Container Gardening for Fall and Winter

The temperatures are dropping, but that doesn’t mean your beautiful blooms have to end! Why not consider container gardening throughout the Fall and Winter season? Creating container gardens is a fun, simple way to bring your plants’ beauty indoors and protect them from the elements.
If you already have several container arrangements started, consider combining them into one, three or five pots (depending on how many you have to start with). You might also like to add some new plants such as pansies, fall kale or even small evergreens. The tired plants can be removed, and containers you don’t use can be put away for the winter. Place your “new” containers in strategic locations where you can best enjoy them, like by your patio door, outside a kitchen window or grouped by your outside seating area.

There are many summer and early fall annuals that can handle the cool temperatures, including verbena, nemesia, bidens, million bells (Calibrachoa), lantana, zonal geraniums (Pelargonium x hortum), red grass (Pennisetum rubrum), diascia and gerbera daisies. Even if you haven’t planted any of these particular plants this year, you may want to consider including them in your containers next spring. Like your perennial borders, where you plan to have something(s) blooming throughout the summer and fall, the same idea can be used with your containers by including annuals you know will look great throughout fall.

You can also bring favorite annuals inside for the winter. To care for the annuals, put them in the brightest light possible (a south-facing window is best), pinch the plants often to keep bushy, water the plants regularly and do not fertilize until the days become longer in late February. You may also want to spray the plants with insecticidal soap before bringing them indoors to make sure you are not bringing in any pests.

Unfortunately, not all annuals will do well inside, but the following plants can be adapted to indoor conditions and bring you some

Houseplants as an Indoor Nature Connection

The mere presence of a lone Peace Lily tucked in the corner of the living room is nice. But, with a bit more thought and effort regarding placement, arrangement and interaction with houseplants, benefits similar to those received from being outdoors in nature can be achieved. Of course, this is all based on having more plants than one….lone…Peace Lily.  If a home is to truly be a plant boosted sanctuary, plants should be placed throughout the home. No worries – there are houseplants suited or adaptable to every level of light and a bit of research or experimentation will likely show there is really no need to be limited to one sunny windowsill. Continue reading “Houseplants as an Indoor Nature Connection”

Tips for Annual Selection & Care

Choose Well

To ensure attractive healthy annuals all season, choose full, well branched plants with good foliage color and – on flowering annuals – an abundance of buds. Don’t go for the biggest plants or most open blooms, these are more likely to be leggy and burned out too soon. If the latter is all you find, you can improve their appearance and longevity by pruning them back by about one third to encourage branching and fresh growth. Continue reading “Tips for Annual Selection & Care”