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Make A Combo Planter For Yourself

Jun 6

The majority of Big Tex Urban Farms' posts have been about farming, but we also do a lot of work in the decorative horticulture world. With spring in the air, I wanted to offer some information on some of the work we undertake to help beautify Fair Park, such as making attractive combo planters. I'll provide some design strategies and plant selection suggestions in this blog so you may construct your own lovely arrangements!


Using various types of plants in the same pot to produce a distinctive show is the method of creating combination planters. Combo planters often include at least three different kinds of plants, however this is not always the case. Plants of various colors, textures, and sizes are utilized in tandem to produce an eye-catching planter. Some people, like my Urban Farms' "Second-in-Command," Barron Horton, simply have a natural talent for it. I wasn't always adept at making fantastic combination planters, but I've researched and practiced a lot to improve my abilities. I'd want to share what I've learnt with you so that you may make beautiful combination planters, too.


"Thrill, fill, and spill" is a popular phrase you'll hear when you begin your experiences in making combination planters. That's something you'll probably read in your favorite gardening publications again and over again. This is the blueprint for your planter's construction:

The "thrill" comes first. The goal is to create a design that revolves around a "wow" plant. It might be a full-blooming shrub, a very scented plumeria, or even a plant with a cool color scheme. Anything that will elicit a "wow!" reaction from them. Your "thrill" plant should climb above the other plants in the combination planter, ideally.
Next, you'll utilize the "fill" to fill up the majority of the remaining vacant space in the pot. These alternatives do not have to be dull. Filler plants, for example, might be vibrant flowers. Petunias and marigolds in the spring, and Graffiti pentas or dipladenia in the summer, are a few of my favorites. For shaded areas, I also suggest begonias, impatiens, and caladiums. Filler plants may be single or multi-colored, and more than one variety of blooming plant can be employed.
Finally, the "spill" will consist of plants that will cascade over the pot's edge. In a perfect world, your combination planter would contain at least three points of "spill," but this isn't a must. Spillers include ivies, lobularia 'White Stream,' calibrachoa, and sweet potato vine.


When it comes to creating combination planters, here's another method that I often use. Begin with a plant that is tall or has a strong vertical feature. Start with a tiny tree, such as a Japanese maple, or an erect plant, such as an iris, or an attractive grass. It should be placed in the pot's middle or at the rear. Next, pick where you want your three to five spill spots to be, and plant them as near to the container's edge as possible. Finally, plant whichever flowers you like in all of the open soil in your container. Consider your color choices and attempt to choose hues that complement one another. Use basic color schemes or a variety of colors and textures to create a unique look. Have fun with the process and be creative!


All of our combination planters will be on show during the Fair. Everything, including our 100-gallon bespoke concrete pots, hanging baskets, and glazed ceramics, is used to create combination planters across the grounds. Come see the hanging baskets in front of Grand Place, the glazed pots in any of our eating establishments, and our enormous colorful concrete pots around the fairgrounds to see examples of combination pots in action next year when you attend the State Fair of Texas. Combo planters are used by several of the contestants in our landscaping competition.


Naturally, food plants may be used in combination planters. To decorate our livestock area during the Fair, Big Tex Urban Farms uses corn and okra in cattle troughs along with flowers. Dinosaur kale serves as the thriller plant in three of the glazed pot groupings in front of the State Fair of Texas Administration building throughout the winter months. Citrus trees have also been used as centerpieces in combination planters, and I strongly suggest them if you wish to add citrus to your landscape.

This spring, combo planters are all the rage, and with good reason: they're a lot of fun to construct. I hope my suggestions are useful, but most importantly, I encourage you to go out there and be inventive. I'll be back with more urban gardening ideas and techniques shortly. Until then, I wish you all the best in your gardening endeavors.