Tonawanda News — If you are planting in a large container or urn that would be too heavy to move when full, note that the entire container does not need to be filled with potting mix, only the top 6-8 inches, depending on plant size. To take up some of the extra space, place empty plastic soft drink bottles in the bottom before adding the potting mix. Make sure these do not plug the drain hole, to allow for proper drainage.
Now that you’ve prepared your container, it’s time to add the potting mix. Never use regular garden soil as it’s too heavy and doesn’t provide the drainage needed. You can purchase potting mix with a slow release plant food, or mix in your own, to provide nutrients throughout the season. Make a flat base of potting mix in the container to set the plants on so that the final soil level will be about an inch below the rim of the container. It’s a good idea to experiment with the final placement of your plants before you remove them from their pots. This way you can rearrange without disrupting the roots.
When you’re satisfied with the arrangement, remove each of your plants from its pot, loosen the roots gently if they seem compacted, and place them in the container. Finally, fill in around the plants with the potting mix, firming with your hand. Water thoroughly, and get ready to enjoy your handiwork!
Soon your containers will grow and flourish and you can display them with pride. The Lewiston Garden Club hopes you will want to share what you’ve created by entering the container contest at the Lewiston GardenFest on June 22 and 23. Additional details and an entry form can be found at www.lewistongardenfest.com.
Barbara Stafford is the third vice president of the Lewiston Garden Club. For more information on the club’s Lewiston GardenFest, visit www.lewistongardenfest.com.