Sunken container gardens are an unusual yet attractive way to display plants in the landscape. They marry form with function by keeping the garden contained and tidy in geometrical patterns. Buried pots keep plants from spreading and use less water and energy to maintain. Add mulch to your sunken garden to keep weeds and pests at bay.
Draw the area you want to landscape. Note where the water source is and the types and locations of plants. Choose plastic or ceramic pots with wide rims and drainage holes. Decide on the color of the pots, from orange to aqua, and pick mulch or stones to color-coordinate. Lay out the pots and determine what plants will go in which container. Note the location of any pipes or wires.
Remove weeds, grass and unwanted plants from the area. Level out the area as much as possible.
Dig holes as wide and almost as deep as the containers. Leave the lip plus 1” of the pot above ground to allow mulch or stones to set below the rim. Place pots into holes and fill the excess space around the pot with dirt.
Lay weed control fabric over the garden. Cut holes for the pots, leaving a 1” border inside the pots. Pull the fabric and tuck under the lips of the pots for a tight fit.
Surround the pots with mulch or stones. Leave enough room for the pots to show their lips above ground. Fill pots about two-thirds full of potting mix and arrange your plants. Backfill with potting mix. Or, pop in a pre-made container. Water regularly.
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