Container Size - Knowledgebase Question

Cincinnati, OH
Question by cclark5690
January 2, 2001
I see in your catalog that you have collections of plants for containers. How do you know what size container to use? For instance, one of the collections has six plants. I don't have enough experience to know how big of a container to use. Is there some rule of thumb?

Answer from NGA
January 2, 2001


In the garden, spacing is often based on the expected mature width of the plant. For instance, a marigold variety growing ten inches wide would be planted about ten inches apart measuring from stem to stem or "on center". For a thicker look, they might be placed about eight inches apart, for a look with soil showing between the plants the gardener might put them about a foot apart.

For containers, however, there is no rule of thumb, except to say the plants are usually crowded a bit to give a very full look sooner. The plants are also coddled with ample water and fertilizer to keep them at their prime because the containers tend to be a focal point. (You do not want them so crowded that they cannot get enough light, water or nutrients, however.) Since it is a container you can also remove, add and rearrange a bit during the season to keep things looking their best.

I'm sorry I can't be more specific since the guesstimate would be based on the plants you want to use.

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