Lg. pots to put in your garden

Clermont, FL(Zone 9b)

How full do you fill the pot-------Do you put gravel in frist and then sand, top it off with soil? ---should the plants be allthe same as for watering etc. --please let me know----I am very new to all of this

thank you chialea

Fritch, TX(Zone 6b)

i don't know, but a good place to get an answer would be the container gardening forum.
click Garden Talk above to find it...

happy gardening!

Denver, CO

Don't put gravel in the bottom; believe it or not, it actaully reduces drainage with a lower capillary attraction.
Happy Gardening!
K. James

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)


Gravel, sand and stone weigh a ton!!!!!!

Here's some things to consider:

1. Will you be moving these pots from one place to another--ever?
2. Will you be repotting/digging up things in them every year?
3. How BIG a pot is BIG in your mind? 14"? 20"? 24"? More?
4. Will they be where winds are hard and may blow them over?

It would also depend on what you plant in them. Some plants catch the wind like parachutes. Some do not. Like--if you have a Brugmansia in a pot above ground, I can tell you that it won't take a lot to blow it over. Huge leaves and a bushy height are big wind-catchers. I had 4 cinder blocks around mine, and they still blew over!
Of course--I had those big, foam pots that look like clay, and even thought hey were filled with soil all the way down, they still would blow over! The weight of the pot itself is, obviously, a big factor. If you use really HUGE clay or ceramic pots, they will stay put............hopefully...........

If you plant shrubs or small trees in them, remember--you may want to rotate them so they grow evenly all around. Keeping them on some kind of a wheeled dolly may help in this case.

IF you are not going to have to lift them and move them, then you can fill them up with soil, with a layer of something more pourous in the bottom for drainage.
If not, then several things can help to "lighten the load". People use packing peanuts (NOT the rice ones! They dissolve!), Easter eggs, Small pieces of styrofoam, chunks of bark and such --to about 1/3 up from the the bottom of the pot. Keep drainage in mind. You do not want to put anything in the bottom that will compact.
To keep the soil from just filtering through whatever materials you use to put in the bottom, use a layer of coffee filters on top of it--or screening mesh, or anything else that will hold the soil separate, but still allow free drainage. Depending on how much rain your area gets, I do not like to use a saucer under pots outside, as the pots could end up sitting in water for days!!! NOT so great!!!
I DO use the saucers turned upside down-- with the pot sitting on top of it, to keep all kinds of slugs and worms and bugs and vermine from crawling inside the pot. This is more important if you had to bring the pot inside for the winter. In Florida........I don't know if this is a concern???

Yes! I think all the plants in these pots should have the same watering reqirements-- if you can. However--what about a hard rain? That would negate everything.......

Hope some of this helps you! Gita

Denton, TX(Zone 7a)

I put a leaf, over the drainage hole and if the pot is a very large one..I put empty soda cans in the bottom, I think they work even better than the packing peanuts.

Huntersville, NC

RealGood info!

I had two huge pots: stood four feet tall about three feet wide.

and i did the stones in the bottom.
sure enough the blasted thing got water logged/clogged
guess the hole got clogged
and the blasted thin is now too heavy for me to even attempt to correct anytime soon without hiring help with a strong back!

had i know then what i know now
- id probably have used an artificial 'pot filler'.
i would be able to move said pot and plant would most probably still be alive!

they say there is always a Next time but im not so sure about that.

good info none the less

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)


WOW! our posts are 3 years apart!!!! Glad this got re-newed....
I myself have learned a few 'tricks" for big pots....One is to take another big pot (relatively smaller than what you have), then turn it upside down and put it inside the BIG pot. I don't think you want it reaching more than 1/2 way up the bigger pot??? I would shim the bottom of the inside pot so water can drain freely. Use some flat stones or such under the rim.

Empty soda bottles (any size--with caps on) and cans, as Melva suggested, also work.
AND--finally, if you really, really like a huge, decorative pot--you can always plant your plants in a regular black, garden pot and simply set this pot inside the bigger pot and it will look great. Elevate the smaller pot as needed--with brick or stone.

Hope some of this helps as well....Gita

Cincinnati, OH(Zone 6a)

Another suggestion to keep them from blowing over is to bury the bottom of the pot. Even if you just dig down a few inches and sink the pot in that hole it will help to stabilize the pot. If the garden soil below doesn't have good drainage you could put a couple of good size rocks under the container.


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