Replant your favorite containers with cool weather annuals that produce vigorous flowers and ornamentals with brilliant colors. The list of possibilities grows longer every season, with familiar pansies and violas growing together with heuchera, ornamental cabbage and peppers, kale and other greens.
Containers planted with one type of flower will look stunning. However, it’s fun to experiment with combinations of color and texture in simple container bouquets.
In warmer climates, depending on availability you might also try planting kalanchoe, impatiens, strawflower, pentas, snapdragon, petunia and dusty miller.
Switch out Containers with Fresh Annuals
- Choosing. Select plants that are showing their first blossoms so you can choose the exact colors you want. Once you bring them home, keep them in a shady place until you’re ready to plant and water them as often as needed to keep the soil lightly moist.
- Refreshing. Refresh containers by pulling out old plants and composting any disease-free plant material. In small containers, replace all soil. In large containers, use a trowel to scoop out the top four inches of soil, which is the easiest way to remove excess accumulated salts. Add fresh potting mix to within one inch of the rim in new or old containers.
- Arranging. Push on the bottoms of seedling containers to free the plants, and arrange them at equal spacing in the containers. As you transplant the seedlings, tease out roots that have grown into a tight spiral. Press plants into place, adding more potting soil to cover any exposed roots.
- Watering. Position planted containers where you want them before giving them a thorough drenching with water. Water as often as needed to keep the soil lightly moist. To support strong blooming, feed your flowers every three weeks with a water-soluble plant food.
Tip: Select one easygoing flower such as blue or yellow pansies and include it in multiple containers to create a harmonious outdoor scene.