How to Plant in Big Plastic Pots


Some plants grow to be quite large and, therefore, need large pots to accommodate their size if you decide to plant them in containers. Very large containers for such plants can be quite pricey and heavy, however. Plastic pots are more practical to use for these large plants. First, they are not as expensive as clay or ceramic pots. Second, they are not as heavy in case the container plant needs to be moved. However, there are a few tricks to planting in a big plastic pot.

Step 1

Choose a plastic pot with drainage holes. If the pot doesn't have drainage holes, punch or drill a hole in the bottom. Crumple up the individual pages of old newspapers and fill the bottom half of the pot with them. Do not pack them down, though. Just toss them loosely into the pot. The newspapers will not harm the plant, but they will help to make the pot lighter; because you will not be using as much potting soil to weigh down the pot.

Step 2

Pour enough potting soil into the pot to just cover the newspaper.

Step 3

Center your plant in the pot. The root ball should be just a few inches (about 4 to 6 inches) below the rim of the pot.

Step 4

Fill the pot with potting soil, making sure that you keep your plant straight.

Step 5

Pack down the potting soil and push the plant down into the dirt, making sure that the plant is firmly in the soil.

Step 6

Add more potting soil until you have filled the pot to about 2 inches below the rim.

Tips and Warnings

  • Plants in plastic pots do not receive the nutrients that they would when growing in the ground; therefore, you should fertilize your plant regularly. Depending upon the type of plant, you usually need to apply a balanced fertilizer about every three to months. Even though the newspaper helps to make the pot lighter, do be careful when moving your plant. Very large pots are still heavy, and you can injure your back if you don't take proper care.

Things You'll Need

  • Big plastic pot
  • Large bag of potting soil
  • Newspapers


  • "The Practical Guide to Container Gardening;" Susan Berry and Steve Bradley; 1995
Keywords: how to plant in big plastic pots, planting in large pots, plastic pots, big plastic pots for plants, large plastic pots for plants

About this Author

Dena Bolton has written for local newspapers and magazines since 1980. She currently writes online for various sites, focusing on gardening. She has a BA in Political Science and German and graduate credits in Latin American Studies from East Tennessee State University. In addition, she is a TN Master Gardener.