THE DIRT - Adorn's tips for summer containers

Plant haircuts, watering and garden pests ... OH MY!    Plant haircut? If you have ever used margarita sweet potato vine in a pot before, you totally know what we're talking about. Typically late June is when we need to give our sweet potato vine plant babies their first haircuts. We don't like this aggressive plant to crowd out the filler plants or get too long. It grows like crazy so we end up giving it many haircuts before the end of summer. The purple and variegated types of sweet potato vine don't grow as profusely so we don't have to trim them back as often. Even though the margarita variety needs more maintenance, we still adore it for its pop of chartreuse color and fullness.  It wouldn't be summer without outdoor pests right? Unfortunately sometimes those bugs get into our container gardens. We are big fans of an insecticide called Eight which kills over 130 insects. Every year we battle bugs on hibiscus blooms and spraying with Eight a few times a week over two weeks will usually take care of the creepy crawlies. We recommend Natria Insecticidal Soap by Bayer Advanced as a great option for clients who prefer to use an organic product or if you are using it on or near herbs and veggies.  If we can leave you with three words of wisdom as we enter into the dog days of summer...WATER YOUR POTS! Seriously. We like to water first thing in the morning so the plants don't bake all day. Sorry to deliver this news, but you may need to water TWICE a day if your plants are in the full sun all day, especially if it is windy since the wind dries out the soil. If your plants are in the shade you may only need to water every other day or once every three days. Just pay attention to them. Are they wilting or getting crispy? If so, that's the plants saying, "More water please!"

Plant haircuts, watering and garden pests ... OH MY!


Plant haircut? If you have ever used margarita sweet potato vine in a pot before, you totally know what we're talking about. Typically late June is when we need to give our sweet potato vine plant babies their first haircuts. We don't like this aggressive plant to crowd out the filler plants or get too long. It grows like crazy so we end up giving it many haircuts before the end of summer. The purple and variegated types of sweet potato vine don't grow as profusely so we don't have to trim them back as often. Even though the margarita variety needs more maintenance, we still adore it for its pop of chartreuse color and fullness.

It wouldn't be summer without outdoor pests right? Unfortunately sometimes those bugs get into our container gardens. We are big fans of an insecticide called Eight which kills over 130 insects. Every year we battle bugs on hibiscus blooms and spraying with Eight a few times a week over two weeks will usually take care of the creepy crawlies. We recommend Natria Insecticidal Soap by Bayer Advanced as a great option for clients who prefer to use an organic product or if you are using it on or near herbs and veggies.

If we can leave you with three words of wisdom as we enter into the dog days of summer...WATER YOUR POTS! Seriously. We like to water first thing in the morning so the plants don't bake all day. Sorry to deliver this news, but you may need to water TWICE a day if your plants are in the full sun all day, especially if it is windy since the wind dries out the soil. If your plants are in the shade you may only need to water every other day or once every three days. Just pay attention to them. Are they wilting or getting crispy? If so, that's the plants saying, "More water please!"

Edible container gardens    One of our favorite things to do in the summer is to grow our own herbs. We use them when we cook and to create some fun seasonal cocktails.  Basil is a fantastic herb to grow in an outdoor pot. We harvest it a few times during the summer to make fresh pesto and then freeze the rest to enjoy during the winter months. As the basil grows you will want to remove the flowering part at the top of the basil stems. This means it is going to seed. You want the basil to keep its energy on creating big leaves and not spend its energy going to seed. Simply snip off the flowering part when you see it grow at the tops of the stems.   In the picture above we've added flat leaf parsley, curly leaf parsley, chives, sage, oregano and lemon thyme as fillers and spillers around the basil. In the pot to the right of the mixed herb planter, we used only mint. Mint is super invasive so planting it in a container is definitely the way to go unless you want it to spread ALL over your flower beds.

Edible container gardens


One of our favorite things to do in the summer is to grow our own herbs. We use them when we cook and to create some fun seasonal cocktails.

Basil is a fantastic herb to grow in an outdoor pot. We harvest it a few times during the summer to make fresh pesto and then freeze the rest to enjoy during the winter months. As the basil grows you will want to remove the flowering part at the top of the basil stems. This means it is going to seed. You want the basil to keep its energy on creating big leaves and not spend its energy going to seed. Simply snip off the flowering part when you see it grow at the tops of the stems.

In the picture above we've added flat leaf parsley, curly leaf parsley, chives, sage, oregano and lemon thyme as fillers and spillers around the basil. In the pot to the right of the mixed herb planter, we used only mint. Mint is super invasive so planting it in a container is definitely the way to go unless you want it to spread ALL over your flower beds.

New (to us) favorite plants for summer   Julie and I love to experiment with new plants at our own homes and if we like how they perform we'll plant them for clients.   This season we are loving the  soiree periwinkle  (pictured here). This is a beautiful spiller/filler that flowers non-stop and loves the heat and sun. No need to dead head so they are super low maintenance.   We have used  plumbago  only a few times over the past few years for clients who want a pop of blue. Julie has this beauty in her front planters now and it is a show stopper. Gorgeous large, light blue blooms that resemble small hydrangea blooms. There aren't many blue flowers so this one is extra special for that reason.  Proven Winners came out with a new type of petunia a few years ago called  Supertunia Vista . These are heat tolerant and don't require deadheading. They come in five colors but the pink bubblegum is our fave because we love pink!  If you need a thriller for a sunny or partially sunny area, try  horsetail reed grass . It is a fast grower and very invasive, so this is best for containers and not in flower beds. It would make a great privacy screen if grown in a trough. Just make sure to water it regularly.  Another fun thriller for a sunny or partially sunny area is  papyrus . We've used this a few times in the past and love its whimsical look. No need to deadhead, super easy to maintain.

New (to us) favorite plants for summer

Julie and I love to experiment with new plants at our own homes and if we like how they perform we'll plant them for clients.

This season we are loving the soiree periwinkle (pictured here). This is a beautiful spiller/filler that flowers non-stop and loves the heat and sun. No need to dead head so they are super low maintenance.

We have used plumbago only a few times over the past few years for clients who want a pop of blue. Julie has this beauty in her front planters now and it is a show stopper. Gorgeous large, light blue blooms that resemble small hydrangea blooms. There aren't many blue flowers so this one is extra special for that reason.

Proven Winners came out with a new type of petunia a few years ago called Supertunia Vista. These are heat tolerant and don't require deadheading. They come in five colors but the pink bubblegum is our fave because we love pink!

If you need a thriller for a sunny or partially sunny area, try horsetail reed grass. It is a fast grower and very invasive, so this is best for containers and not in flower beds. It would make a great privacy screen if grown in a trough. Just make sure to water it regularly.

Another fun thriller for a sunny or partially sunny area is papyrus. We've used this a few times in the past and love its whimsical look. No need to deadhead, super easy to maintain.

Let Adorn Help You    We all love pretty pots but not necessarily the upkeep, right? Let us know if you'd like to outsource the maintenance of your outdoor planters. Once a month, we'll pay your container gardens a visit to deadhead, trim and treat for garden pests as needed. Our residential and commercial clients REALLY enjoy this monthly service!  We'd love for you to follow Adorn on social media for more container gardening tips and inspiration.   https://www.facebook.com/adornplanters https://www.instagram.com/adornplanters https://www.pinterest.com/adornplanters

Let Adorn Help You


We all love pretty pots but not necessarily the upkeep, right? Let us know if you'd like to outsource the maintenance of your outdoor planters. Once a month, we'll pay your container gardens a visit to deadhead, trim and treat for garden pests as needed. Our residential and commercial clients REALLY enjoy this monthly service!

We'd love for you to follow Adorn on social media for more container gardening tips and inspiration.

https://www.facebook.com/adornplanters
https://www.instagram.com/adornplanters
https://www.pinterest.com/adornplanters

Curb Appeal Shout Out!    Dr. Hannah Vargas reached out to Julie for help with finding the perfect planters for her new office, Vargas Face and Skin Center in Prairie Village, KS. During their initial meeting, Dr. Vargas told Julie she wanted planters with simple, clean lines.Together they decided on four gorgeous zinc footed estate planters from Restoration Hardware (two for the front entrance and two for the back entrance). Dr. Vargas wanted green and white plants so Julie used boxwoods, sunpatiens, angel vine and pentas for the win!

Curb Appeal Shout Out!


Dr. Hannah Vargas reached out to Julie for help with finding the perfect planters for her new office, Vargas Face and Skin Center in Prairie Village, KS. During their initial meeting, Dr. Vargas told Julie she wanted planters with simple, clean lines.Together they decided on four gorgeous zinc footed estate planters from Restoration Hardware (two for the front entrance and two for the back entrance). Dr. Vargas wanted green and white plants so Julie used boxwoods, sunpatiens, angel vine and pentas for the win!

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