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Garden containers can provide opportunities for planting that achieve spectacular results in limited spaces. They may be the only means available to some gardeners. Containers come in many sizes, shapes, colors and styles. Designs range from the very formal to extremely rustic. Garden containers are usually made from terracotta, cement, wood, metal, fiberglass or plastic. Some are made from composite materials especially formulated to withstand severe winters.

The following should be considered when buying garden containers:

  • Select a color and design that suits the site. A rustic pot that looks terrific in a natural style garden may not look good in a very formal one.
  • Consider the size and weight of the container, especially if it will need to be moved or stored indoors in the winter.
  • Make sure the container has a hole in the bottom to insure adequate drainage.
  • Find out how to properly care for the container. Some containers will crack and split if left out in freezing weather. This is especially true of terracotta, wood and cement. Metal can rust over time.

Remember that many containers will need less watering in hot, dry weather and last longer if plants are actually planted in a slightly smaller plastic container that can be dropped into them. Garden containers can be changed every season.

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