Plants for Patio Planters

Patio planters bring color and texture to the patio. They come in many sizes to use on small or large patios and accommodate a range of plant sizes. Patio plants with a billowing, trailing form or upright shape create an attractive display within planters. Filled with bright annual and perennial flowers or evergreen shrubs, patio planters are sure to jazz up any patio space with vibrancy.

Wild Petunia

Wild petunia (Petunia integrifolia) is an annual flower that produces masses of blooms and bright green foliage that looks striking spilling over a patio planter. Their purple to lavender funnel-shaped flowerheads grow 1 ½ inches wide and produce nonstop blooms from May until the first frost. Wild petunia has a trailing habit and billowing shape. They grow 1 to 3 feet tall and have a vigorous growth rate to cover the patio planter quickly. Wild petunia flowers do not require deadheading but needs a moderate amount of moisture to thrive. They grow best in full sun and loamy soils. You can grow wild petunia in all USDA zones.

Verbena Imagination

Verbena 'Imagination' (Verbena speciosa 'Imagination') is an annual flower with masses of purple blooms. The cluster-like blooms cover the plant all summer to create a striking display. Verbena imagination has a fast growth rate and cascading habit that reaches 3 to 6 feet wide and up to 3 feet tall. They are drought- and frost-tolerant, creating a hardy flower variety. Verbenas thrive in full sun and moist, well-drained soils. Verbena 'Imagination' grows as an annual in all USDA zones.

Dwarf Alberta White Spruce

Dwarf Alberta white spruce (Picea glauca 'Conica') is an evergreen shrub that creates a commanding presence when planted in a patio planter. Their compact, dense cone shape is attractive and when placed within the planter to flank a patio door or staircase, creates a showy display. Dwarf Alberta grows up to 10 feet tall and has a spread of 2 to 3 feet. Its soft leaves are bright green and remain vibrant year-round, an added bonus for the patio. The leaves on dwarf Alberta are highly aromatic and when crushed, produce a scent. Dwarf Alberta white spruce grows best in full sun and moist, well-drained soil. They grow in USDA zones 5b to 7.


Catmint (Nepeta spp.) produces a plethora of blue flowers that grow along the upright spikes. The blooms' colors range from blue to white and violet. Catmint grows 12 to 36 inches tall and has an upright, clumping form that fills out the planter beautifully. A summer blooming perennial flower, catmint produces green leaves that when crushed, are enjoyed by cats. Catmint grows best in full sun and well-drained soil. They are hardy in USDA zones 3 to 8.

Keywords: patio planter plants, wild petunia, verbena imagination, dwarf Alberta spruce, catmint

About this Author

Callie Barber is a writer, designer and photographer in North Carolina. Barber's love for design and writing inspired her to create Design Your Revolution, a blog that shares creative and affordable ways to decorate your indoor and outdoor living environment. Her articles have appeared in and and her photography has been featured in "Automotive News" magazine and