Container gardening 101

A couple of potted plants makes any space come alive. They do more than just pretty up a place, though. Container gardening is ideal for those with little or no garden space. Gardeners limited to a balcony, small yard, or only a patch of sun on their driveway can produce a wide variety of plants, flowers and vegetable crops in containers.

Once you get the hang of container gardening you might find yourself growing more and more pots each year. Here are some of our best tips for successful container gardening.


It’s also important to decide what plant you want to grow in each container. Several factors help determine how large and deep the container must be. Consider the size and shape of a plant’s root system; whether it is a perennial, annual, or shrub; and how rapidly it grows. Rootbound plants, which have filled up every square inch of the soil available, dry out rapidly and won’t grow well. Choose a large pot or tub for a mixed planting, one that will offer enough root space for all the plants you want to grow.

For a mixture of plants, look for containers at least 30cm wide. Annuals usually need at least 20cm of soil depth, while grasses and shrubs may need two or three times that amount.


Make sure your container has a hole at the bottom to allow excess water to drain out. This will prevent water from stagnating around your plant’s roots and causing them to rot. The drainage hole should be as obstruction-free as possible, to allow excess water to drain out when the pot is overwatered. You can use a handful of pebbles around the drainage hole to make sure soil doesn’t become waterlogged.

If a container has no holes, try drilling some yourself. A container without holes is best used as a cachepot, or cover, to hide a plain pot. Grow your plant in an ordinary nursery pot that fits inside a decorative cachepot so you can move them separately.


There are so many different types of containers for your garden. The traditional terracotta pot is definitely on the top of our list, but there are so many things you can plant flora in. Here are just a few examples: Tubs, baskets, hanging pots, barrels, metal containers, concrete containers, birdbath, wooden box, etc.

A few things to consider when choosing containers:

  • Remember to position heavy containers where you want them before filling and planting.
  • Try to avoid plastic containers as they may become brittle and crack after time in very warm, dry areas.
  • Unglazed clay containers need to be watered more often in dry areas as water evaporates through the porous structure of the pot. So, make sure that the outside of the clay pot is also watered every time the plants are irrigated.

Plantland has a wide range of unique pots available for you to choose from!

Selecting plants for containers

Even though almost any vegetable, flower, herb, shrub, or small tree can grow successfully in a container, some plants are better suited to pots than others. These include:

BeansLettuceSpinachBeetrootOnionsTomatoesCabbagePeppersKale (Asian Mix)

Container gardening is one of the easiest methods for growing plants and adding colour in your garden, and great for gardening in small spaces! To inquire about our huge variety of pots and containers available, visit your nearest Plantland store or contact us.