How do I prepare tall outdoor planters to be used on a porch?

I'd like them to be light enough to move them. I' d like them to have enough dirt in them so that roots will be happy. I'd like them to be bug free and colorful. Thank you!

  7 answers
  • Amanda Amanda on Jul 10, 2017
    I have used plastic water bottles to fill the bottom of the planters. You can also use packing peanuts.
  • Elizabeth Dion Elizabeth Dion on Jul 10, 2017
    You can use empty water bottles to fill space. My personal preference is the popcorn packing peanuts which lighten the weight of the pot and provide good drainage for the soil. A win-win!
  • Put a decent sized rock in the bottom for stability. Then fill halfway with empty water bottles, packing peanuts, etc., to take up space yet not add weight. Then your potting medium and then your plant(s). Bug free will never happen, it is just part of nature, just inspect your plants periodically for pests.
  • Charlee Hunter Charlee Hunter on Jul 10, 2017
    All good suggestions, also they now make some very nice composite , light weight planters that make them easier to move. Mums are very hardy and bug resistant and should be in season soon : )
  • Sarah Barganier Sarah Barganier on Jul 10, 2017
    Put them on wheels. You can buy bottoms with wheels like you see under commercial trash cans.
  • Gayle Tucker Gayle Tucker on Jul 10, 2017
    Fill the first third of your planter with vermiculite. Then use a mixture of potting soil and vermiculite for your growing medium. Being colorful is a matter of the plants you choose. You can rarely go wrong with geraniums and purple salvia/Russian sage. The sage also comes in white. These will be real eye catchers. Neither geraniums nor sage attract many bugs due to their herbal odor. Also trailing verbena can be very colorful and will give yo less verticality in your planter.
  • Pat Pat on Jul 10, 2017
    Depending on the size of your planters, I have put different things in the bottom to make it lighter.....empty pop cans, syrophome cups, anything light and bulky. That way the pot takes less dirt but will still have room for the roots of the plant to survive. I like Sarah's idea.....and I have several of the planter platforms that have wheels. Also I have found that if the plant is a little dryer, it is more light weight then it is when you have just watered it, and so is easier to move. As for bugs....depends on what kind of flowers you plant. I have good luck with systemic bug killer.....sprinkle it on the soil you should have no bugs..