Container garden questions.
Julie Anderson
March 15, 2013 in Design Dilemma
I am making several container gardens this summer to serve two purposes: 1. To decorate a garden alongside my driveway while I try to suffocate the bishop's weed that has invaded. and 2. To transport the pots to my daughter's wedding site.
My questions: 1. What can I use in the bottom for drainage that would be lightweight to make it easier to transport the pots?

2. Using red dahlias as the center and looking for an ivory or gold flower that is shorter to fill it out.
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You can use packing peanuts (not the biodegradable ones) - or break up polystyrene packaging if you have any.
What time of year for the gold/ivory flower it is an annual? Where are you
March 15, 2013 at 10:11am   
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It's really not actually necessary to add drainage to the bottom of a pot, except holes in the bottom for water to escape. That "layer of gravel" that people talk about doesn't actually do anything. Soil will soak drain just fine without it. BUT, if you have a big, deep pot and you just really need to lighten it up and don't need the root space, then by all means do some filling in. Packing peanuts or other styrofoam will work fine like ASVinteriors said. You can use bubble wrap - the ones with great big bubbles, not the little popping paper stuff, or if you have even more space to fill, even empty soda bottles with the caps screwed back on. You might want to make a false bottom out of plywood (with some small drain holes drilled in) to set on top, to keep the crushing and shifting down to a minimum.
March 15, 2013 at 11:00am   
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When I first read this post my initial thought was packing peanuts. Glad to see someone else thought of it too!

One other thing I like about the packing peanut idea is that some soil is likely to filter down into it making the pot a bit more evenly balanced. I'd worry that something like a false bottom or a less permeable medium would make the pots really top heavy. It would make them tricky to lift and depending on the shape of the pot, possibly make them tend to tip over.
March 15, 2013 at 11:25am   
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Onthefence is right about being top heavy. I wouldn't suggest that for tall, skinny planters. Only for big ones, wider than they are tall. Obviously if they're 3 feet tall and two feet across, you dont' want them toppling over because all the weight is at the top.
March 15, 2013 at 11:31am   
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Julie Anderson
I've tried using packing peanuts in other containers. I had trouble with them floating to the top on the dirt. Maybe I used too many. Maybe I'll just use all dirt and let them dry out a few days before we move them for the wedding.
March 17, 2013 at 12:18pm   
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Julie Anderson
I live in western New York. Our growing season is mid-May to October.
March 17, 2013 at 12:20pm   
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