Mitch BakerMitch Baker is the Horticultural Specialist at the American Plant Food Co. Garden Center and Nursery, in Bethesda, MD, focusing on natural gardening products and organic gardening. Mitch is a MD Certified Professional Horticulturist, with 31 years of experience in the garden center industry. He has studied at numerous horticultural institutions from New York to Oregon, and also serves on the board of the Rachel Carson Council.
Hi, I am Mitch Baker with American Plant Food. Weve selected our container, we have our soil mix in place, now its the selection of plants. I brought home a collection or a selection of plants and Ive placed them in the big container in their pots, just so I can see what its going to look like. It gives me the option of moving things around, trying different combinations, eliminating some things, using some things. You can see exactly what its going to look like. Again, I have gone for that element of some vertical, some height, some intermediate plants, some plants that would cascade over the edges of the container. I am also concerned about color combinations. So, weve got some really hot colors that tie together with either blossoms or foliage, and the choices are wide open. Dont limit yourself by just annual plants. What I have here is a combination of annual plants, perennial plants and tropical plants. If you wanted to incorporate an evergreen plant in the container with annuals, you could do that as well. The combination is entirely up to you, something thats going to be pleasing to the eye and provide some color throughout the season. So, I have tropical plant like this Croton, we have got an ornamental grass like the Pennisetum Rubrum. There is a perennial back here, the Coral Bells or Heuchera. The Mirabilis with the large colorful hot colored blossoms. The Euphorbia that's going to spill out over the side of the container, staying bloomy the entire warm weather months, that adds a great feature to the container. Petunia in the back here that again will cascade and add those large flowers and some fragrance to the growing season. So, the combination of plants is entirely up to you, but go for that diversity, just like you would in rest of the garden. You want different heights, different textures, and use the different plant groups. Dont limit yourself to just annuals, because youre planting a seasonal container. Use the tropical plants, use the perennial plants, use the evergreen plants, the combination is entirely up to you.