Outdoor planter ideas and inspiration to get your front porch ready for summer
I am so happy it is finally getting warm out and I can get my front porch ready for summer. Every winter feels like the longest one and this year I thought the same again.
I am tempting something I have never tempted before with my planters on my front porch. I am planting real plants and I am going to try to keep them alive!
I always said that if I tried hard enough I could kill a fake plant. I really do think I have that super power. My thumb has been a very dark shade of black. I have been working on it lately. I think my black thumb is actually now a light shade of gray. Not quite green yet, but one day maybe
Last year when I gave our front porch a little refresh, I planted an unkown plant in my large white planters I found at Walmart. I forget what I planted and I know I just grabbed the first thing I saw at the nursery. The plant was fried by mid July. It didn’t help that I might have forgotten to water it.
So this year, I did my research (and called a cousin who knows what’s she doing-thanks Vi if you are reading this).
My planters get full sun most of the day so I needed some plants that can handle it and fingers crossed they do. Here’s my line up
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Sweet Potato Vine
I like the light green color of the sweet potato vine and these bad boys will get nice and full and cascade down your planter
I choose the “wave” petunias. Rumor has it these seem to grow a little fuller (I can totally be making this up though. I am sure any kind of petunia would look great)
I wanted something that had some height to it. These are also deer resistant so they’ll likely be the only thing still standing by the end of the summer. Bambi lives near by
This was a last minute pick. You can never have too many plants hanging over your planters. I also like to have a variety of shades of green to add some more interest to my planter
Other container plants that can work with FULL sun
Container plants that can work in part sun
Container plants that can work in shade to part sun
How to plant flowers in a pot
Since I was using an assortment of plants in my white planters this year, I wanted them to be planted purposefully so each plant can be seen. We’ll talk in a little bit about if you have a large planter but for now here are you supplies:
~Planters: I’ll link to some below. I purchased mine at Walmart last year and so far they don’t seem to be back in stock. At least, I have not seen them in any of the stores near me.
~Potting Soil: I just picked up a bag at Walmart. I usually opt for Miracle Gro but for some reason I grabbed a different brand
~Gloves and a small shovel: Totally optional but thought I should mention it. I usually end up using my daughtert’s plastic beach shovel because I can never find our real shovel.
~Fertilizer: I have been hearing good things about this fertilizer so I just purchased it. It has great reviews and I am hoping that if I actually fertilize my plants, my thumb might get closer to a shade of green. I don’t think I have ever fertilized anything ever in my life. (here’s a first for everything)
I started by filling my planter with soil and then placing each plant in the planter where I thought I wanted them to be.
I knew I wanted the spikey plant to be in the middle so I planted that guy first and then started adding in each plant one at a time around him.
Give your plants a good water and some fertilizer once you are finished. I really hope I can keep these plants alive just so I can see how this will turn out. Obviously, it’s looking a little pathetic right now but fingers crossed in a few weeks I’ll start to see some growth.
(You can see more about my summer front porch here)
What to put in bottom of large planter
If you have a large planter (like I do) you can try to fill in the bottom of your planter with some light weight (and bulky) fillers. You want to go light since dirt can get heavy quickly. Even the lightest of pots can get heavy real quick with all of that dirt. This will also save you some money on buying more potting soil
I usually use a large nursery pot if I have one lying around and flip it upside down to fill the bottom of my planter and then pour the potting soil over that. You can also use and old bucket. Plastic milk jugs work to take up space as well.
Get creative. And since I (unfortunately) learned this the hard way, don’t use rocks or bricks. You will have the best time ever trying to move that planter that now weighs 562 pounds. If you have fallen into this trap, grab one of these to help you.
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Other Plant Combination Idea For Planter Garden
For my planters I used a simple formula. I wanted height, volume and drama. Minus the height part, I just described myself-ha!
The draceaena spike is my height plant, the wave petunias are my volume plants and both sets of vines are my drama plants.
Anything is fair game when it comes to planters though and here are some other ideas…
Group plants and flowers together in similar pots
Another idea for your planters is to grab a few hanging planters from your local nursery, remove the hanger and place them directly in your planters. You can’t get any easier than that. Group similar planters together for more of a statement.
Use flowers/plants from the grocery store
My husband brought me home a hydrangea plant for Mother’s Day and I put it in a planter on our front porch. A nice little change from using annuals in your planters.
Side note: Did you know that these foil wrapped hydrangea plants you can gift aren’t really meant to be planted outdoors? I was doing some research on them and came across that fun (possibly false) fact. And yes, I will still attempt to plant this plant in my yard in the fall regardless. I’ll let you know how it turns out.
If you want to really add a statement with your planters you can do something like this…wowza
I mean, I kind of want to copy this for my steps…not today though.
Use faux plants
I cheated with the planters by my front door and just put some faux lemon trees in them. This is another easy way to make a statement. And since these plants are fake there is no need to worry about killing them, unless you are like me and can kill fake plants.
Last year I used fake flowers to put in my planters for my fall front porch
Use indoor plants
There is no rule saying indoor plants need to stay indoors in the summer months. If your outdoor conditions are right for that indoor plant, put them outside. I have a few ZZ plants in my house and they are practically indestructible so I decided to bring one outside and plopped him right down in a planter.
Use succulents in small pots or hanging baskets
Succulents are also great plants to use outdoors since they are pretty black thumb tolerant. And I love how Brooke used succulents in her hanging basket on her door.
Tips to keep plants healthy
A few tips to keep your plants healthy over the summer. These are tips that I need to follow as well.
~Make sure your planter has a drainage hole. You don’t want your plants to be sitting in water. The roots can rot and your plant will not do too well. If your planter does not have a drainage hole, you can drill one.Place a saucer under your pot to protect your porch. If that isn’t your cup of tea, add a handful of small stones to the bottom of your planter. I know I told you earlier to not do that but if it means keeping your plant alive then just do it. Just layer the bottom of your planter with stones and them fill the rest with soil. The stones will help absorb the water so your plant isn’t sitting in water.
~Fertilize regularly~ I plant to fertilize my plants once every 4 weeks (ish). Again, using this fertilizer
~Choose potting soil that is meant for outdoor planters. Regular dirt will not help your plants. I think I know this from personal experience
~Water frequently~I am sure this is a no brainer but if you have a black thumb like me, I tend to forget about my plants and hence forget to water them. I have every intention of sticking a post it note to my front door to remind me to water my plants. If the soil feels dry, water your plants. If you are forgetful like me this kit might be your best friend.
Pots and Planters
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Front porch planter ideas and inspiration to get your front porch ready for summer
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