the soil should keep it in place and stop the water from running out. I am also wondering if your soil is to light to absorb and hold the water. Potting soil sounds to light for such a big container maybe more compost would help.
Still wondering how you plan to use the edging. Sorry it may be a great idea but I just can't picture it.
 
#52
The water is running out the bottome edges. I think that you are right the soil is probably to light. It has gotten a little better but I still need something. For the edging I thought about putting it a little in the ground along the edges, right up against the boxes. I don't know what to do. I think I am going to get some more compost.
Hubby is build another box for me!!! I will line those before I add any soil to them. I am so excited about this venture!!! I'm just about to bust!!!!!! I will have to get some picture uploaded so you can see what I have!!
My lettuce is doing really good though. I'm cutting some for our salad tonight!!! Yay!! :)
 
#53
Kim if the box is open on the bottom break up the soil a bit. Take a fork or a pick and just poke a lot of holes in the ground. That should help the water be absorbed into the soil instead of just running out along the hard packed soil. The soil in your box should be able to draw moisture up from the moist dirt as well.
I don't know if you make your own compost but here is what I’d do to save some money on filling your box. Fill the box at least half way with grass clippings, leaves, coffee grounds (get those for free from Starbucks) tea bags, egg shells, kitchen scraps, shredded paper (great place to put all the junk mail. I add torn up grocery bags too). You can add any thing but meat and milk products. No dog or cat poop either. Fill the top half with your soil mix. Nine inches is plenty enough for your plants to develop a healthy root system. The worms will come up from the dirt underneath and everything will decompose during the summer. By next year you'll have some awesome soil. You'll need to add more next year as the level will drop quite a bit. My boxes are up off the ground so I put a few worms in them as I found them in other parts of the garden. They seem to be quite happy there.
I’m looking forward to those pictures.
 

lynpenny

Super Moderator
Staff member
#55
Hey Lyn, I palnted some for my daughter. They live her inlaws for now. Husband is in new job. They may be able to move back our way in October. They don't want to move in somewhere and then move again. She is making some planter boxes and wants to grow some things in pots. I started some basil for her. I found some purple basil the other day and started that too! Moms take care of their kids, don't they!!! :)
Oh I haven't seen any purple basil for a while I grew that for several years and really loved it. Maybe I'll look for some seeds when I'm at lowe's next time
 
#56
I just thought I would let all of you know what I found. At the dollar store the other day, I found some large clay pots for $.99. I was so excited. The cheapest that I usually get this size for is $2.50 at WalMart. I was excited! The clay pots seem to work good for my patio.
 

Dor

Active Member
#57
One of the 99 cents stores have large clay pots for $.99 too. The only problem is that I have had to dig through them to find some without a crack. I need some more to grow my herbs in so I will check them out this year.
 

Dor

Active Member
#59
Great. I hope mine has some good ones. I think it had to do with how the employees handled them. They had them outside at the front of the store. I have lots already but need more as I want every plant I see. lol
 


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