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Stylish Summer Container Recipe

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At Petersham Nurseries, we mostly use perennial plants to give a natural feel. We recommend using summer bedding (Annuals) for filling in smaller containers, like window boxes and small pots. Use any mix and amount of the following specimens, depending on the size of the pot, as long as it fills the entire container and commands presence. When the plants have finished flowering or when the frost hits in November transfer the perennials to the garden border.

Duration:
45 minutes
Serves:
n/a
Ingredients
1 large
Indian terracotta pot 35 - 38cm in diameter
1 bag
Multi-purpose compost
n/a
Liquid seaweed fertiliser
Choose 5 Perennials
Crocosmia - Emily McKenzie
n/a
Rudbeckia - Cherry Brandy
n/a
Helenium - Moreheim Beauty or Caneria
n/a
Agastashe - Blue Fortune or Tutti Frutti
n/a
Sedum - Purple Emperor
n/a
Dahlia - any of the Bishop series
n/a
Salvia - Love and wishes
At least 2 Annuals
Coleus - Sunset Boulevard
n/a
Petunia Mamba
n/a
Antirrhinum Liberty
n/a
Begonia Non-stop Mocca
Preparation
1
Having rocks or stones at the bottom of the pot is important as it allows drainage. Using saucers underneath the pots is recommended as it ensures the plants get enough water, especially when the weather is hot.
2
Fill container with compost - until two thirds full.
3
Start with the Perennials. Use the tallest first, adding it to the back of the pot (if the pot is to be placed in front of a wall or fence) otherwise arrange the plants just off centre. This helps to keep the container more natural, and stops it from looking too neat.
4
Continue to add plants using their colour as well as their heights as a guide. Trust your own creative instincts and initiative.
5
Infill using the Annuals and finish off with further Annuals placed around just one third of the edge. Don't go for the typical all-round edging- it doesn't look natural.
6
Mulch the top of the soil with moss, available to purchase at Petersham Nurseries. It looks wonderful and retains the moisture from the soil.
7
Remember to water well, allowing water to run through the container for several minutes each day.
8
Liquid feed with seaweed fertiliser. Shropshire fertiliser recommended.