Color Me Weird

By Bonnie Grant | April 24, 2021
by Bonnie Grant
April 24, 2021

I love plants indoors and out. Of course, my home is filled with container houseplants. They live in a variety of containers, some even from my grandmother. But it’s outside where my container personality really comes out. My favorite pots are big, brightly colored and filled with mixed plantings. Many of the plants stay in the containers for just a few years and are then put in-ground when they get too big. The outdoor containers are then ready for some new plants. 

Outside my home are a variety of plants in a variety of outdoor containers. I like to get funky with things, so outside of my bold pots you will find some funny planting situations. Repurposed planting containers allow me to exercise my imagination while reusing odd items. My container plants may be found in all sorts of weird vessels, each of which is a shriek of joy and un-conventionalism. 

A Wide Variety of Growing Vessels

Container plants feature prominently in my garden beds. There is a volunteer walnut in a giant, aqua blue glazed pot, an outdoor cactus in unglazed terra cotta, a yucca in a large Mexican container. My little smoke tree is on the patio in another big glazed container and is currently sporting some pansies as companions around its edges. Purchased pots make up only a percentage of my outdoor containers. There are some even quirkier planting situations. 

My neighbor had an old standing, metal, double sink sitting outside which he gave to us. It is out front of the home with spring bulbs as a colorful foil to its rusty, metal exterior. These will be replaced by summer annuals when they die back. Swinging around back, a very distressed, old tool box with holes drilled in the bottom houses hens and chicks year around. Scan to the left and we have a feed trough filled to the brim with cool season greens. Under these are onion, shallot, and garlic starts just beginning to peek up. 

Hanging Containers

There are also odd hanging containers. You know those over-the-door shoe organizers? Yep, they are on the wall outside in spring and summer, bearing annual herbs like cilantro and basil.  Children’s rain boots from the thrift store have little spring annuals peeking out of the tops.  They are nailed to the fence and provide cheery interest. The previously mentioned neighbor has a tire collection. There were some bike tires that I spray painted that hang from an old chain. The inner tube has enough space for soil and some cute succulents. 

Repurposed planting containers are where the imagination can really run wild. If it has space for dirt, you can use it. I love the eclecticism of a variety of planting vessels and the challenge of creating interesting spaces for the plants I adore. 

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