If you’re a beginning gardener, you may think that a 12-inch planter with drainage is too big a deal. After all, this is generally the size of pots that gardeners use for container gardening. You may also have seen other plans that were larger or smaller. The thing is, there are some advantages and disadvantages to container gardening that make the small planter not just a “big planter”.
A big pot gardening project, such as one that includes vegetables, can be overwhelming. There’s so much work involved it can be tempting to just “do it” and get it done. However, if you plan to use soil or compost for your plants, then you need to make sure that your containers have adequate drainage. A pot gardening project with poor drainage can be a real headache. If your pots get waterlogged, the roots will rot, and your flowers won’t grow properly. Container gardening is a great way to garden because it allows you more flexibility and choice, but it can be frustrating if you don’t know what you’re doing.
Another big plus with container planting is that you can place whatever vegetables, herbs, and plants you want where you want them. This makes it very convenient and versatile, allowing you to change your plants often. For instance, I always plant my vegetables in a raised bed with a tumbling tray underneath. This keeps my plants off the ground and from getting damaged by the weight of the soil. With pot gardening, you can get away with using a thin layer of soil in the bottom of the container. However, it’s still best to use a layer of good soil.
But let’s say that you decide to go with a big planter with drainage. How do you prepare your new container for the big rush? Well, the first thing you’ll need to do is make sure that the drainage is working correctly. If your drainage is not working correctly, you plant could topple over. To test it, just wet a handkerchief, put it between the pot and the root system, and then try to find the spot where it dries out.
If there are drainage holes, make sure they are properly sealed. After the first watering, pour some water into the potting mix so that there is at least an inch of water left in it. This will help keep the soil moist. Once you have done this, lay down your plants and wait for them to get established.
The trick to growing plants in containers is to make sure that you have enough room. While it’s true that larger pots with drainage holes will take a lot less time to settle than smaller pots, you still want to space your plants apart a bit. A common mistake that beginners make is to plant their plant next to other plants or even directly on top of them. All of these things could cause your plant to be damaged.
Another thing to do is to check your drainage holes periodically. Most of them will have small stoops or perimeters that drain water off the sides of the potting mix. Over time, these holes can fill up with leaves and debris, making it difficult for your plants to drain. Make sure to clean them out regularly, or your plant will eventually start to get drowned in its own solution.
One final tip is to always prune your planter after it has been set in the ground. You don’t have to do it every time, but it does prevent you from taking the most beautiful planter with drainage holes and tearing it down because you didn’t remove all of the grass around the edges. When planning your garden, think about the best places for each of your planters. Make sure they are in areas where they will receive plenty of sunlight, water, and air. After you have finished building your planters, consider what they will look like when you are done. Many people find that once they have enjoyed their garden for a few years that they move their pots from one spot to another, finally enjoying a fully drained and beautiful planter with drainage holes.