Many getting started in container gardening buy potted flowers and plants from garden centers. These common plants are generally found in most garden centers or nurseries and are well suited for containers put on patios and decks. Potted plants can also be used in temporary portable garden spots where the containers are arranged according to shape and size of the plant.
Caladium bicolor from the arum family of plants, also referred to as caladium or angel wings, is a perennial that is good for shade and containers. It has showy leaves that are 6 to 12 inches long with varying shape, size and color. There will be a 9-inch, green and white flower cluster and white berries on a fleshy stalk. Caladium grows up to 2 feet high and 2 feet wide. Grow caladium in well-drained soil in partial to full shade and propagate via tuber division or seed in USDA hardiness zones of 9 through 12.
Chrysanthemum hybrids from the aster/daisy family of plants, also referred to as mum or garden mum, is a fast growing easy to grow evergreen perennial. The leaves are dark green, but blooms will vary widely in size, shape, color and type. Blooms occur in the summer and fall with some blooming in spring too. The plant itself may get 5 feet tall. These grow best in acidic, moist soil in sun to partial sun. Propagate via division or cuttings in USDA hardiness zones of 5 through 9.
Antirrhunum majus from the figwort family of plants, also referred to as the common snapdragon, is an easy-to-grow, fast-growing perennial, grown as an annual. It is a hummingbird attractor. The sizes vary between 3 feet tall down to 4 inches tall. The flowers are in all colors of the rainbow, except for blue. Grow in well-drained soil in full sun or partial shade. Propagate via seed in USDA hardiness zones of 4 through 11.
Cyrtomium falcatum from the polypody fern family of plants, also referred to as the holly fern, is an evergreen, easy-to-grow perennial. The fronds are dark green and glossy, looking similar to the foliage on a holly plant. These ferns grow up to 2 feet tall and 3 feet wide. Grow these plants in acidic, well-drained soil in partial to full shade. Propagate via division in USDA hardiness zones of 6 through 11.