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25 Tips & Tricks for Growing Container Gardens

Container gardens are great to have for many reasons – they are easy to move around, don’t require a ton of sun, and can be just the right size for a small space. You can grow plump tomatoes on your balcony and colorful flowers on your porch. Learn about which plants grow best in a container, what soil and fertilizer to use, and tips and tricks for Container Gardening 101…

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  • 25 Tips & Tricks for Growing Container Gardens 1 of 26
    25 Tips & Tricks for Growing Container Gardens
    Click through to see them all!
  • Use Soilless Mix 2 of 26
    Use Soilless Mix
    This is lightweight and easier for veggies to grow in.
    Find out more at Martha Stewart.
  • Recycle Containers 3 of 26
    Recycle Containers
    Use a wooden wine crate to grow plants, because it drains very easily.
    Find out more at Martha Stewart.
  • Shelter from the Wind 4 of 26
    Shelter from the Wind
    Since they are not the strongest of plants, it's good to keep them as sheltered from the wind as possible.
    Find out more at Desperate Gardener.
  • No Sitting in Puddles 5 of 26
    No Sitting in Puddles
    Make sure you either get a water tray or have holes at the bottom of the pot so your plants do not sit in water.
    Find out more at Desperate Gardener.
  • Combine Herbs and Veggies 6 of 26
    Combine Herbs and Veggies
    See the list of herbs that your an combine with veggies to help keep bugs away.
    Find out more at Desperate Gardener.
  • Beautifying Your Containers 7 of 26
    Beautifying Your Containers
    Of course the plants growing from the containers are beautiful, but it helps to add bursts of color by painting your containers.
    Find out more at Fiskars.
  • Line Baskets 8 of 26
    Line Baskets
    To keep the soil from leaking out, line the box with sheet moss.
    Find out more at Fiskars.
  • Working with Color 9 of 26
    Working with Color
    Get containers that will complement the plants, like these sleek black containers for bold red flowers.
    Find out more at Better Homes and Gardens.
  • Level Up 10 of 26
    Level Up
    Make the container garden more eye-catching by using a ladder to set the plants at different heights.
    Find out more at HGTV.
  • Get Creative with Containers 11 of 26
    Get Creative with Containers
    Don't run out to buy a whole bunch of containers just yet, look around the home and see what you have on hand.
    Find out more at HGTV.
  • Tomatoes are Your Best Friend 12 of 26
    Tomatoes are Your Best Friend
    You can enjoy them all summer long, and sometimes even into fall, just make sure to water very regularly.
    Find out more at Midwest Living.
  • What Veggies to Grow? 13 of 26
    What Veggies to Grow?
    You'll be happy to know that all veggies that grow in the ground can be grown in a container. You'll probably want to steer clear of vegetables that take a long time to grow like corn.
    Find out more at Sunset.
  • Line with Pebbles 14 of 26
    Line with Pebbles
    Keep the drainage holes from getting clogged up by lining the bottom of your container (or boot) with pebbles.
    Find out more at Red Ted Art.
  • Knowing What’s What 15 of 26
    Knowing What's What
    If you have a bunch of containers that look the same, make markers to know which plant is in which container. This is great for knowing which need to be watered more, or need more sunlight.
    Find out more at Stitch a Wish Design.
  • Use Vertical Space 16 of 26
    Use Vertical Space
    When you run out of room, make a hanging container garden out of rain gutters.
    Check out the tutorial at Nest in Style.
  • Planting in Succession 17 of 26
    Planting in Succession
    Make a plan of what plants you will grow in what order. In this case, you could do a lettuce that still grows when it's cool out and then go onto veggies.
    Find out more at The Mindful Word.
  • Compact for Higher Up 18 of 26
    Compact for Higher Up
    Remember that more compact plants are better for hanging up in baskets.
    Find out more at Parkseed.
  • Fix It and Forget It 19 of 26
    Fix It and Forget It
    Succulents require very minimal work, they're great for those that don't have a green thumb.
    Find out more at Sand & Sisal.
  • Fertilize Regularly 20 of 26
    Fertilize Regularly
    Since container plants don't have access to all the nutrients they need, it's important you keep them nice and fertilized.
    Photo via Colonial Nursery.
  • Go Big 21 of 26
    Go Big
    Garden in a pot that is bigger than the plant will actually need, this is so it will have plenty of space to grow.
    Find out more at Food 52.
  • Stake it in the Beginning 22 of 26
    Stake it in the Beginning
    Make sure to place the stake in before you've put in the soil and the plant.
    Photo via Midwest Living.
  • Best Veggies to Grow 23 of 26
    Best Veggies to Grow
    Although you can grow them all, tomatoes, squash, cucumber, and peppers are a great way to go.
    Find out more at Chatelaine.
  • Don’t Fill to the Brim 24 of 26
    Don't Fill to the Brim
    When planting your seeds, don't fill soil up to the very tip top. This will ensure that you will get plenty of water absorbed without overflowing
    Photo via Better Homes and Gardens.
  • Hot Summer Days and Watering 25 of 26
    Hot Summer Days and Watering
    Normally you can water your plants once a day, but when it gets to high temperatures you should up it to twice a day.
    Get the tutorial Craft Berry Bush.
  • Pick Off Dead Leaves 26 of 26
    Pick Off Dead Leaves
    This is especially good to keep flowers looking sharp and to help keep bugs away.
    Photo via My Home Ideas.

Jaime Morrison Curtis is author of the bestselling book Prudent Advice: Lessons for My Baby Daughter (A Life List for Every Woman), follow up fill-in journal My Prudent Advice, and founding co-editor at Prudent Baby, the premier design and lifestyle blog providing inspiration and instruction to help anyone create beautiful things, food, and experiences for their friends and family.

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