Shade Container by Gardens OyVey Photo by Deborah Fagan Carpenter
Shade Container by Gardens OyVey Photo by Deborah Fagan Carpenter

Container gardens add interest and beauty to patios or gardens, and intrigue and curb appeal to entryways. Combining various heights, colors and textures, like this one created by Liam Boyd of Gardens OyVey near Arlington, TN is an inviting way to welcome visitors to one’s home. (Check out our 2013 article, Oy Vey! Paradise in a Gulley! to read more about the innovative plant nursery— www.gardensoyvey.com)

Spring, Summer, Fall or Winter—containers can provide beauty throughout the year!

Containers can be seasonal, or can be planted with a mixture of compatible greenery that can withstand cold temperatures.

Another planting by Gardens OyVey features hardy ferns alongside colorful and sturdy Heuchera and trailing vine, which flows over the edges. The planting here was assembled in December of 2013 on the day before an unseasonal ice storm, and survived not only that cold event, but a January and February filled with 9 degree days and nights.

Arrangement by Liam Boyd of Gardens OyVey Photo by Deborah Fagan Carpenter
Arrangement by Liam Boyd of Gardens OyVey Photo by Deborah Fagan Carpenter

Don’t have a yard in which to garden–contain it!

Container gardening is ideal for renters who might want to take their garden along to their next residence, and it is the obvious solution for gardening in small areas or apartments with limited gardening opportunities, such as balconies. For those who love to cook with fresh herbs, but have nowhere to grow them, a planter filled with basil, thyme, oregano, chives, and tarragon is not only practical, but is pretty and fragrant. A strawberry jar is an ideal container for such a planting, and can fit on a small porch.

Indecisive or confused about how to plant a container?

Millstone Market Nursery Birdcage Garden Photo by Deborah Fagan Carpenter
Millstone Market Nursery Birdcage Garden Photo by Deborah Fagan Carpenter

A veritable “mother lode” of beautiful and inventive container gardens which are already assembled can be found at Millstone Market & Nursery in Germantown, TN. www.millstonenursery.com Owner Tricia Hunt had so many calls for their wonderful creations that she now employs three full time people to do nothing but create unusual container gardens and arrangements. Using mosses and ferns, a small birdcage planter was assembled to be a charming addition to any garden table.

Drainage is no problem in a container like this one, but special care should always be taken to provide a large hole for excess water to escape, or to insure that it is allowed to flow through something natural such as pine bark mulch or broken clay pot shards. Placing moss on top of plantings is a beautiful way to seal moisture in, and adds additional interest to the collection.

Millstone Market Nursery Creation Photo by Deborah Fagan Carpenter
Millstone Market Nursery Creation Photo by Deborah Fagan Carpenter

Survive the long hot summer surrounded by lush greenery!

Gorgeous summer arrangements are available at Millstone Market & Nursery, and this one features summer’s star, Caladiums. The variegated beauties are joined in a rustic wooden basket by another summer favorite, Impatiens, with Wood Ferns providing height and Ivy trailing out of the base.

Dig in!

The possibilities for what to plant and what container to use are endless, and provide numerous opportunities for personal expression. Add beauty and interest to your garden or front entrance, or just plant it on your bicycle and drive it around the neighborhood!

Millstone Market Nursery Bicycle Planter Photo by Deborah Fagan Carpenter
Millstone Market Nursery Bicycle Planter Photo by Deborah Fagan Carpenter

4 thoughts on “Contain it, and Let it Flow! by Deborah Fagan Carpenter

  1. love container gardening and have spent years in trial and error, thanks for the info on Trish Hunt.
    One of the most peaceful patio gardens I know of is the one at Deborah’s gallery/home!

    1. Oh Lisa, thanks for that and thanks for taking the time to read the article!

  2. Lisa W Davis

    Beautiful photography and wonderful article, Deborah!

  3. Mona Sides-Smith

    Good ideas! Great pictures!

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