10 best tips for perfect container gardening

Planter boxes are great for plants that need proper elevation and draining. It also gives you the opportunity to group plants together that enjoy the same type of soil or will compliment each other as they grow. Plus, this is a great option if you just don't have a lot of space to garden because you can build up!
While you might assume planter box planting is pretty much the same as planting in soil, there are some major differences that can make or break your garden. Here are some important tips to keep in mind before you start and to help you maintain the healthiest garden possible.
1. The bigger the better
Your plants need room to grow. So, as the Old Farmers Almanac explains, the bigger the better! Bigger planter boxes mean your plants won't be cramped and can grow much bigger. It's well worth the investment.
2. Get creative
Use an old tub, cut a big tin drum in half, boxes, troughs -- anything you can get your hands on. They don't have to be just wooden boxes!
3. Add gravel
Make sure you add about 1 inch of coarse gravel or rocks in the bottom of your containers to help with drainage.
4. Fertilize often
You need to keep your soil nice and fertilized so your plants can grow to their full potential. Make sure you add liquid fertilizer at least twice a month to keep everything on track.
5. Water, water, water!
Your container garden is awesome because it drains well. But, Better Homes and Gardens says this means you need to stay on top of your plant's hydration. You need to water your plants every time your soil feels dry -- sometimes twice a day. For this reason, it might be a good idea to dig an irrigation system or get a sprinkler timer.
6. Clean out often
Stay on top of your plant's cycles. Be sure to clip the old heads and stems off of your plants after they have peaked to encourage new growth. This is called "deadheading" and it's also going to make your container garden look a whole lot fresher.
7. Find the right sunny spot
You can't just put all your plants in the same container garden because some plants need more light than others. Be sure to create a few different planter boxes so you can group your plants together -- like the ones who need lots of light and the ones who thrive in some shade.
8. Plant partner plants
Some plants just don't get along. One plant might need acidic soil, another might attract a type of fungus that kills the one next to it. Be sure to do research on the proper plants to plant next to one another to ensure the health of your garden.
9. Never use soil from your own garden
This might sound crazy, but you need to use a different soil because you essentially have created a new environment. The Old Farmers Almanac explains that soil from the garden is just too heavy, can become easily waterlogged and can even bring unwanted bugs and diseases with it. Instead, opt for a soilless mix that is good for draining.
10. Use this trick to keep weeds away
Use different types of plants to layer your garden. For example, plant root crops, low-growers, and tall climbers together in the same container (make sure they get along, first!). The climbing plants will grow up a trellis and the small plants will spread across the base and the root plants will dig deep. In doing so, the weeds really won't have anywhere to go! And hopefully, it eliminates them altogether.
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