5 Fabulous Plants for Spring Container Gardens

Plants for Spring Container

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5 Plants for Spring Container Gardens

Container gardening is a perfect way to say goodbye to winter and welcome spring. At a time when the soil is still too cold to grow anything, above-ground potting soil can absorb a lot of sunlight for plant growth. And there are a number of plants that thrive in the low temperatures of early spring. Many even tolerate light frosts or light snow. And with potted plants, it's very easy to cover them with a protective cover on nights when there may be heavier frosts.

These plants can also make great fall container specimens to use after the summer heat has subsided. They will thrive until the first snowfalls in late fall and early winter.

Many spring gardens use chives, which are incredibly fun to grow. However, our picks focus on five less common plants to plant on doorsteps, patios, and decks in the spring.

Pansies and violets (Viola Γ— wittrockiana, Viola spp.)

Plants for Spring Container
The different types of annual viola are ideal potting options in early spring and fall when temperatures are likely to be cool or slightly cool. These plants like low temperatures, so they should be replaced with warm-season plants as soon as cool spring weather gives way to early summer. As these are low-growing plants, they look best when planted in a large, low container or used as "fill/dump" plants in mixed containers of larger samples.

Pansies and their younger cousin Violets are cold-weather lovers and wither and turn to long legs when it's too hot. Fertilize lightly during the growing season - too much fertilizer will turn them into leggings, but if you don't eat a little they won't bloom.

You can plant pansies and violets together or with other spring annuals. You can also combine them with perennials, such as coral bells (Heuchera) and the spooky jenny. In a mixed container, you can easily replace them with other plants in late summer, when they wilt.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 6 to 10; normally planted as annuals
  • Color Varieties: Blue, purple, red, rose, yellow, apricot, maroon, white and bicolors
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun to part shade
  • Soil Needs: Moist, general-purpose potting mix

Cineraria (Pericallis Γ— Hybrida)

Plants for Spring Container
As a member of the sunflower family, Cineraria (also called Florist's Cineraria) is a perennial herb grown annually in many climates. This medium-sized plant with a temperate climate is available in various colors and is perfect for spring pots. It can flower for up to 5 months if conditions are cool enough. Cineraria requires good drainage; prefers full sun (if it's cold enough), but also looks good in partial shade.

Keep the Cineraria moist, not wet, and never allow the plant to dry out completely. Large pots with lots of moisture-holding potting soil increase your chances of success. Like most tall flowering plants, cineraria should be fertilized regularly.

This choline plant blends well with others or looks great on its own.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 9 to 11; normally grown as annuals
  • Color Varieties: Many colors, including bicolors
  • Sun Exposure: Part shade
  • Soil Needs: Moist, general-purpose potting mix

Spiral sorrel (Oxalis spiralis subsp. Vulcaicola)

Plants for Spring Container
The genus Oxalis comprises a variety of plants collectively known as sorrel. Oxalis spiralis subsp is a favorite species for short enclosures. vulcnaicola, also known as spiral sorrel or volcanic sorrel, is a perennial in warmer regions but is grown as an annual in other climates. This native subspecies is a widespread plant that grows to about 20 centimeters tall with a spread of 2 meters or more. The cultivated and named varieties are mountainous plants that are ideal "filler plants" in containers. The flowers are usually yellow, but the mentioned varieties can have light green to deep purple foliage.

To keep Oxalis happy, fertilize them regularly and keep them moist, not wet. When your plant begins to gain legs, cut it down completely to rejuvenate it. You don't need a dead end.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 9 to 11; grown as annuals elsewhere
  • Color Varieties: Yellow
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun to part shade
  • Soil Needs: Medium moisture, general-purpose potting mix

Coral bells (Heuchera spp., X Heucherella)

Plants for Spring Container
Both species produce coral bells and a hybrid cross (known as x Heucherella, a cross between Heuchera and Tiarello) are perennials that grow well in the shade throughout the year. However, they are so cold tolerant and unpretentious that they are particularly good at handling spring temperature fluctuations. Both come in a variety of leaf colors and shapes, with more available each season. Spring is a particularly beautiful time for Heucheras. Although best known for their foliage, spring flowers can be quite dramatic and last a long time.

These plants react badly to "wet feet". Use slightly dry, well-drained soil. Mixing a slow-release fertilizer improves leaf color and bloom. They can be planted alone as specimens in large containers or with other annuals as "spills" on the rim of a pot.

If these perennials are grown in pots, they can be moved to a dry, sheltered area for the winter in late fall and then replaced the following spring.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 4 to 8
  • Color Varieties: Red, white, coral, pink
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun to part shade (depends on variety)
  • Soil Needs: Dry to medium-moisture potting soil

Cool-Season Herbs and Vegetables

Plants for Spring Container
Fresh herbs and leafy greens are perfect for spring containers. Kale and parsley, for example, do not ignore the cold and are especially beautiful in the pot thanks to the leaves with complex textures. Kale and parsley pair well with each other and can be a surprising addition to mixed containers.

Oregano, thyme, sage, mint, lemon balm, and chives are also good herbs to include in your mixed containers. Besides kale, think about other spring greens, like spinach and chard.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 2 to 11; normally grown as annuals
  • Color Varieties: Not grown for flowers
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun to part shade
  • Soil Needs: Medium moisture, general-purpose potting mix

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Plants for Spring Container

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