By Susan Patterson, Master Gardener
Container gardening is the perfect option for people who want a splash of color but are lacking in space. A container can be easily placed on porches, patios and decks for a burst of color all season long. Most wildflowers are not picky about soil and don’t mind growing in close quarters; in fact, this is how they look their best. As one mass of color, the impact is the greatest. Wildflowers in containers is a fantastic way to garden without fuss.
Selecting a Container for Potted Wildflower Plants
Any container that will hold soil will do fine for wildflowers. Make sure that the container is clean and dry before you begin. If there are no drainage holes in the bottom of the container, make several to allow the water to drain.
Good choices for containers include half whiskey barrels, plastic pots, or wooden window boxes. Even something like an old tire or an old wheelbarrow make neat places to plant wildflowers.
How to Grow Wildflowers in Pots
If desired, you can also place some pea gravel in the bottom of larger containers to help with drainage. Use a lightweight, porous planting medium in your container. This will help the flowers establish and the water drain. Mixing a lightweight planting medium with some compost is an excellent idea because it gives the plants plenty of nutrients.
Purchase high quality wildflower seed mixtures with a high germination percentage, for either sun or shade, depending on where you are locating your container. It is always a good idea to choose wildflower plants that are suitable for your growing region. If you are unsure of what does well, visit your local Cooperative Extension Office. They can assist you in making your selection. Follow the planting instructions and watch your container grown wildflowers take off.
Caring for Container Grown Wildflowers
Potted wildflower plants require little attention other than watering when dry. A light layer of mulch on top of the planting medium will help retain moisture.
Depending on what you plant, some wildflowers will benefit from deadheading.