Planters & Gardening
How to Use Outdoor Planters
The simplest, easiest and most enjoyable way to ready your patio for summer lounging and entertaining is to decorate with plants. Fresh green ferns, vibrant flowers and textured hedges spruce up any space. Find outdoor planters and pots in the shapes, sizes and styles you need to create the perfect escape in your own backyard.
Seeding Your Pots
If you know you want to decorate with outdoor plants before the growing season begins, start your seeds indoors. Easy-growing kitchen herbs such as basil, rosemary, thyme and chives can grow indoors all year round. Because herbs are small plants, they can easily be moved outside in their original pots or transplanted to bigger or more durable outdoor planters. Whatever type of seeds you choose to start indoors, you should water the pots at least once a day until they have sprouted, as the bed needs to be moist to promote growth. If you choose to start other plants or flowers from seedlings, consider both how big they will grow and how big of planters they will require, as well as the kind of sunlight, water, space and care they will need after they sprouts or blooms. Once it's warm enough to continue growing outside, you'll need a work station either on your patio or in the garden to plant new seedlings, pot botanicals and transplant your indoor herbs and sprouts. Work stations are also a great place to gather all of your garden tools, soil bags and extra seeds. You don't need much to cultivate a green thumb, but must-haves include a small hand trowel for potting and at least one watering can to help you keep your greens hydrated all season long.
Decorating with Outdoor Planters
Abundant, flourishing greenery literally breathes life into your space and can help fill out the nooks and crannies, making it feel full, lush and calm. Diversifying your botanicals by type, color, size and appearance will not only give your patio a unique look, but they will also give you more variety to work with when arranging your planters. While small flowers and buds can easily be placed on side tables or along a deck railing, they are also perfect for window boxes. Try potting small perennials there—petunias and pansies are classic choices, and both add rich, natural color to your space. Window boxes and rail planters are also ideal for fresh herbs. If your barbecue grill is on the edge of your patio, consider a rail planter instead of a window box for herbs. Using a hook system just like a window box, this keeps all that fresh, fragrant goodness right within reach of the grillmaster to pick or trim, and to garnish dishes. As for the planters themselves, their shapes and colors will set the tone for your deck. White planters with clean, modern lines make any backyard feel contemporary, minimalistic and collected. Pots and vases in black or other dark shades lend a subdued, upscale look to the area. If you know you'll be rearranging your patio furniture and decor throughout the season, consider plastic outdoor planters. With designs resembling wood and stone, the convenience of the lightweight construction won't take away from the overall aesthetic of your patio.