Shop all plants for patio containers
Browse our range of the best plants for growing in containers, perfect for adding a flush of colour, naturalising a patio or decked area, or just generally beautifying your outdoor space. Planters, troughs and tubs are perfect for brightening up walls, fences and patios, helping to utilise all the available space in your garden. The style can be guided by the context of your home – terracotta pots work well against red brick buildings, while galvanised metal containers can help maintain a modern, urban feel. Containers are normally quicker and easier to plant up than plants going into the ground, allowing you to experiment with different combinations and designs with relative ease. Growing plants in smaller containers that are manageable to lift also allows container displays to be given pride of place when in full bloom, then moved out of the limelight once the display has finished. Most plants can be grown in a container but some are better suited than others.
Japanese maples work well in oriental-style gardens with a graceful, dome-shaped habit and beautiful palm-shaped or feathery leaves. Topiary cones, balls, pyramids or lollipop standards are effective in containers in gardens with a more formal style, perhaps in pairs either side of a doorway to frame the entrance. Large mixed planters or troughs are perfect for giving an informal appearance in cottage-style gardens while grasses like cordyline and phormium bring architectural flair to your outdoor space with spectacular, sword-shaped leaves. Perennials are popular choices to bring fabulous flowers to your container, best combined with some evergreen shrubs if intended as a permanent display. If 'growing your own' appeals, a wide range of fruit trees and fruit bushes will also thrive in containers. Add water retaining gel before planting and top-dress with gravel or decorative stone to help the compost stay moist in warm weather and keep the roots cool.