Plants for Garden Urns

Among container gardens, urns serve as a sophisticated addition to the landscape. Urns consist of molded concrete designed into a rounded planter with a pedestal base. Gardeners choose plants for urns based on sunlight requirements for the area and pleasing characteristics of the plant. Considerations include foliage, flowers and trailing growth habits to spill over the rim of the planter. The height of a garden urn also allows you to select taller plants for use in the container garden.


The tough geranium deserves a mention as a viable garden urn plant. Geraniums have height, beautiful round-leaf foliage and stunning compact blooms that do justice to the height of a garden urn. The most common type of geranium is the zonal geranium. Gardeners use these plants in containers or as bedding plant. The ivy geranium represents an excellent choice for a garden urn in a sunny location. This plant features the compact flower heads and rounded leaves of a typical geranium. The ivy geranium does have a trailing growth habit that perfectly suits a large urn.


Impatiens features brilliant green foliage and long-lasting flowers. This partial shade annual produces plenty of blooms that last throughout the growing season. Flowers come in a wide array of colors. Blooms are disc-shaped and flat with five distinct petals. Impatiens grow to a mature height of at least 10 inches. The beauty of using this plant in a garden urn lies in the plant's ability to fill the entire planter. Impatiens spread outward and often reach 2 feet across. This plant grows to the size of the planter and produces continuous blooms that don't require any deadheading. Impatiens offer the gardener a low-maintenance annual with a stunning floral display.


No recipe for a container garden insists that it must contain a flowering plant. Coleus provides tremendous color in the foliage without the need for any further flowering characteristics. Coleus is a shade-loving annual with an upright growth habit. Foliage color takes on many shades of green, magenta, yellow and white. The leaves of this plant vary greatly by cultivar and often consist of a bright center color with a different color edging for contrast. Leaves also feature a fuzzy texture that adds further interest to the container garden. Coleus grows to a mature height of up to 24 inches and provides a stately plant for the garden urn. Plant alone or with complementary annuals that accent the coleus leaf colors. This plant performs best in full shade and prefers well-drained soil. Water regularly to keep foliage from wilting.

Keywords: garden urns, designing garden urns, plants for urns

About this Author

S.F. Heron is an avid gardener with three years of experience in online writing and a working background in aviation and earth and ocean sciences. She is published on various sites, including Helium, eHow and Xomba. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in journalism from the University of Maryland.