Advice to fill rooftop planters (for novices!)
- This topic has 0 replies, 1 voice, and was last updated 11 years, 11 months ago by Anonymous.
- May 10, 2008 at 6:30 pm #27804AnonymousInactive
Uh-oh, maybe you went shopping already…and I am too late! I wish I could see the pots because just how big they are (and what they are made of) will determine how happy your plants will be.
Ten inches is smallish (you’ll be watering all the time in the heat); I like pots more approaching half whiskey barrels in size for tough locations. Rooftops tend to be windy, exposed and very hot/drying for plants in summer, more like the desert or at least the prairie than a cozy, protected lakeside or woodland.
When I gardened in an urban setting, I got a lot of mileage out of sedums–both the taller ones like ‘Autumn Joy’ and scrambling ones that spill out of the lips of pots like a succulent carpet. I even grew them in window boxes! Those would be in the perennial department; they seem to live through anything. In the bigger pots you could grow cannas (sold with the bulbs in the garden center; tall, with big, tropical-looking foliage), for instance. You could grow herbs, but look for more compact varieties (like ‘Spicy Globe’ basil would be adorable in pots). Rosemary is shrubby and great in a pot; don’t let it dry out, though. Curly parsley makes a wonderful frilly edge at the "feet" of something taller like that, a ruffled collar of sorts.
Basically you can put anything in a pot–from houseplants to herbs to shrubs and trees and perennials–as long as you are OK that it may not survive the winter. Medium pots like these freeze solid and it’s hard for plants to withstand that. Otherwise I’d suggest some inexpensive young shrubs (evergreen or not) as your first pot plants, because they are so tough and if you pick ones you like the look of for their foliage, they will be good all spring-summer-fall long. I grow Japanese maples, for example in pots; a friend grows unusual Hydrangeas, year after year. He just slips them into his toolshed for the winter (my maples go in my barn). This helps the pots not to crack and the flower and leaf buds not to get hammered int he extreme cold and wind.
So now that I have blabbed…what did you buy after all? By the way, I’m attaching some shots of a drawf small-leaf hjolly I’m going to grow in a pot (it’s evergreen) and some hostas in a pot and so on (those are "perennials").
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