Tips & Techniques
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Think Outside the Container

Gardening

Container gardening is a growing trend. Whether it’s a DIY herb garden or an efficient small-space display, everyone is talking about the beauty of container gardens. Containers add a pop of personality and make spaces of all sizes feel a little greener. They’re perfect inside and outside, in small homes and spacious gardens, for beginners and pros. No wonder we can’t get enough of them!

Whether you’re dreaming of spring or eager to start growing indoors, think outside the terra cotta and try one of these unique container gardening ideas.

1. Pallet Garden
The pallet garden is a beautiful and practical DIY garden display. Start with a shipping pallet, which can be found at your local garden store. Before you begin, check your pallet for chipped wood, loose nails and other debris and use sandpaper to smooth any rough areas. Then cover the bottom, back and sides of your pallet with landscape fabric. Once you’ve stapled the fabric in place, staple again along the spine of the pallet or anywhere soil might fall out. Pour two bags of potting soil into the pallet through the open front slots and place six plants in each open slot. Gently move your pallet to an upright position and fill in loose soil with leftover potting mix. Water it thoroughly with the gentle soft wash setting of your Front Control Watering Nozzle, taking care not to disturb the soil with a strong spray setting. Continue to water it regularly—daily or every couple days—and revel in a job well done.

2. Shoe Organizer Herb Garden
The shoe organizer herb garden makes gardening for good health easy. All you need is a few basic gardening supplies and a shoe organizer with pouches, which you can find at most department stores. Keep in mind your herbs will need plenty of sunlight, or exposure to a fluorescent light bulb if located inside. Once you’ve found the perfect spot for your hanging herb garden, poke two to three small holes in the bottom of each shoe pouch to allow drainage. Fill each pouch with a well-drained potting mixture, stopping at about one inch from the top. Plant the seeds of your favorite healing herbs in each pocket and mark them with a tag or stick (if desired). Water the potting mixture until it is lightly moist but not dripping with water—overwatering your herbs can cause rot. If you’ve hung your new herb garden inside, place a tray or trough planter below to catch drips.  When it’s time to harvest your homegrown herbs, use a sharp pruner, like the Fiskars PowerGear2 Pruner, to snip them right where the leaf meets the stem. Then enjoy!

3. Bicycle Flower Basket
Do you have an old bicycle lying around? Turn your vintage ride into a timeless garden decoration. The bike’s basket is the perfect place to plant colorful annuals like daisies and marigolds. If your bike doesn’t have a basket, attach a new one for the same effect. Make sure your basket (new or old) allows for drainage and line it with moss and fill with dirt. If your bike is parked in a shady area, try planting impatiens—which thrive even in shade—and let ferns or ivy drape elegantly over the sides. Fill up a watering can using your Flexogen hose or mist with your watering nozzle on a gentle setting. Make a statement in the front yard or add a little charm to the backyard. Either way, the bicycle flower basket will brighten your day.

4. Succulent Terrarium
A terrarium is a miniature indoor garden inside a glass container, and you can save on a pricey store-bought terrarium by making your own. Start by cleaning your glass container with soap and water and then wiping it dry. Add a layer of pebbles to the bottom of your container and then a layer of potting soil. Put your plants in the soil, checking the bottoms to make sure the roots aren’t tangled (release tangled roots by gently teasing them downward). Once you’ve placed your plants, cover the soil with moss. Moss should touch the edges of the glass container. Then gently pour water into the terrarium until it reaches the top of the pebble layer. Check the water level regularly and refill as needed. When your terrarium is established, you can add decorative embellishments. Create a themed terrarium with plastic figurines or trinkets, or decorate seasonally with holiday-related items. Easy to assemble and simple to maintain, a succulent terrarium is the perfect outside-the-container project—no matter your skill level.

5. Porch Planter
A porch planter is an easy but creative way to add a pop of color to your outdoor sitting space—without installing a permanent fixture. You can buy planters that perch on your porch railing at most home and garden stores. If you don’t have a porch railing, a raised planter box will achieve the same effect. Fill your planter with a mix of colorful flowers, some with bright bulbs and some dangling branches. Water your porch planter much like you would any other container—short watering sessions with a gentle spray from your nozzle every day or every few days, depending on your location. Sometimes it’s the smallest garden additions that bring the most joy.

The container gardening possibilities are endless, and with the right tools, you can make your garden ideas garden realities.

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