We are always looking for unique ways to add interest to our garden. One of our favorite ways to increase harvest and add a touch of whimsy to the garden is by sneaking in pepper plants or other showy vegetables where it’s least expected. A Sweet and Spicy Porch Pot is a great way to increase your yield in smaller spaces and gives you additional flexibility to adjust your plantings throughout the growing season. Remember, gardening means experimenting. We like to keep some extra pots around for when creativity strikes, for extra plantings, or for occasions where we need to rearrange our space.
Long-Fibered Sphagnum Moss in Container Gardens
Long-Fibered Sphagnum Moss is a wonderful soil additive for your container gardens, especially if you are taking the peat-free pledge. It holds 20 times its weight in water, ensuring your plant’s roots have a readily available water source when needed. We are planting this porch pot after we typically have our plants already established. Planting so late in the season also risks our pot drying out early in the mid-summer sun. We are going to help our planting by layering Mosser Lee Long Fibered Sphagnum Moss to help our pot retain the optimum amount of moisture.
So many times, we make beautiful containers, and by mid-summer, it’s a struggle to keep them hydrated through the long summer day. Layering your containers with Long-Fibered Sphagnum Moss is a significant step towards preventing that midsummer dry-out. Make sure to continue your regular watering schedule and adjust to your plant’s needs. You will find that your containers need less watering and can go longer without water, thus reducing your water bill. If you find a favorite pot drying out too quickly, consider repotting and using this method.
How to Plant a Porch Pot with Long-Fibered Sphagnum Moss
Step 1: Prepare the Long-Fibered Sphagnum Moss for Planting. Long-Fibered Sphagnum Moss contains no nutritional value for plants but holds 60x it’s weight in water. In a clean bucket, use your favorite water-soluble fertilizer to prepare your moss. We used one that also contains a rooting formula. Make sure to follow the directions included with your fertilizer to obtain the correct ratio of water to fertilizer.
Step 2: Using gloves, add a few handfuls of moss to your solution. Work the solution into the moss by squeezing it like a sponge and releasing the moss in the solution. You should notice the moss soaks up most of the fertilizer solution; if not adjust by adding more moss or solution to your clean bucket.
Step 3: Fill your prepared pot by layering Long-Fibered Sphagnum moss and your soil mixture in your pot, reserving some moss for Step 4. Layering the soil with moss aids in moisture retention.
Step 4: Select your plantings and arrange in your pot. Then, place the remaining moss in between the plantings to encourage root grow. Finish covering with top soil, then the decorative soil cover of your choosing.
Plants for your Sweet and Spicy Porch Pot
When planting a container garden, the rule of thumb is to have a plant that thrills or is showy, a plant that fills the pot, making it look full, and a plant that spills out of the container or falls. We highlighted some plants that should work well together to achieve this in a sweet and spicy container for our patio. Our list includes plant varieties that are known to be non-toxic or even edible for humans. We are not advocating that you eat these plants but are suggesting non-toxic plantings out of an abundance of caution. Pepper Plants have not been known to leach toxins from other plants.
Thrills: The focus of this container is on your pepper plant. I love eating Banana Peppers in my salad, so that’s what I used here, but there are so many options for peppers. You can even take on culinary themes with peppers like the scotch bonnet, ghost peppers, espada peppers, or poblano peppers by incorporating other regional plants or herbs from a favorite dish. Try out these thrills that you can easily find at your local garden center. All suggestions are compact peppers and enjoying full sun.
-Tabasco – These peppers grow upside down and are very showy
Fills – The fills should work well with your thrill. We chose to use Vincas; while many vincas work better with partial shade areas, I found they really like the patio, and the color goes well with my theme. This is where you might want to test different plants yearly to see what kinds of plants like your space. The following are some common fills that do well in containers.
-Marigolds (poisonous if eaten in excess)
-Nasturtium (peppery flavor)
Spills: Finally, we get into the spills. Incorporating plants that cascade down your pot draws the eye across your design. It makes your container look fuller, and you’ll find that creating this movement draws more attention to the details you have worked so hard on. The following are some of my favorite spills.
-Lobella (Caution can potentially be toxic if mixed with other medications if consumed)
Find More Gardening Projects:
How to Make a
Living wreaths are easy to make when using Mosser Lee’s Long-Fibered Sphagnum Mossed Wreaths frame. Mosser Lee wreaths are ready to plant, are not messy and don’t require soil.
How to Plant Nursery Stock
Many Gardeners choose to plant Nursery Stock Seedlings when growing vegetables like tomatoes, and peppers. Often the journey from seed to soil for Nursery Stock Seedlings can be stressful.
How to Create a Terrarium
Planting a terrarium is ideal for gardening indoors where space is limited for potted houseplants. Terrarium gardens also are great for those who would like to try their hand at first time gardening.
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