Thursday, July 5, 2012

Containers…


Last summer a good friend was in town for a visit, she relaxed on the patio while Andrew and I brought out dinner. Turns out she hadn’t been relaxing at all; she’d been counting, counting the number of containers on the patio, she stopped at 100 (note I said stopped, not the same thing as finishing). Nothing like being slapped in the face with your addiction!

I have a thing for containers. They are the perfect way to showcase a special plant, give a new plant a home until you find its place in the ground, or most importantly, a way to overwinter non hardy plants. Plus I like the jolt of color they add to the garden…and the “moveable landscape” element they provide. The only problem? I have so many! Above are the ones hanging to the right of the entrance to the back garden.

These are straight ahead as you enter the garden…

Opuntia microdasys

Aloe distans 'Jeweled Aloe', Aloe glauca and Euphorbia leucodendron

This year I had so many small plants I decided to something I’ve never done before; plant multiples in the same container. I’m actually really enjoying them this way.

The circle pot hangs just behind the above group.

And these are across the lawn, at the back of the house.

Or rather they were, when I planted up my Bocconia frutescens I decided it would look better here, the Opuntias and their orange container got the boot to another part of the garden.

Now we’re headed down to the patio, container central. I’ve started moving more containers out into the garden, in an attempt to mix things up and have there not be so many here, but still…

Agave utahensis, I love the long curvy spikes.

To the north of the stair steps down to the patio…

Mystery Aloe (from IKEA a couple of years ago) and Dudleya cymosa.

Agave victoriae-reginae variegata

Agave bracteosa, this one is special in that it came from Lotusland, before I realized I could buy them locally…

A late addition (not in the above photograph)…pups and gifts…

Banksia serrata

Aloe striatula

Aloe capitata var. quartziticola (thank you Denise!...can you believe she shipped this bad boy from California and didn't even break a leaf?)

Another one of those combination plantings. This is so foreign to me, a couple of year ago I never would have done this.

How about those Bromeliads for color eh?

Variegated Gingko, I’m not sure which one since it was a gift…

Looking over at the Shade Pavilion from the patio…

This Dicksonia Antarctica (above) has a double trunk!

You can’t see them but there are 3 containers under all of that foliage…

Here is the set of three hanging containers I bought at Digs last winter.

I’m afraid I haven’t been terribly creative, just tossed a few Tillandsia in there…

A flush of new growth from my IKEA Sago!

Aeonium tabuliforme

Pseudopanax ferox

Every year I’ve got to have a Papyrus…

Manfreda undulata 'Chocolate Chips'

Acacia baileyana 'Purpurea'

Before we leave the patio I wanted to share photos from another angle…

The veggie garden! Otherwise known as the driveway…

There is also Bamboo and Chasmanthium latifolium (Northern Sea Oats) in the drive, I suppose it’s obvious we don’t actually park in our garage?

By the back door, just to create a little spiky fear…


And in the front garden, these really do look better in person than they do here.

Yucca recurvifolia ‘Margarita’

Ensete maurelii

Finally, since this post is all about my containers, I had to share this. I was repotting several plants this spring and using a cardboard nursery flat to catch the soil. I went into the garage to get something and when I turned around this is what I saw.

A plea for attention? Or just a need for a safe place? Cutie pie...

54 comments:

  1. No id could be a Aloe marlothii (first choice) or even Aloe excelsa, or a hybrid of marlothii. Aloe capitata has amazing flowers, and it is a great aloe. LT

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    1. Interesting...I've got a much larger Aloe marlothii and I've never stopped to consider that the IKEA plant could also be one, but now that you mention it (and especially as the IKEA Aloe has gotten bigger) they do have a certain similarity. Thanks!

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  2. Whoa, girlie...crazy cool selections!!!

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    1. Thanks...and I'm gonna try to make it to your open garden on Monday!

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  3. I love your containers Loree..all of it! They are mobile displays which you can easily change depending on your mood or sense of creativity (depending on how heavy they are of course). Most especially I like the way you give an area a shot of colour just by introducing a brightly coloured pot.

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    1. Ya there are a few that I don't lift alone, or even move at all, ever. And to think there was a time that I didn't really like bright colors...

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    1. pot lust / plant lust / pot lust / plant lust...I see how that goes.

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  5. Always blown away when you share pictures of your garden; it's so beautiful and full of swell plants! You have a great talent for pulling together a variety of containers and having the result be smart, crisp, and hip!

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  6. HOLY FLIPPIN GUACAMOLE!!!! epic epic EPIC!!!!!!!!! my containers are all ugly this year. its rather sad. I finally get to see that new dicksonia!!! amazing! but best of all... your circle pot hanging out by that loquat!!!!!

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    1. Ah shucks! Three epics! I'm blushing.

      What don't you like about your containers? The pots themselves or the plants in them?

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    2. I thinks it's a combo of both. Lots are plastic and getting that old dingy look. And I didn't do much container plantings this year so things look overgrown in some cases and sparse in others. I'll have to remedy it

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  7. OMG, I had no idea you had so many! They look so fantastic. Since you have more rain, your plants and containers get washed much more regularly and it shows. Mine are dusty and cobwebby at this time of year.

    Love your Aloe capitata var. quartziticola! Mine is MUCH smaller and doesn't have that otherworldly whitish color. Maybe as it gets older it will.

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    1. More rain indeed...lordy. June was intense! However (on schedule) the switch has been flipped and we've entered our dry season.

      I was kind of worried that my A. capitata var. quartziticola wasn't gonna get enough sun, but it seems to be doing okay. I bet yours will grow fast in your climate...

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  8. That was the post of posts!! Love ALL your containers. How do you keep them so tidy and amazing looking? The hanging ones rock! And you use that gorgeous orange in just the right places and amount. What a delight to see each and every photo!

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    1. Thank you, and my biggest ally in keeping the pots tidy are the long tweezers I bought at the Desert Botanical Garden last fall, LOVE those things!

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  9. Oh...the pic of your pup at the end is the cutest...our cat does the same thing :-) I have to say, I knew you had lots of planters...but I had NO idea you had that many! They really do make the seating areas look even cozier...the shade pavilion looks like somewhere I could spend an afternoon relaxing, for sure :-) BTW...love those wavy concrete planters...too cool!

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    1. I know kind of sick huh? (the qty). And you REALLY do need to come over and relax under the shade pavilion sometime soon...

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  10. So, I'm assuming you wait for rain and don't have to water all of them by hand?? Love all the colors!

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    1. You're right. Although it's been a bit TOO rainy this year! Actually we have 80-90 degree days in the forecast and no rain for a couple of weeks. This is when it's nice that most of my containers are succulents that require little in the way of water.

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  11. What a fabulous collection! love them all.

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    1. Thanks Deanne, and thanks for stopping by!

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  12. Alex, I'll take Pug in the box for $500

    BUZZ

    What is Lila gets no attention..........?

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    1. To her tell it I imagine she would say there are times she wishes she was a plant because then I would pay more attention to her. At least that's the way she looks at me sometimes when I'm "working" in the garden.

      Truth be told that girl is spoiled rotten! (and deserves every bit of it)

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  13. Who needs fireworks when we have all this garden porn?

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    1. And it's so much safer!

      I was very thankful for all of our rain these last few weeks when the sky lit up last night. Good god it was like a war zone out there.

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  14. What a lovely collection of pots and plants you have Loree!

    My youngest, Claudia-Lily (she is 4 and a half) loves your "jaggy" plants. She is worried that some may sting her, but I told her not to worry :)

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    1. What a beautiful name! And I hope you're right, I would hate to have a budding spiky gardener scared away at such a tender age.

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  15. I have this weird aversion to terra cotta, and your containers and garden are absolutely beautiful.

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    1. Hey Mike thanks for stopping buy, nice to find your blog! I had several of the Ecoform pots you mention in your post and thought I would warn you that after a year or two they start to kind of break down. The color fades, and in a couple of occasions I had the roots of an agave break through. Just thought you might want to know.

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  16. Thank you for the head's up! I will have to practice restraint and save up for some more permanent containers.

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  17. I LOVE succulents (and cacti) and, living in a condo with no yard, I can only have container plants out on the patio. Your container plants are SUCH an inspiration. Your plants must be so happy to live in such a wonderful garden, in such pretty containers, and with so many other happy succulent friends to party with. I already had your site bookmarked long ago. But I just bookmarked this particular post so I can go back and look at it over and over again. The photos me so happy I can't even begin to tell you. Thank you for sharing your garden with us, and especially this container-grouping perspective!!! P.S. - At first I was pretty set on not mixing different plants in one container either. But then after making my first succulent medley, I got addicted to making succulent medleys. I LOVE all of your container-plant medleys!!!

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    1. "Succulent Medley" has such a wonderful ring to it! Thank you for the comment, it is wonderful to read that you enjoyed this post so much!

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  18. Oh my gosh - yes, you do have a few containers! Everything looks great!! I love your combos. I enjoy pots as it allows you to have really any variety you want as long as you take it in. Your arrangements are fabulous and the all look great! Very impressive and LOVE the last photo- hahaha too cute. I say a plea for attention. =0)

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    1. Thanks kacky! And if your avatar kitty were to suddenly show up in the garden you'd see an entirely different dog...

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  19. You have so many beautiful pots and plants. I especially like what looks like a varigated agave bracteosa? I don't have that many containers but mine are definetly multiplying! Thanks for some more awesome ideas!

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    1. Yep that's Agave bracteosa 'Monterrey Frost'...quite a stunner huh? It took me awhile to come around to the charms of this plant.

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  20. "I have a thing for containers" has gotta be the understatement of the year. Very hard to choose, but I think that second photo of the hanging salmon-colored round pot with what looks like Agave schidigera is my fave...or maybe the parryi truncatas all in a row, or that aloe right after the acacia photo. Amazing photo of Aeonium tabuliforme.

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    1. Oh but why make yourself choose?!

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  21. I now see what a danger(!) more containers can be, but I'm slowly tumbling down that same slippery slope.

    I confess that right after mentally enthusing over the pots' contents, I found myself thinking of mechanical questions, like, 1) how the heck does Loree get that long planter with all the A. parryi truncatas into the house in winter, and 2) how does she manage to keep some of the bigger plants in surprisingly small containers and still looking so healthy? I'd love to see this something like this be the subject of a future post. Maybe even a picture tutorial on repotting or moving some danger garden residents?

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    1. Ooh, I'd like to see this too. Everything looks amazing.

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    2. Uhm...I think you're both giving me more credit than I deserve! I'll try to think up a post like this...but I'm not sure I have anything to say!?!

      That rectangle planter is very thin and lightweight metal to begin with and then I filled the bottom with nursery pots...planning to only leave the A. parryi truncatas in there for a season and knowing they wouldn't need that much soil. Of course now it's the second season and I haven't repotted them yet. Maybe I still will...(oh and it didn't come into the house, I only had to move it up under the shade pavilion).

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  22. Oh I thought I had it bad, you've been up to some collecting as well. So many incredible specimens, well framed by a nice collection of ceramics. Tis funny how once you have 100 specimen worthy plants the natural urge is to get 100 great planters to feature them in. Beautiful leuchtenbergia!

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    1. It takes a plant freak to appreciate a plant freak! I'd love to have you over Nat, non-plant freaks eyes kind of glaze over at the site of all these...I bet you'd actually enjoy looking at them all!

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  23. Um.....WOWZERS! I mean...I don't even know what to say. Your planters ROCK! COOLEST plant collection in the universe!

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    1. Hahaha, thank you Heather, that's quite the compliment!

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  24. OK, I was going to comment on your breathtaking array of plants and containers, but that last photo put an end to that. SO cute in that box I can barely stand it.

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    1. I agree! Makes my heart just swell up every time I see that picture.

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  25. WOW!!!!!.most love the hanging long plant that was blooming dying to know what the common name is...and the the red pot reminiscent of a pineapple...ADORE

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    1. Hi Sharon...I'm not sure what hanging long plant you're referring to?

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  26. Pony! Always so cute! You DO have a ton of containers, more than anyone I've seen except maybe Tony Avent's garden at Plant Delights. Nothing wrong with that -- I love your look. Absolutely fabulous.

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  27. Dang! I am totally gobsmacked here! I feel like I just had a crazy plant dream where I went to the coolest nursery in the world and saw one incredible plat after another that I wanted to own.

    Do many of these containers come inside for the Winter? And Variegated Gingko?! OMG! So beautiful!

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  28. You really do have the most fabulous pots and plants! Where do you find them all? Next time I venture out pottery shopping, I will consult you first!

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