How to Choose an Outdoor Planter


If you are thinking of adding an outdoor planter to your garden landscape, you will want to consider many variables when you choose an outdoor planter. To choose an outdoor planter you must know what you are using it for; some plants go better in certain types of planters and some planters go better in certain types of landscape and climate. Choose an outdoor planter using six simple steps.

Step 1

Figure out the size of the planter you need. Make sure you understand how large the plant will become at full growth; this includes the root system which can become large balls for some plants or bushes. Estimate needing approximately three inches larger than the circumference of the root system for the plant. Plan on the length of time you will be using the planter; if the plant is still growing when you place it into the outdoor planter you will be moving it to a larger planter at a future date.

Step 2

Look at the bottom of the planter for drainage holes. Planters need proper drainage so water doesn't accumulate or settle along the bottom of the planter causing roots to rot or mold to form in the soil. Make sure there are enough holes or the holes are large enough to provide aeration for the roots which will allow them to breath and grow properly

Step 3

Consider the weight and size of the planter in relation to where you will be putting it. Understand that even a plastic pot will weight much more after filling it with soil and plants. Think about the amount of weight and weight distribution for the potential surface; decks and patios have weight restrictions. Placing a heavy planter on bare ground will cause sinking, while a light planter may be knocked over or be uneven.

Step 4

Understand the environment where you are using the outdoor planter. Dark or metal planters will heat soil and cause burning roots or stems. Clay pots cannot handle colder climates and can become fragile from temperature changes. Wood planters can rot in humid or wet areas such as near pools or in areas with lots of rain.

Step 5

Plan for the seasons. Make sure your outdoor planter can withstand the climate changes for your area. You may need to move the planter, and plants, indoors during winter. Make sure the planter is light enough to be mobile or can be placed on casters for easier movement.

Step 6

Pick a planter that goes with the overall landscape of the property. Keep with the color scheme of the house and surrounding area. Pick complementary colors unless you want to have something stand out as a focal point. Wood and clay planters work well in wooded areas, while concrete and metal planters work better in urban settings. .


Keywords: outdoor planter, landscape, choosing a planter

About this Author

William A. Swan is a Pennsylvania-based freelance writer who has written hundreds of articles relating to business, finance, travel, history and health. His current focus is on pets, gardens, personal finance and business management.