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How to Choose the Right Pot For All of Your Houseplants


Every plant is unique and therefore has different requirements in order to grow and stay healthy. A quality pot will not only make your plant look its best, but it can also help keep them alive if you choose the right size pot with adequate drainage. 

Here, landscaping expert Richard Unsworth, author of of Garden Life (Buy on Amazon, $46.58), shares his eight tips for picking the best home for potted plants.

1. Plot Your Pot

Consider where your pot will be located. Are you looking for a statement or hero piece? Something imposing with definite wow factor? Or perhaps it’s more about functionality. For example, do you need slimline troughs to create privacy on a balcony?

2. Decide Your Personal Style

Think about your personal style and the interior/exterior of your home. Is it contemporary and slick, or traditional and formal? Look for a pot or planter to match. Above all, you need to choose a piece that you love, one that resonates with you.

3. Size Everything Up

Your pot needs to be size-appropriate for your space, but be bold in terms of scale. If in doubt, always go for the larger size. The last thing you want to do in a confined space is to use lots of little pots, as this will just make the space look cluttered and even smaller. Go for either one big specimen or a simple group of three.

4. Create An Interesting Composition

If you are buying a cluster of pots, it’s important to mix the textures and sizes in order to create an interesting composition. Try three different sizes in three compatible textures. I recommend using pots in the same color — personally, I love white — but in different textures. A slick and shiny fiberglass cylinder teamed with an old, lime-washed Turkish planter and a glazed Moroccan oil jar, for example, would make a perfect combination.

5. Be Careful With Color

Avoid strong primary colors, which can be jarring to the eye and draw too much attention to the pot. If you want some color contrast, choose a soft shade such as buttermilk, dark chocolate or white.

6. Make An Investment

It’s worth investing money in a hero piece for a prominent location. Use less expensive pots for more functional areas; in these spaces you want to look at the plants inside the pots rather than at the pots themselves.

7. Play With Materials

I am in love with terracotta. I think it’s a classic, underrated material that needs to come back into our gardens. I especially love big, hand-thrown terracotta pots that will age gracefully in the sun.

8. And Remember…

Always buy the best available potting mix and ensure that the pot is raised off the ground for good drainage. Rather than using feet, I use pieces of 10mm-thick compressed rubber to raise a pot. It creates an interesting shadow line at the base.

This article originally appeared on our sister site, Woman’s World.

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