Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Posh Purpose: Styling Your Patio Garden

I hope everyone had a great Memorial Day with friends and family!  Mr. 3 and I had the most relaxing and productive weekend that we have had in quite some time.  We mixed in a little bit of housework (cleaning off our patio, hanging artwork in the living room and guest bedroom, and lots of laundry) with a bunch of fun (going to the movies, taking a bicycle ride (which is more terrifying than fun for me), grabbing ice cream in Old Town Alexandria, and antiquing for me).  One of our weekend treats was going to Home Depot to pick out plants for our patio garden.  I had originally thought that I would pick up a few terracotta pots and paint them to match my green, pink, gold, and black color scheme going on out on the patio...buuuuuut then I found these cute ceramic pots at Michael's which saved me the trouble of getting them painted:

The pink pots were originally $4.99 and the white pot was $9.99, but Michael's was running a 50% off sale and I had a 10% off total purchase coupon.  Which brought the pink pots to $2.25 and the white pot to $4.50.  The pink pots had a hole for drainage and the saucers were attached to the pots.  The white pot also had a hole for drainage, but didn't come with a saucer (I had an extra one already).  Overall, I thought these were a great deal!

I decided to plant banana peppers, jalapenos, basil, and mint with the hopes of spicy salsa, caprese salad, and mojitos for the summer!  Planting the peppers and herbs was super easy.  I chose to buy the seedlings rather than the seed packets since I figured there was less chance for planting error, overwatering, and neglect if I picked out something that had already gotten a good start.  I also didn't feel like waiting 4-6 weeks for my crops to come in.  The plants cost between $3.33-$3.68 each and I picked up a really small bag of organic potting for about $5. Since my garden is very, very small, I just used a solo cup to scoop out the dirt rather than buying trowels or gloves.

Aren't they cheerful?  I love the bright pop of color that they bring to the patio and I'm going to save a good bit of money on pricey basil and mint even if I only get a few "harvests" out of them.  Pre-packaged basil and mint usually cost between $3-4 at the grocery store.  Even if I only get to use them twice this summer I will pretty much break even on the cost of the plant and pot.

Here's a few tips for styling your patio garden:

1. Check out craft stores for prettier and cheaper pots than you can find at Home Depot.  There were no pink pots to be had at Home Depot and the cheapest fancy ceramic pot I saw was $7.

2. Take your color scheme into consideration.  I love that the bits of green plants play off the pink and white outdoor rug and my outdoor entertaining servingware.  Try to find pots that bring a pop of color to your patio...it may help remind you to water them and also use the plants you've so carefully planted.

3. Buy plants that you think will last on your patio.  I have indirect sunlight pretty much all day long with a few hours of direct sun as well, which will be great for all my plants.  I decided not to buy bell pepper or squash because we have a big tree that a squirrel could very easily crawl up and jump onto our patio to grab a tasty snack.  I think it will stay away from my hot peppers...at least after the first time.

4. Go with multiple small sized pots if you don't have much space or if your available space is awkward.  If you have enough space and don't want so many containers, buy one or two large sized pots and plant multiple items in them like herbs in one and peppers in another.

Anyone else tried to make an apartment garden?  Send us pictures!

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