Some Good Reasons To Plant Pots For Spring

Our spring has been an exasperatingly wintry sort of gray and cold. April has been a last of the winter month. But today April 30th, we have blue skies. That blue is a giant step towards spring. Every gardener in my zone is on that plane that promises to leave our wretched April weather behind. The sun drenching my landscape with warmth and promise-that promise could not be more welcome. Was this worst April of my gardening lifetime? Yes.

No one is happy looking at empty pots. It has been too cold to plant anything except the most cold tolerant plants. Can you hear me sighing?  Not that my memory of past Aprils mean much. I know that the weather cycles in years vastly bigger than my time on this earth. The theys who keep records say this is the coldest April we have had for 134 years. We’ve all been living that scene. Sitting out a few nights ago after work made me wish I had a coat like Milo’s. Today we are slated to hit 80 degrees.

Today we will plant the last of our spring container plantings. Do I plan to post pictures of what we have planted this spring? No. It will take weeks for what we have planted to grow on and look like something. Spring container plantings are at their most beautiful the first of June. Perfect timing, in my estimation. My spring pots coming in to their own later in May prevents me from rushing to plant too early for summer. Nature, and gardeners, abhor a vacuum. The sight of bare dirt is instantly followed by the urge to plant. The urge to plant this year is especially strong. To follow are pictures of some of my favorite spring container plantings. Most of them were taken in late May.

pansies and violas

variegated lavender

orange osteos, heuchera, and orange pansies

curly pussy willow and sweet peas

spring pots featuring pansies, violas, dill, and fan willow

Marguerites, pansies, violas and cream alyssum in a basket

Bok Choy, osteospermum, mini marguerites and alyssum

White osteospermum, chrysanthemum paludosum “Snowland”, yellow petunias and blue salvia


carexviolas and angelina

lettuce and alyssum in a basalt pan

Variegated lavender, cream alyssum and strawberries in mid AprilThat mid April at the end of May-striking.


  1. Marilyn Vala says

    Love it! Chicago plants for every season…love to see the changes!!!

  2. debra phillips says

    As always Deborah, massively creative & original. I have never seen variegated lavender! We too are headed for the upper 80’s today, madness

  3. It was 85º and humid yesterday here in MPLS….and to think we had an official blizzard a couple weeks ago – geesh – a spring for the books! I have been planning on doing some container gardening this year. You have given me some good ideas here – texture, color, varying heights. Can I use dirt/ compost/ peat combo that I make myself from my yard? Or, should I buy bags of commercial soil mix? Thanks Deborah – nice photos as always.

  4. What a joy to open your posts, especially when they’re entitled ‘planting pots for spring.’
    Always so inspiring! Every single image makes me smile!

  5. Looks to me like there will be no spring. Maybe summer will just launch? Thursday is supposed to be 80 degrees. We shall see? Your containers are cheerful, bright and most important cold tolerant. My trees are all in bud but the cold prevents any progress toward flower and leaf. Still looking forward to warm soil and the gardening season!

  6. I want that little angel birdbath… you sell them?

    • Deborah Silver says

      Dear Jordan, We have had that English lead birdbath on and off for a good many years, but I believe we recently sold the one we had. I will check in to it further for you. best, Deborah

  7. Laurin Lindsey says

    Fabulous containers and plant combo’s. I pinned a few as reminders. You have such a talent for design!!!

Leave a Comment