University of Illinois Extension
Welcome to the World of Container Gardening - University of Illinois Extension

Welcome to the World of Container Gardening

In a world of limited time and space, container gardens seem to make more and more sense. Containers allow you to enjoy growing plants in places that might be thought of as impossible or unthinkable in which to plant. Poor soil or no place to put plants in the ground is no longer an excuse for not being able to enjoy the simple pleasures of gardening.

Container gardening allows you to create special gardens to fit any situation. You may grow special plants that need a bit more attention to soil and water than you are able to provide in a large in-ground garden.

The popularity of container gardening has exploded. Plants in containers are showing up everywhere. From the front porches of bungalows to the rooftops of urban high-rises to the streets of Main Street U.S.A. plants in pots can be found.

Container gardening in European countries is almost an artform where the passion for gardening is not diminished due to lack of space. Gardens show up in window boxes, balconies and decorative pots filled with flowers, vegetables and herbs on the most modest of properties.

With these gardens, individual plants can take on an entirely new look when displayed in containers highlighting the plant's unique color, texture and form.

Combination planters using a variety of plant material achieve the look of a "bouquet with roots" providing color throughout the season. Containers also allow gardeners to provide instant color anywhere and at anytime.

Containers can change the entire look of a landscape. Even when there is ample room to garden in the ground, well-placed containers within the garden can provide easy-to-achieve seasonal changes as well as bold statements.

Successful container gardeners know that a good looking, well-maintained and long-lasting container just doesn't happen. When a few basic principles are applied, even first-time gardeners can create and maintain attention-grabbing containers.

With appropriate containers and proper handling, anything that can be grown in the ground can be grown in a container.

As Hollywood would say, "Pots, Soil, Plants, Action!"