Container-grown plants can be planted year-round and we are currently in the middle of the prime spring planting season. You can plant color annuals, perennials, warm season vegetables, shrubs, trees, Bermuda grass lawns, container gardens now and enjoy a high success rate with your plantings.
In another month we will have to focus more of our attention on watering and battling the insects, but now we can make a huge impact by planting new plant materials.
We plant annuals and vegetables to enjoy now as we feed our stomachs and our souls. We plant perennials, shrubs and trees to enjoy now but really as an investment in the future to enjoy in the years and decades ahead as they grow more impressive with time.
Trees make such a lasting and growing impact that they are celebrated in poems, stories and song as a gift to our children and future generations. Some people worry the planting season is over after Mother’s Day, others say Memorial Day ends the planting season but that is just not true when planting container-grown plant material.
Oklahomans planting now have not even lost that much time to early planters this year as we have had many cool nights in the mid 40s just over a week ago. Do not forget to water your new plantings thoroughly after planting and regularly as needed. Remember the hotter, drier and windier it gets the more water your new plantings will require.
If you are having guests and want to add extra color to your patio, porch, balcony, on the driveway or at other fun spots around your yard, plant container gardens. Choose your containers, fill with high-quality, well-drained soil mix and use your imagination to select a pretty plant or combination of plants to liven up your yard.
Large containers that hold more soil are easier to maintain as they will dry out less often. The choices in large containers continue to improve every year as more people get in on the container gardening experience. Most large-container gardens will feature a tall plant in the center of the container surrounded by several shorter plants or cascading plants.
You can make year-round planters with a juniper, cedar or broadleaf shrub as the focal plant or you can use all annuals to maximize your color between now and the first freeze in November. Many folks are now doing container gardens of vegetables only or veggies in combination with color plants.
It is not only fun to harvest your own peppers, tomatoes, eggplant, strawberries and herbs from your very own container garden on the balcony of your apartment or outside the patio door, but it is especially healthy and satisfying to eat fresh, fully ripened produce you grew yourself.
Many of the early spring plantings have now rooted in well and are producing a burst of spring growth. Take time to enjoy the many natural wonders and the beauty in your yard as you do more plantings.
Rodd Moesel serves on the Oklahoma State University Agriculture Dean’s Advisory Committee. He is a former president of the Oklahoma Greenhouse Growers Association. Email garden and landscape questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.