Garden Planters – Ideas for a Contemporary Garden

There are many reasons why garden planters are great in a garden. The first being that they are very low maintenance – watering is the only thing they require.  Container gardening is really suited to people who want some colour in their garden with minimum hassle or effort. There is an endless array of pots & planters for gardeners to choose from.

In a more modern garden slim line black or white planters in tall tapered or square shapes can make a good impact. These contemporary Garden Planters can be planted up with architectural plants (plants chosen for their form, habit, shape or foliage) such as yuccas, Phormium, Fatsias, Acers, Bamboos or if your pot is larger enough – a Tree Fern. When choosing planting for your planter be sure that they are in proportion to the size of your planter. Really a shrub or tree can only grow as large as the root ball will grow. So if your planter is small your shrub will remain small. Using too small a planter can lead to stunted growth, sparse foliage and stem die back. A good rule of thumb when buying planters is:  if in doubt buy the bigger one!

Contemporary planters belong in a contemporary garden. The balance and contrast of lines and forms should be the main attraction. For example a tall planter in front of horizontal sections of a timber screen, planted with sharp, pointed yucca will look impressive. The colour palette can then be quite muted with single tones of browns, blacks and green. A single splash of colour would generally by introduced in the form of a tall herbaceous flower such as red hot pokers, Alliums, Astibles or Phlox.

Contemporary planters should be positioned in harmony, symmetry or balance with each other. The Rhythm of 5 identical planter positioned along a wall or the juxtaposition of 3 similar shape but varied sized planters is all that is needed for visual impact in a minimalist modern garden.

Some suggestions would include:

Use dark coloured planters on light coloured paving. This works well if the paving detail or edging is the same colour as the planter.

Try to match the paving and planter size. I.e. if you paving is 500 x 500 flags then choose a planter that is 500 x 500 square or tapered. This will continue the theme of ‘clean line’ & minimalist design

Aim of soften the look. Often minimalist gardens fail to offer a source of relief. Planting is the best way to soften a garden. Be sure that the plants you choose are proportional to the pot and not too small. The Use of an ornamental garden around the base and then in the top of a planter can also help to soften the look

Use of lighting can really bring out the best in a planter, especially on a modern scheme as you can highlight the symmetry creating from the planters by night using carefully positioned spot lights