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How to Plant Flowers in Planters

By Suzie Faloon ; Updated September 21, 2017
Planters add floral beauty to an area where gardens are impossible.
Flowering Baskets and Planters in an English Back garden image by Chris Lofty from Fotolia.com

Planters are an asset in areas where the soil is less than desirable for healthy plant growth. Move the containers to feature flowers in bloom or to give more space to an area during an event. Planters give easy access for plant maintenance and weeding. Whiskey barrels, window boxes, large pots and urns are types of planters that complement indoor and outdoor living areas. Flowers and planters should be chosen to blend well with one another. Color, potential plant size and the mass of flowers have to be taken into consideration when choosing a planter.

Urn planters have room for a large capacity of plants.
img2141 image by Christian Bridgwater from Fotolia.com

Assemble all of your supplies in a location where you have plenty of space to work. Thoroughly clean a recycled planter with water and bleach to kill any bacteria, disease or pests from previous use. Soak a planter that is constructed of clay or terracotta overnight to fill the pores and ensure plant hydration from the start.

Drill 3/4-inch drainage holes in the sides at the bottom of the container if there are none. Cover the holes on the interior of the planter by placing broken crockery or stones in the pot. This prevents soil from blocking the holes or leaking out of the container.

Pour a light potting soil and compost mixture into the container. This keeps the roots well aerated.

Seedlings should have healthy root systems.
neurtured seedling image by leafy from Fotolia.com

Select plants such as geranium, alyssum, lobelia, pansy, marigold, daisies and other annuals that go well together. Dig holes with the trowel that meet the depth the individual plants and root systems require. Instructions will be found on commercial insert tags or the packets from seedlings grown at home.

Remove plants from packs or pots. Tap the bottom of the container if resistance is felt. The root system may have overgrown the container capacity.

Hold the plant by the stem in one hand at the soil line. Lower the plant into a hole. Trowel dirt gently around the roots of the plant to fill in the hole.

Water and fertilizer will help plants thrive in a planter.
gardening image by JJAVA from Fotolia.com

Add a layer of mulch on top of the soil in large planters to slow down the evaporation of moisture.


Things You Will Need

  • Potting soil
  • Compost
  • Garden trowel
  • Mulch


  • Water the plant soil in the morning or evening when sun exposure is very low. Try to keep the water off the plants as it is the root system that needs hydration.
  • Rainwater is the best hydration source for flowering plants.


  • Drainage is key for a successful flower garden in planters. Excess water will kill the plants.

About the Author


Suzie Faloon is a freelance writer who has written online content for various websites. As a professional crafter and floral designer, Faloon owned a florist business for nearly 25 years. She completed the Institute of Children's Literature course in 1988.