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Pots & Planters for Autumn

As the evenings draw in, and we prepare for bright chilly days and frosty nights, a planted pot near the front door is an easy way to bring some seasonal interest to our gardens. At jarmanmurphy, we often suggest clients position a cluster of pots near the front door for a warm welcome and to add some life to a space that is occasionally quite bare and can be overlooked. We love to have plants right up close to the windows, too, and often have pots that can be brought nearer the house for days too cold or dreary to venture down the path.

There are many different containers to choose from; it’s best to select a material that echoes those already used in the garden and spend as much as you can. Don’t be afraid of going big either. Tall or large pots can act as sculptural pieces, too, sitting planted, or unplanted, in borders where early perennials have disappeared underground for the winter. They can visibly anchor a space, providing a solid mass to hold the eye and offer a solid focal point.

We love working with grasses as they provide instant movement and colour right through the season, with deciduous varieties just needing a cut back in late winter as the bulbs we plant beneath begin to push through. Some of our favourites are Seslaria autumnalis, Miscanthus sineness ‘Morning Light’ (as seen in the Sitting Spiritually garden) and Carex testacea (strictly speaking, a sedge, but who’s arguing here?!). Anemanthele lessoniana is a pretty near perfect grass for a container, growing to around 80cm, and happy in full sun or shade. Its slender foliage in hues from bronzy green through to bright orange forms a loose fountain of movement and texture all year. Arching sprays of delicate reddish brown flowers in late summer catch the morning dew and sparkle in the autumn sun like tiny gems.

As we try and cram as many plants as we can into a garden (the Sitting Spiritually garden being a prime example!), we’ll often place a simple bowl of drought tolerant plants in underused spaces such as porches and by doorsteps. Sempervivums and Saxifragas are such intriguing plants to look at and need very little in the way of maintenance make them perfect for gardeners of all kinds.

You don’t even need to limit yourself to perennials - some small trees and shrubs also cope with being in pots and planters. Who can resist the fiery tones of Acer foliage as the winter sun sets it alight? Underplanted with spring bulbs this is a real treat and a stylish focal point. And how about evergreen Sarcococca hookeriana var. Digyna as it fills the winter air with its delicious scent? A wonderful surprise from a gorgeous shrub that we love to place by doors and windows.

Saxifraga Umbrosa
Saxifraga & Grasses
Evergreen scented Trachelospurnum jasminoides, Libertia, Asarum europeaum

With many thanks to Sarah Jarman & Anna Murphy

Jarmanmurphy Garden Design

sarah jarman +44 7872 972259
anna murphy +44 7812 086104


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Posted by Siobhan on September 30th 2019

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