How To Plant Tall Planters [ Full Guide ]

Tall planters can add a touch of beauty and elegance to any outdoor or indoor space. Whether you want to create a green wall on your balcony, add some privacy to your patio, or simply introduce some height variation to your garden, tall planters are an excellent choice. However, planting tall planters requires careful consideration of various factors such as location, plant selection, and planter preparation. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the detailed steps and considerations for planting tall planters successfully.

Quick Answer: How To Plant Tall Planters

Planting tall planters involves the following steps:

  1. Select the right location – Consider factors such as sunlight, wind exposure, and accessibility.
  2. Choose appropriate plants – Select plants based on the planter’s location, size, and the desired aesthetic.
  3. Prepare the tall planter – Ensure proper drainage, add soil, and incorporate a support system if necessary.
  4. Plant the chosen greenery – Gently place the plants in the planter, ensuring proper spacing and depth.
  5. Water and maintain – Regularly water the plants and provide necessary care and maintenance.

Now, let’s delve into the detailed insights for each step.

Benefits Of Tall Planters

Tall planters offer several advantages that make them a popular choice for gardeners and homeowners:

  1. Vertical Visual Impact: Tall planters enhance visual interest and create a sense of height, making them an excellent choice for small spaces or areas with limited ground space.

  2. Space-Efficiency: They allow you to grow a variety of plants in a limited area, making them suitable for balconies, patios, or entranceways.

  3. Privacy and Screening: Tall planters can serve as natural dividers, providing privacy and screening undesirable views.

  4. Protection from Pests: Elevating plants can offer some protection against pests and rodents, especially for edible gardens.

Choosing The Right Location

The success of your tall planters largely depends on choosing the right location. Consider the following factors when selecting the placement for your tall planters:

  1. Sunlight: Ensure the location receives the appropriate amount of sunlight based on the plant species you intend to grow. Some plants require full sun, while others thrive in partial shade.

  2. Wind Exposure: Protect your plants from strong winds, especially if they are delicate or prone to toppling over. Consider placing the planters in a sheltered area if wind exposure is a concern.

  3. Accessibility: Choose a location that allows easy access for planting, watering, and maintenance. If the planter is too high, ensure there is a safe and convenient way to reach it.

  4. Aesthetics: Consider the overall aesthetics of the space. Determine how the tall planters will complement the surrounding environment and whether they will obstruct any views.

Selecting The Appropriate Plants

Choosing the right plants for your tall planters is crucial for their successful growth and visual appeal. Consider the following factors when selecting plants:

  1. Size and Growth Habit: Ensure the plants you choose are suitable for tall planters and will not outgrow or overpower the space. Look for compact or upright varieties that will thrive in the confined space of a tall planter.

  2. Climate and Hardiness: Select plants that are well-suited for your climate and growing zone. Consider factors such as temperature, humidity, and seasonal changes to ensure the plants will thrive year-round.

  3. Light and Water Requirements: Match the plants’ light and water needs to the location of the tall planters. Some plants may require more sunlight, while others prefer shadier spots. Similarly, consider the amount of water the chosen plants need.

  4. Aesthetic Appeal: Choose plants that complement the overall design and style of your outdoor or indoor space. Consider factors like color, texture, and seasonal interest to create a visually appealing arrangement.

  5. Practical Considerations: If you are planning to grow edible plants, ensure they are safe for consumption and consider any height restrictions for the produce.

Preparing The Tall Planter

Properly preparing the tall planter is vital for the health and growth of the plants. Follow these steps to ensure your tall planter is ready for planting:

  1. Drainage: Ensure the planter has adequate drainage holes to prevent waterlogging, particularly if it is placed outdoors. If the planter does not have drainage holes, consider adding a layer of gravel at the bottom to improve drainage.

  2. Soil: Use a high-quality, well-draining potting mix suitable for the types of plants you will be growing. Ensure the planter is adequately filled with soil but leave enough space to accommodate the plant roots.

  3. Support Structures: If your chosen plants are tall or have climbing habits, consider incorporating support structures such as trellises or stakes to provide stability and encourage upward growth.

  4. Watering System: Consider the watering needs of the plants and whether an irrigation system or self-watering planter inserts would be beneficial for maintaining adequate moisture levels.

  5. Fertilization: Depending on the specific requirements of your chosen plants, consider incorporating slow-release fertilizers or organic matter into the soil to provide essential nutrients.

Planting The Chosen Greenery

Once the tall planter is prepared, it’s time to start planting. Follow these steps for successful planting:

  1. Plant Positioning: Arrange the plants within the planter according to their growth habits, ensuring taller plants are positioned towards the back and shorter ones towards the front for optimal visibility.

  2. Plant Spacing: Give each plant sufficient space to grow by following the spacing recommendations for the particular species. Crowding the plants can lead to competition for resources and hinder their growth.

  3. Plant Depth: Ensure you plant the greenery at the appropriate depth, following the guidelines for each individual species. Planting too deep or too shallow can hinder root development and affect plant health.

  4. Gently Remove Plants from Pots: Carefully remove the plants from their nursery pots, gently loosen the roots if they are pot-bound, and place them in the prepared soil. Be careful not to damage the roots during this process.

  5. Watering: After planting, thoroughly water the plants to help settle the soil and ensure the roots make good contact.

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Watering And Maintenance

Proper watering and maintenance are essential for the health and longevity of the plants in your tall planters. Follow these guidelines for watering and general care:

  1. Watering Schedule: Establish a regular watering schedule based on the specific needs of the plants, taking into account factors such as weather conditions and seasonal changes. Monitor the moisture levels in the soil to avoid overwatering or underwatering.

  2. Mulching: Consider applying a layer of mulch to help retain moisture, regulate soil temperature, and prevent weed growth. Organic mulches also contribute to soil health as they decompose.

  3. Pruning and Deadheading: Regularly prune and deadhead the plants to promote healthy growth and maintain their aesthetic appeal.

  4. Fertilizing: Depending on the requirements of the plants, consider incorporating a regular fertilization schedule to ensure they receive essential nutrients for vigorous growth and blooming.

  5. Pest and Disease Control: Monitor the plants for pests and diseases, and take appropriate measures to prevent and address any issues that may arise.

  6. Seasonal Maintenance: Consider the seasonal needs of the plants, such as winter protection for cold-sensitive species or repotting if the plants outgrow the planter.

Planting tall planters can be a rewarding and visually striking addition to your outdoor or indoor space. By choosing the right location, selecting appropriate plants, and properly preparing and maintaining the tall planters, you can create a thriving and visually appealing display. Consider the specific needs of the plants and the environmental conditions to ensure their success. With proper care and attention, tall planters can enhance the beauty of your surroundings and provide a lush and vibrant vertical garden.

Adding Proper Drainage

Tall planters can add vertical interest and beauty to any garden or outdoor space. Moreover, they are an excellent way to add privacy, create a focal point, or enhance the aesthetics of a space. However, planting tall planters requires a different approach compared to planting in-ground or regular containers.

Proper drainage is crucial for the health and longevity of plants in tall planters. Without adequate drainage, excess water can accumulate in the planter, leading to root rot and other diseases. Here are a few steps to ensure proper drainage in your tall planters:

  1. Choose a Planter with Drainage Holes: When selecting tall planters, opt for ones that come with drainage holes at the bottom. These holes allow excess water to flow out of the planter, preventing waterlogging.

  2. Add Drainage Material: Before adding soil to the planter, you should create a layer of drainage material at the bottom. This material can consist of rocks, gravel, or broken pottery pieces. The layer should be around one to two inches thick, sufficient to allow water to escape freely from the drainage holes.

By following these steps, you can ensure that water efficiently drains from the planter, preventing waterlogged soil and root rot.

Planting Technique For Tall Planters

The planting technique used for tall planters differs slightly from regular planting methods. When planting in a tall planter, it is crucial to provide enough stability and support for the plants. Here’s a step-by-step guide to planting tall planters effectively:

  1. Select the Right Potting Mix: Choosing the right potting mix is essential for the health of your plants. Opt for a lightweight potting mix that offers good drainage and aeration. Avoid using soil from your garden, as it may be too dense and lack the necessary nutrients for potted plants.

  2. Layering the Planter: Start by adding a few inches of potting mix at the bottom of the tall planter. This initial layer will act as a foundation for the plants and provide a stable base.

  3. Positioning the Plants: Before planting your tall planter, decide on the arrangement and positioning of the plants. Consider the height, spread, and growth habits of the plants to ensure they have enough space to grow and thrive. Place taller plants towards the center or back of the planter and shorter plants towards the edges or front.

  4. Planting the Plants: Dig small holes in the potting mix to accommodate each plant. Gently remove the plants from their nursery containers, being careful not to damage the roots. Place the plants in the prepared holes, ensuring that the root ball is level with or slightly above the rim of the planter. Fill the gaps around the plants with potting mix, gently pressing it down to secure the plants in place.

  5. Watering: After planting, water the tall planter thoroughly, ensuring that the soil is evenly moist. This initial watering will help settle the plants and eliminate any air pockets in the soil.

By following this planting technique, you will provide a stable and supportive environment for your plants to grow and thrive in tall planters.

Maintaining Adequate Water And Fertilizer Levels

Watering and fertilizing tall planters correctly is crucial for the health and vigor of the plants. Here are some essential tips to maintain adequate water and fertilizer levels in tall planters:

  1. Watering Routine: Tall planters tend to dry out more quickly compared to in-ground beds or regular containers due to increased exposure to wind and sun. Therefore, it is crucial to establish a regular watering routine based on the specific needs of the plants. Monitor the moisture levels of the soil regularly and water whenever the top inch of soil feels dry. Water deeply, ensuring that the moisture reaches the root zone.

  2. Watering Technique: When watering tall planters, it is important to water slowly and evenly to allow the water to penetrate deeply into the planter. Using a watering can with a narrow spout or a gentle drip irrigation system can help with precise watering. Avoid overwatering, as it can lead to waterlogging and root rot.

  3. Fertilizer Application: Tall planters often require more frequent fertilization compared to in-ground plants due to the limited nutrient availability in the confined space. Use a slow-release granular fertilizer or a water-soluble fertilizer to provide the necessary nutrients. Follow the instructions on the fertilizer package for the correct application rate. Apply the fertilizer evenly to the potting mix, taking care not to exceed the recommended dosage to prevent fertilizer burn.

  4. Nutrient Monitoring: Regularly monitor the plants for any signs of nutrient deficiencies, such as yellowing leaves or stunted growth. These indicators may suggest the need for additional fertilization. Adjust your fertilization schedule accordingly to maintain optimal nutrient levels.

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By maintaining adequate water and fertilizer levels, you will provide the necessary nutrients and hydration for your plants to thrive and flourish in tall planters.

Pruning And Shaping The Plants

Pruning and shaping the plants in tall planters are essential for maintaining their shape, improving airflow, and encouraging healthy growth. Here’s a guide on pruning and shaping tall plants in planters:

  1. Know the Pruning Needs: Different plants have different pruning requirements. Research the specific pruning needs of your plants beforehand to ensure you prune them correctly. Pay attention to the time of year and the technique required for each plant.

  2. Deadhead Flowers: Regularly remove wilted or spent flowers from your plants. This process, known as deadheading, allows the plant to focus its energy on producing new growth rather than seed production. Use sharp and clean pruning shears to make clean cuts just above a leaf node or bud.

  3. Remove Diseased or Damaged Growth: Inspect your plants regularly for any signs of disease or pest infestation. Promptly remove any infected or damaged branches or leaves to prevent the spread of disease. Dispose of the pruned material properly to avoid further contamination.

  4. Promote Plant Shape: To maintain an attractive shape, prune the plants as necessary. Trim back any wayward branches or excessive growth to maintain the desired shape and size. Use pruning shears or hedge clippers, depending on the thickness of the branches, to make clean cuts.

  5. Training Vining Plants: If you have vining plants in your tall planters, you may need to provide support and train them to climb or trail in a specific direction. Insert stakes, trellises, or other support structures into the planter to guide the growth of the vines. Regularly redirect and secure the vines to the desired path.

By regularly pruning and shaping your plants, you will promote healthy growth and maintain their aesthetic appeal in tall planters.

Planting tall planters requires careful consideration and specific techniques to ensure the health and longevity of the plants. By adding proper drainage, using the right planting technique, maintaining water and fertilizer levels, and regularly pruning and shaping the plants, you can create a stunning display of greenery and flowers in your tall planters. Remember to choose the right plants for your specific climate and location and adapt your care routine accordingly. With proper care and attention, you can enjoy the beauty and vertical impact of tall planters in your garden or outdoor space for years to come.

Protecting The Plants From Pests And Diseases

Tall planters can add a beautiful touch of greenery to any space, whether it be a spacious backyard, a small balcony, or even the entrance of your home. They not only provide a striking visual appeal but also allow you to maximize planting space while taking advantage of vertical height.

Planting tall planters requires some careful consideration and proper techniques to ensure the health and growth of your plants.

Like any other container gardens, tall planters are susceptible to pests and diseases. It’s important to take preventive measures to protect your plants and ensure their longevity. Here are some tips to help you in this regard:

  1. Choose healthy plants: Begin by selecting disease-resistant plants and healthy specimens. Inspect the plants thoroughly for any signs of pests, diseases, or abnormalities before purchasing.

  2. Use pest-resistant soil: Start with a high-quality potting mix that is well-draining and specially formulated to deter pests and diseases. Avoid using soil from your garden, as it may contain pests or diseases that can easily be transferred to your planters.

  3. Regularly inspect your plants: Keep a close eye on your plants for any signs of pests or diseases. Look for wilting leaves, yellowing foliage, visible pests, or any abnormal growth patterns. Early detection and prompt action can help prevent the spread of pests and diseases.

  4. Practice good sanitation: Cleanliness is key to preventing the buildup of pests and diseases. Remove any fallen leaves, dead plant material, or debris from the planters. This will help eliminate hiding places for pests and reduce the risk of diseases.

  5. Implement natural pest control: If pests become an issue, consider using natural remedies such as neem oil or insecticidal soaps. These are safe for the environment, non-toxic to humans and pets, and can effectively control pests like aphids, spider mites, and whiteflies.

  6. Monitor watering: Overwatering can create an ideal environment for fungal diseases. Avoid waterlogging the planters by ensuring proper drainage and watering your plants according to their specific needs.

Winterizing Tall Planters

Winter can be harsh on plants, especially those in containers. Proper winterizing techniques are necessary to protect your tall planters and ensure the survival and growth of your plants. Here are some steps to follow:

  1. Relocate the planters: If possible, consider moving your tall planters to a sheltered location or indoors during the winter months. This can be a covered porch, a garage, or any place that provides protection from freezing temperatures, strong winds, and heavy snowfall.

  2. Wrap the planters: For planters that cannot be moved, insulate them by wrapping them with burlap or bubble wrap. This will help retain heat and prevent cold winds from damaging the plants.

  3. Add insulation: Surround the planters with mulch or straw to provide additional insulation. This layer of insulation will help regulate the temperature and protect the roots from extreme cold.

  4. Water sparingly: Reduce the frequency of watering during winter. Overwatering can lead to root rot in cold temperatures. Instead, check the moisture levels in the soil and water only when necessary.

  5. Prune and protect: As winter approaches, trim any dead or damaged branches from your plants. This will allow them to focus their energy on healthy growth and minimize the risk of diseases. Additionally, apply a layer of mulch around the base of the plant to protect the roots from freezing.

  6. Monitor the weather: Keep an eye on the weather forecast, especially when freezing temperatures are expected. Be prepared to take additional measures, like covering the planters with blankets or providing extra heating, if needed.

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Creative Ideas For Tall Planter Arrangements

Planting tall planters gives you the opportunity to create stunning and eye-catching arrangements. Here are some creative ideas to inspire you:

  1. Vertical Gardens: Arrange a mix of trailing and upright plants to create a vertical garden. Combine different textures and colors to add visual interest. Consider using climbers like ivy or sweet potato vine to cascade down the sides of the planter.

  2. Color-coordinated Planters: Choose a color scheme and arrange plants that complement each other. For example, use a combination of purple fountain grass, lavender, and white petunias for a soothing and elegant look.

  3. Dramatic Focal Points: Select a tall, show-stopping plant as the centerpiece of your planter, such as a palm tree or a tall ornamental grass. Surround it with shorter plants that complement its color and texture.

  4. Herb and Vegetable Gardens: Utilize tall planters to create functional herb or vegetable gardens. Plant a variety of herbs or vegetables that thrive in containers, such as tomatoes, basil, cilantro, and parsley.

  5. Seasonal Displays: Change up your planters based on the season. Use bright and vibrant flowers in spring and summer, ornamental grasses for autumn, and evergreen plants for winter. Add seasonal accents like fall foliage or holiday decorations to enhance the theme.

  6. Mixed Planters: Combine different types of plants with varying heights, textures, and colors to create a visually dynamic arrangement. Pair smaller flowers with taller ornamental grasses or include cascading vines for added drama.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

Despite your best efforts, you may encounter some common problems while planting and maintaining tall planters. Here are a few issues and their potential solutions:

  1. Rootbound Plants: If your plants become rootbound and start to show signs of stunted growth or wilting, it’s time to repot them. Gently remove the rootball from the planter, loosen the roots, and transplant them into a larger container with fresh potting soil.

  2. Yellowing Leaves: Yellowing leaves can be a sign of overwatering, nutrient deficiencies, or lack of sunlight. Ensure your planters have proper drainage, provide adequate sunlight, and consider using a balanced fertilizer to address nutrient deficiencies.

  3. Pest Infestation: If pests become a persistent problem, consider introducing beneficial insects like ladybugs or lacewings to naturally control the population. Alternatively, you can use organic insecticides as mentioned earlier.

  4. Diseases: Fungal diseases like powdery mildew or root rot can be a challenge. Avoid overhead watering, ensure good airflow around the plants, and prune any infected or diseased parts. Consider using fungicides if the problem persists.

  5. Uneven Growth: Uneven growth can occur when plants compete for light or nutrients. Regularly rotate your planters to ensure all sides receive equal sunlight. Additionally, provide adequate spacing between plants to prevent overcrowding.

  6. Nutrient Deficiencies: If your plants show signs of nutrient deficiencies, such as pale leaves or poor growth, consider using a balanced fertilizer or organic amendments to correct the issue. Follow the instructions on the product label for the appropriate dosage.


Planting tall planters requires careful planning and maintenance. By following the tips and techniques mentioned in this article, you can create stunning arrangements, protect your plants from pests and diseases, winterize them effectively, and troubleshoot common issues. With a little patience and effort, your tall planters will thrive and bring an abundance of beauty to your space. Enjoy the process and the rewards of a flourishing garden.


How Deep Should I Plant Tall Planters?

For most plants, the depth of the planter should be at least one-third of the plant’s height. However, for small shrubs or trees, the planter depth should be at least half the height of the plant.

What Type Of Soil Is Best For Tall Planters?

It is recommended to use a well-draining potting mix for tall planters. Look for a mix specifically designed for container gardening, which will provide adequate nutrients and proper drainage for the plants.

Do I Need To Add Drainage Holes To My Tall Planter?

Yes, drainage holes are crucial for tall planters. They allow excess water to drain out, preventing waterlogged soil and root rot. If your planter does not have drainage holes, you can create them by drilling a few holes in the bottom.

How Often Should I Water Tall Planters?

The frequency of watering will depend on the type of plant, the size of the planter, and the climate. Generally, tall planters will require more frequent watering than ground plants since the soil in containers tends to dry out faster. Check the soil moisture regularly and water when the top inch of soil feels dry.

Can I Place Tall Planters In Direct Sunlight?

It depends on the plant. Some plants thrive in full sun, while others prefer partial or full shade. Before placing your tall planters in direct sunlight, research the specific needs of your plants to ensure they receive the right amount of light. Additionally, make sure to monitor the soil moisture and provide extra water if the plant is in a sunny and dry location.