Adding Structure to the Garden
By: Chris VanCleave, Chairman Helena Beautification Board
The idea of giving our garden spaces form and structure dates back to ancient times. A well placed planter can go a long way in creating a sense of structure in your garden. We found this concrete urn on the clearance table at a local garden center for $5. I decided to place it between two raised beds of roses. I stacked castle wall blocks about three feet high and placed the urn on top. At this height, your eye is easily drawn to it as you walk through the space. A friend in Arizona who creates cast concrete objects made the sign you see and I placed it in front of the base of the urn. In an instant, it created a focal point and a conversation piece in the garden. It is used all four seasons of the year.
Spring and Summer:
We fill this urn will petunias, geraniums and other seasonal blooms. Many local garden centers sell "drop in" pre-assembled containers like the one you see here. They do quite well.
We always fill this urn with the largest pot of yellow mums we can find. It gives the garden a welcome pop of color as the year draws to a close. I just leave the mums in the container they came in and simply drop them in the urn and water frequently.
I cut holly branches and magnolia stems from the neighborhood and loosely arrange them for a festive holiday display. You can also add this element to any existing planters you have to add a bit of holiday fun.
As you can see, it really is quite easy to add a little structure and color to the garden all year long. I'd love to see your creative containers. Email us a picture at info@HelenaBeautiful.com
About the Author
Nicknamed "The Redneck Rosarian", Chris VanCleave is passionate about gardening and growing roses. He is an active member of the Birmingham chapter of the American Rose Society, serving two terms as President. In 2007, he created the Rose Chat Podcast which has reached over a half a million listeners with news and information on growing the world's most beloved flower, the rose. He was a contributor to the 2015 Southern Living Gardening Book, has appeared on P. Allen Smith's Garden Home television show and was featured in the June 2015 issue of Southern Living Magazine. Locally, Chris serves as Chairman of the Helena Beautification Board where he has spearheaded efforts to create a sustainable landscape in one of the Top 100 places to live in the US. His writing is seen on About.com, HGTV, Home Depot Gardening Club and on his popular website; RedneckRosarian.com, where he chronicles his gardening adventures and explores an intrinsic mix of life, faith and gardening. An agent of change with over 20 years' experience in process innovation, Mr. VanCleave is leading the charge to reinvigorate horticulture societies and helping them to reach their full potential in the social media age.