Containerized Trees and Shrubs

Use small trees and shrubs to add shade and structure to your container plantings.

| December 2017

Container Gardening Complete: Creative Projects for Growing Vegetables and Flowers in Small Spaces (Cool Springs Press, 2017), by Jessica Walliser provides detailed instructions to help you successfully grow a luscious container garden. Readers can grow a variety of plants in containers, even with limited space, by following the step-by-step instructions and helpful visuals. The following excerpt is from Chapter 2, “Designing and Planting your Container.”

Consider including small trees and shrubs in your plans if you want to add shade and structure to your container plantings. A containerized tree or shrub on a small balcony, patio, or deck adds height and visually expands the space while providing shade and cover.

The best trees and shrubs for container culture are those with a smaller stature. Unless you have an extremely large container, skip trying to grow trees that grow much bigger than 15 or 20 feet in height. And remember that when winter arrives, most containerized trees and shrubs need a little root insulation, especially if you live where winter temperatures drop below freezing on a regular basis. Another option is to remove the tree or shrub from its pot and plant it in the ground at the end of the growing season to ensure it survives the winter.

Because trees and shrubs are such large design elements, they are best used in a featured specimen design style.

The chart above features ten favorite selections that thrive in containers. Some bloom, while others are appreciated primarily for their foliage, but all add height and structure to your container garden.

More from Container Gardening Complete:
DIY Patio Water Garden with Bamboo

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