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The Patio: Versatile container gardening ideas

California is blessed with a unique lifestyle because we are able to spend more time outdoors than most parts of the country -- even in areas that seem to have extremes in climate like the desert or the mountains. No matter where we live, the use of the patio has added dimension to our lives. The patio provides the perfect area to show off beautiful blooming containers. Patios add that extra touch allowing us to share the beauty of nature in pots when planting in the soil isn't feasible.
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The throbbing vibrant color of blood! Compact landscaping roses can also be grown in small spaces and even on highrise patios in containers. Red Flower Carpet by Tesselaar

The same holds true for those who live in condominiums or apartments. If your "garden" is a cemented balcony or a small enclosed patio, containers can help create an outdoor living area for these urban homes, too. Plants can be used to create portable hedges, screens for privacy or to haide fences and railings.

For more articles about URBAN NATURE

Urban Agriculture for Outdoor Adventure
Earth's Most Successful Life Form
Kudzu Grows a Foot per Day
Meow How? Should I keep my cat indoors?
Habitat on Your Balcony and Garden Patio
Keeping ants in nature where they belong
They establish a natural look and a colorful splash if you choose to use blooming plants. Creating a mood for your outdoor living areas is also possible with containers. For example, many of the tropical plants that are found in shade gardens or inside the home make excellent plantings for containers and can grace a patio deck.

Hedge Plants

If a hedge is what is needed, any of the boxwoods or some myrtles do well. Dwarf Escallonia makes a colorful hedge with small pink flowers, which cover it in late spring and summer. Another colorful plant would be one of the India Hawthornes, raphiolepis, or maybe one of the Ericas (heather), for a lighter look.

landscape roses, rose garden, garden
These lovely single rose blossoms remind me of pink dogwood -- but the low-growth of landscape roses offers eyelevel, longlasting flora. And companion tubular blossoms are great for attracting hummingbirds. Flower Carpet-Coral by Tesselaar

Wall Cover Plants

You can even use containerized plants, such as Star Jasmine, to cover a wall. Not only will this plant provide green beauty year round but fragrant flowers as well. There are other viens that will do nicely -- such as climbing roses. Nursery professionals can help you select the right plant for the exposure you have.

Container Plants

For attractive plants to fill a contaner, use camellias, azaleas, kaffir lilies, ferns and even dwarf fruit trees, particularly citrus.

Flowering Plants

Color bowls filled to the brim with seasonal color always provide a special splash of color. The use of your imagination in creating a garden wonderland iin small space gardening will make your patio or deck as unique and personal as you care to create.