I live in the city. My yard is approximately the size of a postage stamp. Here it is below in all it’s postage stamp glory.
However, I do have a front porch….
and a back porch…
a back balcony (no pics because we never use it), and a roof deck….
to decorate with flowers! Container planting is the way to go. I thought it would be fun to explore some of the things I have come up with and then dive into some inspiration pics.
When it comes to container planting, I seriously lack creativity. Not for lack of trying. I just can’t seem to get a mix of plants in one container all growing, blooming, and looking healthy all at the same time. So I tend to stick to one variety in abundance such as impatiens and petunias. You just can’t go wrong with them.
In the picture below, you can see I took one large petunia plant (bought at B.J.’s for $11) and broke it up and crammed it into one of my window boxes. Buying a large plant and breaking into chunks is often cheaper than buying flats.
If you’re wondering if you can plant herbs in containers, the answer is yes!
I buy flats of impatiens and plant them in containers and boxes early in the season. They are nearly indestructible, bloom all summer, and last until winter! This picture below was taken in late fall and you can see that my red impatiens are still in full bloom.
I pot larger petunia plants in early spring and delight in watching them fill and overflow their containers!
Okay, and now for some inspiration!
I am in love with this shoe pocket herb garden found via Ohdeedoh. I think my boys would have so much fun helping me plant this! Granted, the canvas wouldn’t look nearly as cute come end of summer, but I like the general idea here.
Rachel Lynn says
If you want to save a little more money and have some inside space, impatiens also start, practically on their own, from clippings and also overwinter inside.
You have a lot of beautiful outdoors space! I love that shoe pocket plant holder and that wall o plants too – looks like some good inspiration to be found there.
Jenn @ WestSacHoney says
Ah I love all your flowers! Question.. Impatients they say shade flowers.. But I want them in my front yard.. Do you have full sun on them?? I always see houses with full sun impatients and I want them, no I need them in my yard like yesterday.
Such a pretty yard!! I love that canvas hanging system, it would be a great way to maximize space!
Cindy (Applestone Cottage) says
It's great Beth! You've made it very charming indeed and small but oh so cute!
Stephanie Lynn says
Gorgeous! I am drooling over these! I get so giddy this time of year! Can I come over for a drink on your patio, please?
Sara @ Russet Street Reno says
Wow, your yard is a lovely postage stamp! Your outdoor spaces are enviable….I'm interested to know if you put your rooftop deck in, or if it was there already? We have a large flat rubber roof over our garage that we'd love to put decking on, but need some tips! I also think you have the flowers DOWN!
Your yard is SO cute and pretty! Maybe it's not as large as you'd like, but you maximized the space and added a ton of pretty plants! I enjoyed looking at everything!
Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality says
I don't see a brown thumb here! I love your postage stamp front yard, it's so cute. I think you've done a great job with your plants. I've been outside too getting my baskets planted & getting ready for summer, so I'll be sharing some gardening too. I always get enthused this time of year & then lose it by July's heat. 🙂
Summer's coming! I'm tired after some gardening today…
Fun seeing pics of your home…love the backyard…still need to weed the flower beds, plant some romaine & cauliflower & start basil seeds inside…
Hoping to go to Longwood Gardens Next Week! Yay!
I adore container gardens. I somehow manage to kill them all, but try every year! I planted some yesterday and the trailing plant is already dead. My thumb isn't brown. It is black! Yours are beautiful and I think I may go with sticking to one plant! Thanks for the inspiration and your check should be to you at any time!! I got my napkin rings yesterday and they are divine! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!
Sylvia (at) Lily's Pad and Petals says
You've got real pretty containers full of flowers. I made a Chair Planter this week (check it out on my blog).
i love everything about your house. we also have a postage stamp backyard but it is not cute at all like yours. i also have a brown thumb that's why my yard is bare!
Great gardening ideas here – I'll be back for more ideas!! Thanks for sharing them with us.
Amanda @ Serenity Now says
Beautiful!! I heartily agree about the petunias. I love wave petunias and they are so SO hard to kill. 😉 I'd like to try some more impatiens and herbs this summer.
Do you mind sharing where you got your rooftop dining set? That's exactly what I'm looking for!
Lovely Little Nest says
Oooh all of your flowers are beautiful! I've been wanting to start some container gardening because we live in an apartment and don't have a yard. Thanks for the inspiration!
P.S. Do you think herbs would fare well if planted in containers but left to grow inside? I'd like to keep mine in planters on our kitchen counter where they will get light from the living room windows. Which herbs grow best in limited lighting?
Brown thumb? What brown thumb? These pictures are gorgeous! How much do you LOVE your rooftop deck? It looks like so much fun 🙂 As a former Baltimorian (well, sort of), I've seen many rooftop decks …and yours is beautiful!
Oh, my goodness, Beth, it's amazing how far ahead of Massachusetts you are; I won't dare to plant petunias until nearer to Memorial Day. We are enjoying the Patriot's Day weekend despite the cool weather,though, and looking at your lovely planters gives me hope that warmer weather will arrive on Cape Cod in due time.
Thank you also for your excellent blog advice, which I put to immediate use!
Sending warm (hee!)thoughts to you…
Jude from Cape Cod at wwww.dolcecapecod.blogspot.com
I didn't have a chance nor the money to plant flowers last year. I'm hoping I can this year. You have such nice outdoor spaces.
Oh this post was filled with nature GOODNESS!!
Your little yard is perfect, and I'm jealous that my bigger yard doesn't even look half that good.
Beth@The Stories of A to Z says
I recovered the roof deck cushions and posted about it http://www.homestoriesatoz.com/2009/06/drop-cloth-patio-pillow-tutorial.html. The roof deck furniture was a hodge podge of end of summer clearance items–table from HD and chairs from Target. The front porch rockers came from overstock.com. The black/white paisley cushions from Gabriel Brothers and I made the porch pillows :).
There are some great ideas here! Are those green apples in a bird cage? LOVE that idea! Love the red on grey as well…so fresh and vibrant!!
AnNicole@Our Suburban Cottage says
LOVE all of your containers. I truly have a black thumb (well, not literally) so I admire someone who can have that many flowers and have them look that amazing.
I have to be honest though, I couldn't take my eyes off of your beautiful furniture, pillows and cushions!!! You need to spill the story. Did you make them yourself? I'm so impressed.
I have another inspiration photo for you: http://newlywoodwards.blogspot.com/2009/04/cans-to-containers.html
I love the hanging cans-as-containers, and am thinking about implementing something like this at my house. I still have a lot of work to do outside – but I'm making progress!
Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions says
You've got lots of outdoor spaces, Beth! I love the way you did your yard and a roof top deck ~ how very Manhattan-like! I love doing pots I find they are so much easier to take care of then my beds and since I have a large brick patio, it allows me to bring plants and color closer to the house. I haven't planted anything yet, I always wait until Mother's Day weekend to avoid any freeze.
I always try to break up larger pots of flowers, too. Get a little more bang for my buck. I'm also not afraid to get the ones that look root bound ~ I just break the root ball up with my little planting shovel or cut it with a knife so the roots are free and not tangled. They always do wonderfully.
I love using coleus ~ they come in many colors and really take off. One of my favorite plants to use in pots, and you can put other plants with them if you prefer something that flowers.
Blondie's Journal says
I have another month before I can play in the dirt, but you have given me lots of inspiration!! I like your yard. We have a very large yard considering we are in the city, (we have a double lot) and it can be a pain to take care of. Be careful what you wish for!!
LOVE all your flower choices. I am the same as you as far as planting much of the same in one pot. How can you make every plant happy at the same time??
Neat inspirational images. Love the shoe hanger thingie!! 🙂
1 Funky Woman says
Beth, you have a little paradise in your backyard! You have done an amazing job! I love your rooftop deck with the lanterns hanging from your umbrella. I love the idea of the herb garden in a hanging container too! I'm sure whatever else you come up with will be amazing!
Laura PARING DOWN says
Hi, Beth. I am getting ready to plant my first container veggies this week. Perfect post!
Terri and Bob says
I just did a post on my herb garden. Tis the season!
I think petunias and impatients are fab. Go with what works!
I am literally just now getting my hands into the dirt. It's hard to know what to do and I lack a lot of creativity, so right now I am just trying loads of things.
I love all of your flowers! We need to do some planting here too. We've lost a tree, an azalea, a few spireas, and 3 boxwoods in the last few years and they all need to be replaced.
Destination Seaborn says
I love your little yard and container gardens! For serious inspiration, check out provenwinners.com They have dozens and dozens of container recipes! Happy Gardening!