Pots of clever ideas

There’s no excuse for empty containers at this time of year – you can plant them up in autumn for instant colour, for winter interest or spring flowers. There are endless options and potting them up now can ensure a steady stream of colour all the way into spring

To add colour, texture and drama to your doorstep, patio or balcony the first thing you’ll need is frost-proof pots with drainage holes. Drainage is key at this time of year.

Decide on where you want to place your pots before filling them with compost – they’re heavy to move around. Place a layer of broken pots or loose gravel in the bottom of your pot and fill with multi-purpose compost. All that’s left to do is choose your plants.

Chrys ball pots of clever ideas

Instant autumn colour

Add the warm tones of autumn to your pots with swaying ornamental grasses, pansies, asters, chrysanthemums and callicarpa (this has impressive purple berries).

All these plants can cope with semi shade or full sun, giving you plenty of options for placement. 

For guaranteed spring interest, plant tulips, daffodils or crocuses under the plants – this ensures months of colour from one pot.

Special tips for shrubs

If you’re planning to grow shrubs in pots then opt for a tree and shrub compost, and, for acid-loving plants such as camellias, choose an ericaceous compost.

You’ll need to repot them every other year and give them some fresh compost each time.

Cyclamen 4 pack pots of clever ideas

Wonderful winter warmers

Why not welcome Christmas guests with a dashing doorstep display? Skimmia rubella, cyclamen, aucuba, euonymus, hellebores, ornamental cabbages, heathers or ivy are great options – you can mix and match them to create different looks. Ornamental cabbages, cyclamen and heathers are perfect for window boxes, but for larger pots try an evergreen such as box, under-planted with cyclamen.

All these plants can cope with freezing temperatures if they’re in sheltered spots with good drainage.

Spring awakening

The best spring pots need to be planned and planted in autumn.

Wallflowers, muscari, pansies  and spring-flowering shrubs make excellent centrepieces for pots of bulbs. Make sure the pot will look good from all sides so you can turn it round – tulips tend to grow towards the light so turning the pot will encourage even growth.

And finally, for tiny pots grow miniature bulbs such as Narcissus Téte-a-Téte or crocus. If you want to bring on early flowers, keep small pots in a sheltered, sunny spot or in a cool greenhouse.

Top Tip Pots Of Clever Ideas