Best Containers for Small Gardens

 Small, but Perfectly Formed

If your garden is small, then you need to choose planters for small gardens. 

But wait, just how small IS a small garden? I define a small garden to be somewhere around the size of an apartment balcony up to around 20-25 ft square. My own garden, a fenced concrete yard, falls somewhere in the middle of that range.

It often ends up being ignored as people watch television programs where “small” simply means “under 100ft”, and feel there's “nothing they can do” with their own outdoor space.

However, even something as small as an apartment balcony can become an attractive vibrant garden with a little bit of thought. 

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Here's a few recommended purchases for your “attractive, bijou, al fresco area”.

Best Containers for Small Gardens

#5: Five Tier Stackable Planter

Holding up to 20 plants, these tiered planters are available in either hunter green or gray stone. They are suitable for outdoor use as well as windowsill planting.

 
 

A good idea is to buy a couple of these planters and use one as an herb and soft fruit garden, and the other as a flower garden. Placed on either end of a balcony, you're then helping yourself grow edible herbs and fruits AND helping nature by providing a floral bounty of nectar for bees and butterflies.

They are ideal for plants such as strawberries and herbs – both of which can thrive on a sunny windowsill. However, it is worth noting that you will need to turn the planter around every other day so that the other side gets sun too.

Strawberries growing in windowsill. Photo Credit: Julia66 of Gardeners World

Strawberries growing in windowsill. Photo Credit: Julia66 of Gardeners World

If you are too lazy to turn pots daily like me, I'd recommend planting half with plants which need full sun and the other half with plants that do well with partial sun or shade only. The side facing the windowsill will of course get more sun than the other side that is facing inwards. 

These plants need watering daily

Just a note that these kind of plants also need watering daily, and these planters are not self-watering.

This stackable planter would be the perfect, space-saving way for those into herbology/natural remedies to grow a full culinary and medicinal herb garden on a single windowsill.

Pros:

  • Space-saving
  • Ideal for herbs and soft fruits

Cons:

  • Will need watering daily, and turning every other day, if all plants require full sun.
  • If being used outside, will need to be weighted down.

Value for Money?

Yes, definitely. Owing to their stackable feature and practical design, they will pay you back after a few months of use especially if you use them to plant herbs and small fruit-bearing plants.

#4: The 36 Pocket Vertical Planter

As well as providing plenty of planting pockets for your herbs and small flowers, this vertical planter adds its own bright color coming in a striking yet subdued lime green. This planter is also available in black in case you want something more low-key.

 
 

Suitable for hanging from a balcony rail, over a fence, or screwing to an external wall, these vertical planters are the space saving option for small gardeners everywhere.

Pros:

  • Space saving
  • Ideal for balcony gardens

 Cons:

  • Planted pockets will need watering daily

Value for Money?

If you're looking to primarily grow herbs and are prepared for daily watering, this is a good space saving option that can work from something as small as a balcony.

#3: The 6 Piece Ceramic Mini Owl

 
 

Perfect for growing chives, mint, and succulents, these planters are cute as well as functional. Whether you use them to make a garden of your windowsill, or as part of a feature planting area in a slightly larger outdoor space, they'll look equally good

In larger small gardens, these could be hidden around a wider planting scheme and planted with small bright flowers to provide an unexpected splash of color.

Pros:

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  • Perfect size for windowsill succulent garden
  • A cute addition to a fairy garden

Cons:

  • Other than their small size, nothing, really

Value for Money?

These attractive, functional planters allow those of us with just a windowsill to create attractive succulent gardens, while those of us with more space can add them, planted or left bare, to larger schemes. They also make a great, affordable gift.

#2: Multi Color Metal Hanging Plant Pots

These bright stainless steel plant pots are large enough for flowers, herbs, or soft fruit. They come as a set of five pots each a different color, so you can grow a little of everything.

 
 

These pots can be easily hung over a wall, fence, or balcony rail. In slightly larger gardens, they can be hung across a bamboo or willow garden screen as an effective way to separate different areas of the garden.

These containers don't come with drain holes so they will need to be lined with a layer of bark or gravel prior to planting or have drain holes drilled.

Pros:

  • Versatile – can be hung almost anywhere
  • Bright and attractive
  • Large enough for soft fruit and flower planting

Cons:

  • Don't come with drain holes

Value for Money?

An easy and affordable way to plant up and brighten up a small garden.

#1: Design Your Own Teacup Planters, set of 6

For the artistically minded, these planters offer opportunity for both planting of herbs and flowers and creative expression.

 
 

These DIY planters can be painted with acrylic paint which dries very quickly. Another easy option is colored permanent markers which will work just as well.

If you are using these outside, make sure you seal the paint with a clear varnish once dry so that your hard work doesn't vanish with the first rain! Boat varnish is best for this. 

An ideal way to get younger children excited about growing their own plants

Drainage holes are included so the teacups are ready to use as soon as you've painted them. This set of planters would be an ideal way to get younger children excited about growing their own plants as they can decorate their own cup and select the plants for it.  

In a small hardscaped space, these six planters could each be painted and planted differently to add color and character to the space.

Pros:

  • Suitable for all sizes of small garden, including balconies
  • Large enough for flower, herb, and potential soft fruit planting
  • Great for children
  • With drainage holes!

Cons:

  • None that we could see!

Value for Money?

Definitely worth buying if your creativity extends beyond the garden! If you've recently moved to your small garden with accommodation attached, why not buy a set of these and invite friends over to decorate them as part of a garden warming party? (If you don't have friends, this could be a good way to get to know the neighbors!)