Princeton Capital Blog

What to Plant for the End of Summer

August 15th, 2014

Planting Flowers2What to Plant for the End of Summer

You want your place to look nice with some lovely flowers. But the weather is still hot during the day, and getting cooler at night, plus the days are getting shorter. So what should you plant in those planter boxes or pots on the front porch to keep the colors bright?

Better Homes & Gardens recommends these perennials for the transition of seasons. Check out the article to see all eleven recommendations.

  1. Bee Balm – The firework-like flowers draw the eye through the garden and lure butterflies and hummingbirds.
  2. Pink-and-White Celosia –¬†This sun-loving, old-fashioned annual produces a profusion of 4- to 5-inch feathery plumes from summer into fall.
  3. Pincushion Flower – This robust, rapidly growing, sun-loving perennial produces blue, pink, or violet blooms on erect gray-green stems from midsummer to fall.
  4. Cupid’s Dart – Large dark-center blue, violet, or white blooms rise on sturdy stems with heart-shape leaves.
  5. Zinnia – the more you cut, the more it blooms.

And don’t forget the classic marigolds and primroses for bursts of color.

How to Design A Flower Bowl

So you’ve bought all the flowers from your local garden center and you get home and look at the empty planter and then look at the flowers. If you’re not naturally inclined towards flower arranging, don’t panic.

You can create flower arrangements in your pots and planters that will make your friends and neighbors go “Wow, that looks terrific.”

  1. Plan the structure. When you’re selecting plants in 4″ or 6″ pots, you need to think about their eventual height, shape and growth habit.
  2. Where are they growing? Full sun? Partial sun? It’s important to group similar plants together. It’s also important to combine plants with similar moisture requirements.
  3. Look to contrast textures. If you have waxy leaves, mix that with feathery ferns.
  4. Be bold with the colors. Generate energy and excitement by combining complimentary colors such as purple and orange or yellow and blue. Or paint a more visually soothing composition by limiting yourself to related colors such as blues and pinks or reds and yellows.

How to Care for The Flowers

When caring for your color bowls, you’ll need to take into account where the planter is and what kind of moisture level the plant needs.

If you use self-watering containers, just keep an eye on the water level. If you use a drip system, align the amount of water dripped with the requirements of the plants.

A ceramic planter will stay cooler than a plastic one but that’s because the water is evaporating and you may need to water more frequently. To determine when the plant needs watering, stick your finger down into the soil and if is dry water the plant thoroughly. Remember to water in the morning or evening to prevent water from just evaporating before it can get to the plant’s roots.

Frequent watering will wash fertilizer out of the soil, and the plant will deplete the limited soil nutrients much more rapidly, so a regular feeding program should be established according to the type of plant and the manufacturer’s directions. During the growing season, look into either a slow release type plant food or a soluble complete fertilizer.

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