Potting Tips for Summer Blooms in Your Cottage Garden

As May arrives, it’s the perfect time to start planting your planters for summer blooms in your cottage garden or any garden, for that matter. Whether you have a small deck, patio, or simply want to add color and texture to your space, potting planters is a great way to infuse vibrancy into your garden. It’s also a perfect starting point for beginners.

We all love heading to the garden center to browse the colorful annuals and perennials available, but it can be overwhelming, even for experienced gardeners like myself. Do I choose petunias or geraniums? How do I mix and match different plants to create an eye-catching display throughout the summer months? Well, I thought it might be helpful to show you what I planted this year.

Note: This was recently planted and will fill in soon.

At Old Castle Cottage, we have planters and window boxes in both sun and shade, so it’s essential to select the correct plants. Color is crucial to me; I want purples, pinks, and whites. Within the plant selection for my light conditions, I choose colors that I like. If those aren’t your colors, choose ones you love, but remember, a color can look stunning on its own, but you want to keep in mind what colors complement each other on the color wheel. Do you want a burst of bright color, or a calming palette of pastels?

Don’t be afraid to be creative. You’ll want to have a good shape and form, so in general, you will need three different types of plants:

  1. Thriller: a large statement plant or plants that are tall and have a vertical growth habit. Place it in the center or, if not seen on all sides, it can be placed to the back. Some suggestions are Proven Winners’ Angel Face, Dahlias, Salvias, to name a few.
  1. Filler: this type of plant has a mounding habit. The goal is that it will fill in the gaps in your planter and can be seen from all angles. Some suggestions are Angel Wings, Proven Winners Diamond Frost Euphorbia, Dusty Miller, Sweet Alyssum, to name a few.
  1. Spiller: a trailing plant that complements the thriller and draws your eye down. This is planted at the edge of the pot, and the goal, again, is to be seen from all angles. Some suggestions are Vinca Vine, Sweet Potato Vine, Proven Winners Supertunia, Creeping Jenny, Bacopa, to name a few.
Note: This was recently planted and will fill in soon.

When potting your planters, be sure to choose a high-quality potting mix that is rich in nutrients and drains well. I add a slow-release fertilizer, Plant Tone. Once your planters are potted and placed in your garden or deck, be sure to water regularly and deadhead any spent blooms to encourage continuous flowering throughout the summer.

When antique shopping I love to find planters that I can incorporate in my garden. However, I found a few great antique style options on Amazon.

Potting in May for summer blooms in your cottage garden is a rewarding and enjoyable task. However, if this is not your thing, head to a garden center and buy one that is already done for you. The important thing is to get out and enjoy the beauty of your space.

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