Brighten your patio, balcony or terrace with planters that make as great an impression as their contents
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Flowers and foliage go a long way to making your outside space look gorgeous, but if you want to maximise the impact of container planting, there’s another element to consider. Planters in standout shades will provide an extra hit of colour – no nurturing required. So why not try out some of these plant pot ideas?
Here’s a solution for a display if you want to major on foliage plants and pale blooms but still add some colour. Choose a handful of toning shades for the pots and line them up.
The rules? Use the same style and material for the pots to make the group hang together, and repeat colours within the display so it looks thought-out and not random.
Pack a punch
Red and green is a scrumptious natural combination – think strawberries, poppies and red berries nestling amid glossy green leaves… The designers of this garden have exploited the powerful pairing with tall red planters and cascading foliage, plus lush grass planted below.
If you’re repeating the feature, make sure your version isn’t lost against the backdrop. Opt for tall planters (these reach halfway up the fence) and fill the entire width of the space.
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Brighten beyond the pot
Tall walls or fences and limited space are a recipe for a garden that’s short on greenery. Here, the problem’s been tackled with vertical planting to boost the soft landscaping without filling up the decking, allowing space for a table and chairs. Go for green planters like these, and the effect is enhanced.
If yours is a tiny balcony or terrace, you might like to steal the idea of furniture in vivid green, too, to tip the balance further in favour of natural garden shades.
If you like the idea of colourful planters, but want a more gentle approach, how about using a (deliberately) rusted metal finish, as seen here? (Search for ‘weathering steel planters’ or use the trademark name, ‘Corten steel planters’.) The tone of the weathered material is warm but softer than orange.
It can take a few months for the protective rust layer to fully form. A stand under the planter will help to prevent staining to the surface below during the process.
See the sky
Harmonious blues and greys link the planters on this rooftop terrace with the shades of the sky above, and they give the traditional box balls they’re planted with a modern makeover.
This home has a spectacular city view, but if your garden has a less interesting vista, tall planters like these are an effective way to block it when you’re sitting out.
Check where your sightline falls from garden chairs before investing, and bear in mind that dense plants like these form the best screen.
Create a picture
Take indoor design skills outside to brighten a dull fence. This display of planting works just like a gallery wall, with the individual elements arranged to create a pleasing whole in terms of shape and colour.
Just as with framed pictures, the best approach is to arrange them on the floor until you’re happy before hanging them.
In blues and greys, these frames tone easily with the planting, while an accent of red at the centre is a real eye-catcher.
Follow the architecture
This colourful planter display takes its cue from the regular row of chimney pots behind, echoing the architectural features, but adding statement colour that tones with the wooden decking.
Get the look with a grouping of three planters – or even five in a large space – to swerve the formality of symmetry and create a relaxed outdoor area.
How do I get the perfect decking?
This garden’s already rich in colour from both blooms and foliage so, rather than introducing new colour, the planter repeats the hottest of the hues to add a tall focal point to the space.
The low plant inside is small for such a large container, but its size allows it to become part of the planting along the top of the wall, while the colour of the pot balances the red blooms on the other side of the terrace.
Play with opposites
White planters contrasted with dark stone landscaping can be a powerful punctuation point in a garden design. Here, the threesome show off verdant arum lilies.
In their position right beside the windows, they do double duty as a feature that can be enjoyed from inside the house, too, linking exterior and interior.
This garden’s uplights are also an idea worth copying to show off foliage plants to their best advantage.
Have you used planters in your garden? What colours and materials did you choose? Share your ideas, experiences and photos in the Comments section.
Red Powder Coat Galvanised Zinc Planter, 100x23x23 cm – £41.99
Even if you only have a windowsill, you can still get in on the colourful act with this bold red planter, or browse hundreds of other plant pots in the Houzz Shop.