Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Biggest Whiskey Barrel Planting I Have Ever Had

I mean, this thing is huge!  Who knew that the liatris would multiply like this?
 The liatris and purple coneflower stay in the whiskey barrel all winter.  The dahlias are in pots and just sitting there for now.  The bottom dahlia is yellow and looks like a daisy. It normally grows upward, but one windy day, the big blue door that used to be in this corner fell on it and nearly severed the stems.  I just left it there with its fallen stems until I had time to cut them out. Funny thing continued to grow! This planting needed a "spiller" plant anyway, so it all worked out perfectly.  I wish it was in bloom for this post. Just imagine a mass of yellow daisies at the bottom. :) While you are imaging, conjure up a nice mass of the blue salvia with the light green leaves filling in the side to your right with spikes of blue.  I think the poor salvia just ran out of space to grow.
 I used to have a pot of orange nasturtiums here, but changed to the pink dahlia yesterday.

My second whiskey barrel looks totally different.  It has the new orange coneflower 'Hot Papaya' that I bought in June.  Unfortunately 'Hot Papaya' finished blooming weeks ago and I cut it back hoping for a second flush of color.  The tall dahlia is another 'Myrtle's Folly'.  I had to tie the dahlias to the railing as they, too, were falling over from the wind.  I used fish line so you can't see the ties.  One thing I really dislike is seeing plants tied up!
 There are quite a few other plants in here, too--Russian Sage, salvia, nasturtium, ornamental kale, etc.   One of the 'Hot Papaya' flowers is just starting to rebloom.  I am hoping to get a half dozen or so of those with the dahlias as there is some orange in Myrtle.
So even though it is mid-August, I still have a lot to look forward to in my container gardens. As the perennial gardens begin to wane, the deck containers are just beginning. That is the great thing about growing dahlias, cannas, and calla lilies. When I am busy in the perennial gardens, they take little care as they are just beginning to grow. It is always August before they start needing my attention.

I also have liatris planted in the deck entrance planters.
When I used to plant it in the ground, it never spread. In fact, it always died out.  When I planted it in these containers, it spread and continues to do so every year.  I dug them from these planters for the whiskey barrel a few years ago.  The wind did a number on these, too.

So if you have tried liatris and could not get it to succeed, you may have better luck if you try it in containers. 


  1. Hmm maybe that is why I am down to almost no Liatris. As I read this I kept thinking to myself where could I put my couple of remaining bulbs, but I have a feeling this is the last year for them. Yours containers are beautiful.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

  2. Your crowdscaping in the containers is wonderful! My liatris has done fine in the ground, I do know that it likes it more on the dry side here.

  3. I always have read Liatrus loves it dry, and poor soil, but I planted a clump in solid donkey doo and it's done wonderful.
    Your barrels are spectacular---you sure have a knack for putting things together. Want to be my neighbor?????????

  4. Seeing those photos DOES make me want to give Liatris a try!

  5. They make such a beautiful planter together Zoey. I love the touch of dahlias mixed into the barrel too.The Liatris is really doing wonderful in the barrel.

  6. Zoey, I have liatris running rampant around here (we are almost pure sandy loam) but every time I tried them in the planters, no luck. So now I think next year I will try it again. Apparently my liatris like my sand and not the lovely potting soil full of nutrients?

    Your potted plants are so healthy and great idea to use fishing line to tie things up. I agree, I don't like to see baling twine holding plants hostage, either!

  7. Oh Zoey, your whiskey barrels are stunning, especially that first one! Every year I say that I'm going to plant a lot of perennials in big pots but I never do. I love cone flowers and black eye susans but never have any luck with them planted in the ground...I'll have to remember to plant them in huge containers next year!!! I still have a few flowers in bloom but they're fast dying out. Soon I'll only have my Autumn Sedum that will look decent! lol xoxo

  8. I am still envious of the Hot Papaya! Surely you know by now that you have some kind of magic with the containers. What works for you--would NEVER work for me!

  9. Your flowers look so much better than mine-so healthy! I have the dinner plate hibiscus looking nice. I also have lots of weeds.
    Your whiskey barrels are amazing!


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