If there’s one thing guaranteed to lift the spirits, it’s bright seasonal colour in containers at doors and windows. With a little planning, you can have pretty things in pots and windowboxes all year round, and they’re perfect for places where space is tight.
It’s still a month or so too early for the summer bedding plants that keep containers blazing with colour during the warmer months – many of them are not frost-hardy and need to be kept under cover till at least early or mid-May. But there are lots of lovely things that you can plant up now for an Easter display that will fill the gap until early summer.
Although garden centres have had to temporarily shut their doors to customers, many are still able to do deliveries – so I’d suggest you call your local garden centre and see if they can supply what you need.
Looking good now are potted spring bulbs in different sizes – hyacinths, narcissi and tulips will give you some height in the middle of your display while smaller grape hyacinths and anemone blanda will look well in front and towards the edges. Spring bedding plants, usually available in either pots or trays, include bellis perennis, polyanthus and viola or pansies – tuck these in at the front. For raised displays such as a windowbox, it’s always nice to have one or two trailing plants spilling over the edge – like the trailing ivies and lobelias in the picture. A lovely alternative to trailing ivy is Vinca minor, the lesser periwinkle – this is a small evergreen perennial usually used for ground cover in shady places. Its pretty, purple-violet flowers are looking good right about now – there are white forms as well – and its spreading habit produces trailing stems that make it work well in containers. You can always plant it out in the garden when it’s time to replant the windowbox for summer.
Make sure you use fresh multipurpose compost – last year’s will be completely exhausted of nutrients – and water regularly, daily or twice daily as needed. Now you – and passers-by – can enjoy the sight of your winning windows!
Anne Byrne Garden Design provides easy to follow Garden Plans that you can implement right away or in stages. Anne’s design flair and passion for plants brings a touch of magic to gardens of all sizes.
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