Evergreen boughs, interesting pods and cones, and colorful stems and berries are just some of the botanical materials you can weave into a tall ceramic pots for plants design. If you are fortunate enough to live in a warm part of the country, living plants are also an option. In regions where freezing temperatures are the norm, gardeners should be aware that the living selections available to them, such as conifers and hardy boxwood, will contribute to big outdoor ceramic planters aesthetics but may not survive winter; extreme temperature changes are often too harsh for their sensitive roots.
If a material looks good and stands up to winter weather, why not reuse it from year to year? The reusable red bamboo poles in this pot offer a strong vertical accent, while living variegated boxwood provides more verticality and a striking backdrop.
Tall, bold gestures such as these are especially important in winter designs. People aren’t as likely to stop and linger when the weather is blustery, so designs need to read well from a distance. For this tall ceramic pots for plants, I wrapped dried magnolia leaves around African knobs (available at dried-flower retailers). Reconstructing natural materials and arranging them in clusters is another great way to make designs pop.
As a rule, more variety equals more impact. When designing tall ceramic pots for plants, use this to your advantage. Although there is a plethora of textures in this combination, similar forms unify them. Moss-covered orbs, poppy pods, and African knobs dot the horizontal plane, while cinnamon sticks, pheasant feathers, and whitewashed cacao stems add height. The simple vintage wooden rice bucket grounds the combo. In cold climates, keep wooden containers out of the elements as wood cracks after repeated freezing and thawing.
Look to the colorful glazes and decorative etchings on tall ceramic pots for plants as a source of inspiration. The detailed carving on this container draws the eye up to the planting, while the mahogany-stained kuwa stems and black-spruce boughs continue the progression up and out. Luckily, creating winter containers doesn’t have to mean gardening in frigid temperatures. For this container, I filled a plastic grower’s pot with potting soil and arranged the planting indoors. Once I finished the design, I brought it outside and slipped it into my decorative container. This durable granite pot won’t crack in winter, but buyers beware: Once you put it in place, you won’t be able to move it until spring thaw.
An often overlooked aspect of plant propagation is the art of record keeping. Whether you are producing a few plants for your home flower and vegetable gardens or working at a larger-scale nursery, developing a propagation journal will prove indispensable. We record when seeds are sown, the germination date and success rate, and when seedlings are ready for transplanting each year. At the end of the year we evaluate the timing of our production schedule, noting what went right and what went wrong. These observations help us make adjustments for next year to ensure that we are growing our plants under optimum conditions. We also keep track of where we purchase seeds, as their quality and reliability may vary by source.
STORE SEED PROPERLY TO MAINTAIN VIABILITY
Seeds are a fragile commodity, and if not treated properly, their viability will sharply decline. While some seeds may survive for thousands of years under the proper conditions, others will lose viability quickly, even when properly stored. To maintain dormancy, keep seeds in a cool, dark location with low humidity, like a refrigerator. I recommend labeling them (seed name, source, year) and storing them in a small reclosable bag or empty film canister that is, in turn, kept in a large outdoor ceramic planters. Once you are ready to sow, you can test the viability of many, but not all, seeds by soaking them in water for a few hours. The seeds that are still living will sink to the bottom, while the dead ones will float on the surface. This test generally works better for larger seeds, but there are no absolutes.
Large outdoor ceramic planters are preferable to clay pots when starting seeds, as they retain moisture more consistently. Wide, shallow containers prevent both overcrowding of seedlings and excessive moisture around fragile, young roots. Plants that resent root disturbance when transplanted are best sown into small, individual containers like cell packs or plug trays. Large outdoor ceramic planters, like empty yogurt or margarine tubs, work well, too, provided you’ve poked holes in the bottom for drainage. No matter what type of container you use, it must be clean and free of pathogens. To sanitize a container, soak it in a 10 percent bleach solution for 15 minutes
TAMP SEEDS DOWN TO MAKE DIRECT CONTACT WITH THE SOIL
Use a kitchen sieve to spread soilless seed-starting mix evenly over the top of the seeds to the depth of two times the seed diameter. Very small seeds and those that require light to germinate should lie directly on the surface. Whether covered with planting medium or not, each seed must be in firm contact with the moist surface to begin germinating. Use a pestle or even the bottom of a glass to gently tamp down the surface.
PREVENT DISEASE BY PROVIDING AIR FLOW AND DRAINAGE
The fungal infection often referred to as damping-off is usually caused by excessive moisture and poor air circulation. However, there are a few cultural techniques that will help to keep fungal agents at bay. After covering the seeds with planting mix and tamping them down, spread a thin layer of 50 percent milled sphagnum and 50 percent starter chicken grit (finely ground stone) over the surface to keep the soil around the emerging shoots dry and provide an inhospitable environment for pathogens. To promote good air circulation, place a small fan near your seedlings. Keep the fan on low and direct it to blow across the large outdoor ceramic planters at the soil level where air may become trapped and stagnant.
COVER TRAYS WITH PLASTIC WRAP TO KEEP THE MOISTURE LEVEL CONSTANT
Seeds are very sensitive to the extremes of overwatering and underwatering. In addition, heavy-handed watering can disturb newly germinated seedlings. Securing plastic wrap over the surface of a freshly sown seed pot can help to keep the moisture level constant. However, the large outdoor ceramic planter must still be checked daily for moisture and germination. If you find that you need to rehydrate your seed container, place the entire pot in a basin with 2 to 3 inches of warm water and allow the planting medium to wick moisture from the bottom. If just the surface has dried, you can lift the plastic covering and spritz the surface with water from a spray bottle. As soon as the seeds germinate, remove the plastic wrap.
KEEP SEEDS WARM TO ENCOURAGE GERMINATION
Most seeds require temperatures of 65° to 75°F to germinate. Placing seed containers near an existing heater or using a space heater with the proper precautions can raise the ambient temperature as needed. In addition, a heating pad designed for plant use placed directly under the seed containers will warm the planting mix and encourage germination. When using any additional heat source, be sure to check for moisture often, since the seed containers may dry out more quickly.
TURN SEEDLINGS DAILY TO KEEP STEMS STRONG
Most seeds will not germinate without sunlight and will perform best with 12 to 16 hours each day. Indoors, place seed containers in a sunny, south-facing window and give the container a quarter turn each day to prevent the seedlings from overreaching toward the light and developing weak, elongated stems. Also, gently brush the palm of your hand against the tops of the seedlings to encourage strong stem growth.
FEED THEM WELL
Proper nutrition at a consistent rate will keep your seedlings growing strong. When the embryo inside a seed is developing, it relies on food stored in the endosperm to fuel its growth. As the shoot emerges from the soil and the true leaves develop, the initial nutrients supplied by the endosperm will be depleted and supplemental fertilization is then required. Most seed-starting mixes contain a small nutrient charge to help make this transition while not burning the developing roots. However, once the true leaves emerge, it is time to begin a half-strength liquid fertilizer regimen on a weekly basis.
One of my favorite garden pastimes is cooking up new ideas for planting containers. I’ve never bothered to count just how many large ceramic outdoor pots I plant each year, but the number easily tops 100.
But no matter how many large ceramic outdoor pots I display, I’ve come to realize there’s no mystery in making a scrumptious container planting as long as I follow a simple three-ingredient recipe. First and foremost is what I call a “thriller,” a centerpiece plant with star quality, something big, bold, and beautiful. Then I add a few spicy “fillers,” foliage or flowering plants that will complement but not overwhelm the main player. Finally, I add a savory splash of mischief, a “spiller” that just tumbles out of the pot. As long as I use each of those kinds of plants—in various proportions—and take care to balance colors and textures, I can create a pot with pizzazz.
Thrillers work best in compositions where they are the tallest plant. For me, they are also the starting point in a container design. I select my thriller, then build around it. At planting time, the thriller goes in the center of a large ceramic outdoor pots that will be viewed from all sides or at the back of a pot that will be displayed in a corner or against a wall.
When planting a large ceramic outdoor pots, I position my fillers around the thriller. I often use a mix of plants for this job: some with foliar interest, others with flowers. For flowery fillers, I avoid perennial varieties in favor of uncommon, striking annuals or tender perennials for their much longer flowering season. Since the goal of container plants is to attract the eye, these plants add an alluring unusual flavor. I like bountiful-looking containers, so I cram in as many fillers as I can.
Spillers should do more than soften a pot and link it to its place. Well-chosen spillers continue the dialogue begun by the thriller and filler. To deepen that conversation, I look for spillers that echo or contrast with the pot’s other plants by virtue of shape, color, or texture.
When I plant containers of bulbs in the fall, I’m thinking of the color and drama they will add to the following spring’s landscape. Not only will these planted pots create focal points throughout the garden, but they will also welcome visitors at entryways and add a touch of bright color to the spring garden.
Any bulb can be planted in a container, but tulips are by far my favorite because of their simple form and the infinite choice of colors. You can combine different types of bulbs in a single tall ceramic pot, but be sure they bloom at the same time or the earlier bulb’s dying foliage will mar the display of the later-flowering bulb. I prefer to plant only one type of bulb per container to get the maximum impact. By choosing bulbs with staggered bloom times we have a succession of flowers from early March through mid-May.
I plant our bulbs in late October in tall ceramic pots with good drainage. In a 24-inch container I plant either 50 tulips, 30 large-flowered daffodils, 50 small-flowered daffodils, or 100 minor bulbs, like Crocus, Muscari, Scilla, or Iris species or cultivars. I fill the pot with a soil mix that drains very well so the bulbs will sit in moist but not soggy soil. I plant the bulbs just as I would in the ground, at a soil depth of twice the diameter of the bulb.
If I am planting more than one type of bulb in the same ceramic pot and they require different planting depths, I layer the bulbs (illustration at right). I fill the glazed ceramic pot to the right level and plant the larger bulbs, then cover them with soil until it’s at the proper depth to plant the smaller bulbs. Finally, I fill the container with soil, being sure to leave at least 1/2 inch of space between the surface of the soil and the top of the container for easy watering.
I water the planted container thoroughly, then water periodically throughout the winter. The bulbs should not sit in soil that is too wet, but you also don’t want them to dry out entirely.
To plant a ceramic pot with different species of bulbs, plant the larger bulbs first, then cover them with soil and plant the smaller bulbs. Fill the container with soil to just below the rim.
Gardening in Seattle makes overwintering bulbs in containers rather easy. I use mostly stoneware pots because they can be left outside through the winter. Our mild winters allow us to group the pots together tightly in our nursery and leave them outside for the season.
If your winter is just too severe to risk leaving the bulbs out or you want to use bulbs in a tall ceramic pot that can’t be stored in the cold, you have another option. Plant your bulbs in small 6-inch or 8-inch ceramic pots and overwinter them under protection outdoors or in a cold garage. In the spring, as they start to bloom, you can then sink the pots into larger display containers. Bring your tall ceramic pots outside in the spring when the danger of hard frost has passed or when the bulbs in the ground are starting to emerge.
After the flowers have faded and the spring gala is over, I plant all the bulbs except for the tulips in the garden. Tulips tend not to do well in subsequent years, so I compost them. Then I start thinking ahead to the varieties I’ll be planting up in the fall for next year’s display.
Hoang Pottery Company is a Vietnam pottery manufacturer & supplier of Home and Garden product such as: ceramic pots, pottery planters, ceramic vases, ceramic animal, ceramic statues, pottery water fountain, pottery Urns, ceramic pottery car , glazed terracotta, red terracotta, black terracotta, zinc, light cement, light terrazzo,…… All is handmade & being fired in the dragon kilns at the height temperature. The material to making the pottery products is local clay.