Thursday, July 31, 2008

An Old Standard



In late February for the past 10 years or so, I've purchased a hanging basket from Lowe's, filled with Creeping Charlie (Glechoma hederacea) and Wandering Jew (Tradescantia zebrina) to place in a tall patio planter. I spend about $13, an inexpensive way to have a great spot of color on my patio for a few months, until the hot weather does it in, usually by June 15. When I first place it in the planter, I cut off the wires and the hook for hanging, and then just watch it grow. This year my plant has continued to thrive well past its expected expiration date, and is now sweeping the patio floor. I've trimmed it a couple of times just to keep it off the floor, but otherwise, I do nothing to it but water.

I think the reason it is doing so well is that this year I started watering it twice a day beginning in mid-June. It's amazing to me that the root system can support all this foliage. The size of this arrangement is deceptive. The pot it's in is an 8" pot with a depth of 6". That pot is sitting inside a large ceramic planter pot, and the planted pot is resting on another pot turned upside down.



Each year when I see the arrangement moving toward its demise, I take off a few cuttings and place them in a vase in the house. Those cuttings can last for years in the vase if I choose to let them go.

9 comments:

Claude said...

There's definitely something to be said for the old standards... I have to water these 2 times a day here for them to make it through the summer, I'm sure that's the reason this has managed to stick around.

Dee said...

I love the purple mixed in with the green! It is lovely and a really neat idea!

Dee said...

I love the purple mixed in with the green! It is lovely and a really neat idea!

beckie said...

What a delightful mix of vineing plants.I've seen those at Lowe's with impatiens in them but never these-maybe I wasn't looking closely enough. I can just imagine the spot of color it adds to your patio. That extra watering must have helped. zIt's fun to start plants like these indoors. I used to do the same with some and yea, they will survive a long time in just water.

MrBrownThumb said...

Good use of one of my favorite "indoor plants" outdoors. I like how you seem to keep yours compact because it actually keep the focus on the color of the plant and not the growth pattern.

btw, I just spent about an hour Googling after reading your comment on my blog. It has been interesting.

Julie said...

I love my water drinking long, sweeping plants on my front porch! Aren't they just great??? These are a beautiful color combination!

Lancashire rose said...

What a great idea. I'll be over at Lowes next tear to see if they have those plants for sale. The colors are perfect.

Young Snowbird said...

I really love Creeping Charlie! I grew up in Minnesota- Twin Cities. A friend of mine in Minneapolis had a great lawn and garden. Her neighbor had a bit of creeping charlie edging the front walk. I told my friend that I thought that creeping charlie was my favorite and that I once I had a yard of my own, I wanted it, instead of grass. She looked wide-eyed at me and said, "be prepared to have your neighbors hate you. Creeping Charley takes over everything." I'd hit a sore spot. oh yeah.
No worries, now I'm a Phoenix dweller and can do as you did and get Creeping Charlie to grow in a pot. Cool! Does it grow in shade? Can I use it as a vine and grow it up a wall? My condo entry needs some serious greening, but its on the north, so gets no sun.

brittany said...

Huh. Interesting to see this on here- we just recently had to toss ours after it got spots and withered away within days.. I loved that plant, it actually lasted for a few years- we had two of them hanging on our back porch and they've grown pretty large, I'll definitely replace them as cooler temps approach.