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Overwhelm your senses with this aromatic container garden for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens.  Featuring Hyacinth,Fittonia and Lemon Button Fern

As our countdown continues, I get more and more excited for spring. I can almost smell it! If you want to overwhelm your own senses with the smell of spring today’s container garden is the perfect remedy for you.

Ingredients:
1. Hyacinth (Tall)
2. Fittonia (Thick)
3. Lemon Button Fern (Trailing)

Overwhelm your senses with this aromatic container garden for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens.  Featuring Hyacinth,Fittonia and Lemon Button Fern

Hyacinth has such a sweet aroma. I just can’t get enough! The roots are super dreamy too. (Tip: When buying hyacinth be sure the blooms are still tight and have not yet opened. This will ensure several weeks of bloom power.)

Overwhelm your senses with this aromatic container garden for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens.  Featuring Hyacinth,Fittonia and Lemon Button Fern

Overwhelm your senses with this aromatic container garden for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens.  Featuring Hyacinth,Fittonia and Lemon Button Fern

Directions:
1. Combine all three plants and fill your home with the scents of spring

Overwhelm your senses with this aromatic container garden for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens.  Featuring Hyacinth,Fittonia and Lemon Button Fern

Maintenance:
1. After you are done with this container garden plant the hyacinth in your yard for repeat blooms year after year. Dig a hole 6 inches deep and plant root side down.

Overwhelm your senses with this aromatic container garden for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens.  Featuring Hyacinth,Fittonia and Lemon Button Fern

If you have a lot of patience (unlike me), this Egg-Shaped Hyacinth Topiary by Martha Stewart could be a fun garden project for you this Easter.

Overwhelm your senses with this aromatic container garden for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens.  Featuring Hyacinth,Fittonia and Lemon Button Fern

Have a great week, everyone!

I hope your days are filled with all the happiness that the scents of spring bring.

Missed one of the days of our 28 Days of Spring Container Gardens? Catch up here…

Day One

Day Two

Day Three

Day Four

Day Five

Day Six

Day Seven

Day Eight

Day Nine

Day Ten

Day Eleven

Day Twelve

Day Thirteen

Day Fourteen

Day Fifteen

Day Sixteen

Day Seventeen

Day Eighteen

Day Nineteen

Day Twenty

Day Twenty One

Day Twenty Two

Day Twenty Three

Day Twenty Four

Day Twenty Five

Day Twenty Six

Day Twenty Seven

Day Twenty Eight

Photos: The Photography of Haley Sheffield

In the South, football is a religious experience. If you’ve ever visited the South during the fall, you have more than likely experienced two things: college football and the tailgating that precedes every game. To show respect for your favorite team in true, southern fashion, it is imperative that your home reflects the spirit of the game.

An easy way to incorporate your game day pride in your interior décor is with container gardens full of flowers sporting your team’s festive colors. Violas and Pansies are available in just about any color – making it easy for you to find the perfect match.

Fun items to help create this look:

  • Galvanized trough/bucket
  • Soil
  • Team pennants
  • Team color pom-poms
  • Violas and Pansies in your team’s color

This container is a tad bit larger than usual, about 5 feet in length and 2 feet wide, and could easily be done on a smaller scale.

First fill half the container with bark because during the cooler months your plant will not need as much soil to grow. Plus it will save money on buying all that potting soil. The bark will make the container somewhat lighter, but putting wheels on the bottom, like we do, is a great way to move them around.

Next fill the other half of the container with soil. I prefer to use potting soil for mine and it is definitely worth the extra cost. The better the soil, the better the overall look of the container.

Potting Soil

Now it is time to select a color scheme that shows off your team spirit. For my example, I chose to create a container that represents Georgia’s red, white, and black pride. I used white flowers so to fully capture the Bulldog spirit I layered in some fun, game day pieces.

Tip: Repeat the same colors for the most impact

By using plants that come in larger pots you get instant gratification without the extra work. So as far as plants are concerned, the bigger the better! In a single line, place three of the White Cool Wave™ Pansy hanging baskets in the center of your container.

Planting Basket

Fill in the empty spaces with the 1 gallon, or pint size, white pansies.

planting gallon

Lastly, for additional texture, fill in the empty spaces with white Snow Princess® Lobularia.

Tip: After arranging all of the flowers, be sure to add more soil around your plants so that they do not dry out.

For even more game day fun, we had a local sign maker create these awesome outdoor pennants that we screwed onto the top of stakes that we purchased from Home Depot. Then we finished off our containers with pom-poms and other fun flare.

Finished GA

Below are a few other game day containers we rallied up.

GA Tech

The perfect play for a container garden win with Yellow Cool Wave™ Pansies

Alabama

To guarantee a floral victory – Penny Red blotch violas!

Florida

For a perfect score with your game day garden – Sorbet Orange Violas and Million Bells® Crackling Fire Calibrachoa.

Hope your favorite team comes out victorious this season!

Carmen

Building a container garden is as simple as 1-2-3! I have a theory of what makes for the most beautiful container gardens. It is called the Triangle Theory. The elements to this theory are that you have a tall plant, a thick plant and a trialing plant that are arranged to form a triangle in your container illustrated by the diagram below:

Some examples of tall plants for the sun include:

Cordyline, Purple Fountain Grass, Gaura (Perennial), Canna and Victoria Salvia

Canna Lilies are great for thriller in containers. Clockwise from top: Tropicanna Gold, 'Tropical Bronze Scarlet', Tropicanna and 'Tropical Rose' Canna.

Canna Lilies are great as thrillers in containers. Clockwise from top: Tropicanna Gold, ‘Tropical Bronze Scarlet’, Tropicanna and ‘Tropical Rose’ Canna.

Tall plants for the shade include:

Caladium, Coleus and Upright Fuchsia such as the variety Gartenmeister

Here is a great example of a shade container where Coleus is used as the thriller. This variety is called Red Kong.

Here is a great example of a shade container where Coleus is used as the thriller. This variety is called Red Kong.

Caladium is an excellent choice for a thriller when designing containers for shade.

Caladium is an excellent choice for a thriller when designing containers for shade.

Thick plants for sun include:

Heuchera (Perennial), Superbells Calibrachoa (my favorites are Cherry Star and Dreamsicle), Sunpatiens and Diamond Frost Euphorbia. The Calibrachoa and Euphorbia act as a 2-for-1 plant because they perform as the thick and trialing plant when used in containers.

Clockwise from top: 'Lime Marmalade' closeup, beautiful sun container with Heuchera as the thick plant, and 'Midnight Rose' with its unique purple leaves speckled in magenta.

Clockwise from top: ‘Lime Marmalade’ foliage, beautiful sun container with Heuchera as the thick plant, and ‘Midnight Rose’ with its unique purple leaves speckled in magenta.

Thick plants for the shade include:

Dragon Wing Begonias, Non-stop Begonias, New Guinea Impatiens and Impatiens

Non-Stop Begonias add a HUGE pop of color for the shade. This variety is Non-Stop Mocha Pink Shades.

Non-Stop Begonias add a HUGE pop of color for the shade. This variety is Non-Stop Mocha Pink Shades.

Trailing plants for the sun include:

Creeping Jenny (working in sun and shade – perennial), Angelina Sedum (perennial)

and Supertunia Vista Bubblegum Petunia.

Creeping Jenny's golden foliage is so vibrant and beautiful in this container garden.

Creeping Jenny’s golden foliage is so vibrant and beautiful in this container garden.

Trailing plants for the shade include:

English Ivy, Torenia and Trialing Fuchsia

Trailing Fuchsia make the most absolutely gorgeous shade trailer in a container.

Trailing Fuchsia make the most absolutely gorgeous shade trailer in a container.

One of my secret tips for making containers look good all-season long is to use a liquid fertilizer such as Miracle-Gro Bloom Booster (or a similar bud & bloom fertilizer) every two to three weeks. Think of fertilizer like a vitamin. When people take them regularly we perform better, the same is true for these living and breathing plants. With regular fertilizer, they will perform to their best ability.

Please remember that deadheading your plants is as important as fertilizing them. If faded flowers or seed pods are not removed from a plant it puts its energy into creating seeds and not flowers. Recently, I removed the seed pods from my fuchsia, fertilized them and they are pushing out new buds a few days later. I expect them to bloom well into our first frost. If you are unsure how to deadhead a particular plant, when shopping ask the staff at the garden center. They are sure to be able to help.

It is also very important to maintain the moisture in containers especially during times of drought. If it is really hot where you live, watering once every day may be necessary. A great way to tell is by sticking your finger in the container’s soil. If it is dry, your plants are sure to be thirsty, If wet, feel free to wait another day before watering. Many plants will show signs of dehydration such as puckering or browning on the leaves. Over watering can also be a huge issue. Remembering when creating your container garden that picking a larger container will help decrease the amount of time spend on watering. Since larger containers have more soil to retain moisture, they do not dry out as quickly as smaller containers.

With these simple and easy tips your container gardens should look stunning throughout the season.

Carmen

Check out my video on this very topic:

Click on the image to be linked to the video.

Click on the image to be linked to the video.

Want to turn a strawberry jar into something that can be used for entertaining? Then when you’re guests ask you where you got this fabulous piece – you can let them know that you made it yourself! Here’s what you will need for this DIY project:

– An Iron Table Top

– A Large Strawberry Jar (24″ tall x 22″ wide)

– 2 bags of Pine Bark (1.5 lb)

– 2 bags of Potting Soil (1.5 lb)

– 9 – 4″ plants including 2 Thyme, 2 Trailing Rosemary, 5 Decorative plants including 2 Supertunia Vista Bubblegum Petunia and 3 Creeping Jenny (feel free to substitute)

– 4 wooden folding chairs

– 36″ round piece of glass (optional)

Instructions:

First take your pine bark and put it into the bottom of the strawberry jar. Doing this ensures proper drainage and reduces the cost of the project because you are able to buy less potting soil. After you have filled the strawberry jar up part way, add your potting soil. You want to make sure to select a potting soil (instead of compost) with a time-released fertilizer, which will really help your plants perform. Feeding the soil into the side cups is an important step for planting.

Carmen & Lacey adding pine bark first to the bottom of the container.

Carmen & Lacey adding pine bark first to the bottom of the container.

The next easy step is to get the herbs and flowers planted. Start with the plants that you will be putting in the side cups. For ours, we have selected Thyme, Trailing Rosemary (Rosemarinus officianalis ‘Prostratus’), and Supertunia Vista Bubblegum Petunia. By selecting herbs, it will add a beautiful fragrance while you are enjoying outdoor meals with family and friends. Before planting the herbs, ripe off half of the root ball to make sure they are small enough to fit into the side cups. Don’t be afraid to do this – herbs are resilient and will recuperate quickly. To not overcrowd and give your plants plenty of space to grow, using 4″ plants will be just right for this project.

Simply go all the way around your strawberry jar until every side cup is planted rotating between the herbs and flowering plants. Make sure each cup is filled to the top with soil. After a week of watering, double-check that the soil level is the same as when it was first planted as it tends to escape. If not, add more soil to the side cups to ensure a healthy home for your plants.

Rotate your herbs and flowering plants when filling side cups.

Rotate your herbs and flowering plants when filling side cups.

When planting the top of your strawberry jar, make sure the soil is about 2″ below the rim. Take your Creeping Jenny (Lysimachia nummularia ‘Aurea’) and plant it in the top. This is a great trailing plant and won’t grow very high; making it the perfect plant for this project. Three plants are plenty to fill the top planting because it will fill in very quickly.

Three Creeping Jenny will work great for this project.

After everything is planted, give your container garden a good drink of water. Now it is time to enjoy your beautiful container garden as a table. Place four, inexpensive folding chairs around it, add the iron table top and its time to have a garden party! If you would like, add a 36″ round piece of glass to the top of your table when entertaining for a finished look and remove it when guests have gone home.

Your beautiful finished project – a gorgeous, patio table with an container garden as the base.

Invite some friends over for a garden cocktail party and show off your new work of art. Enjoy!

Carmen

Here’s a video to show the simplicity of the project!

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_3I9U90S8lc]