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Maximizing your Container Garden   

Do you have aspirations of English Ivy weaving it's way up iron rod  trellises or do you have visions of a bountiful Martha Stewart style vegetable garden ? Most renters have space limitations that shrink these dreams to their small patio or porch.  With a little positive thinking and planning you can enjoy all the benefits of gardening, right from your porch or window sill. 

1. Choose a big pot with enough space for a variety of flower colors and leaf textures.  A top diameter of 18 or 24 inches is ideal. Big container gardens are too heavy to move easily, so put your container in position before you add potting soil. 

2. Whatever you decide to plant, keep in mind that all the plants will be sharing the same soil and space within the container.  The grouped plants should all require the same relative elements of water and light. 

3. Aim for eye pleasing contrast using a variety of colors and textures.  Don't be afraid to mix vegetable plants and decorative flowers.  Read the nursery tags for information on average sizes and plan accordingly. 

See our Container Soil Recipe for details on how to make a mix that works. Fill the container to within about 4 inches of the rim with moist potting mix, then arrange the plants to your liking and fill in with more soil. As the seasons change, replace individual plants that are past their prime. This will insure that you have attractive looking containers blooming all year long. 

Reminder: Plants in containers go through water more quickly than if they are planted in the ground. Check for moisture daily especially on sunny days.  Happy Planting ! 

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