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What are the best plants for my patio?

If you’d rather make space for that superb Supremo Barcelona garden furniture you’ve just invested in, than devote precious square footage to borders, then why not opt for some colourful patio plants to breathe life into your outdoor lounging and entertaining space? Pots and other containers are very versatile, and can provide anything from a short-term bedding display to a permanent display of shrubs or flowers. Potted plants can create a whole new outdoor dimension, breathing life into dull corners and providing a quick fix that can easily be changed if desired. Here are some of the best plants for patio pots and containers.

Hebe

A very hardy shrub, Hebe is really easy to grow and is available in various colours, shapes and sizes – including in some cases two tone flowers. Smaller plants such as “High Voltage” are ideal for patio pots, featuring spikes of summer blooms that will eventually cover the entire shrub. Hebe is also very attractive to butterflies and bees.

Impatiens

Also known as Busy Lizzies, impatiens are ideal for shady spots, making them the ideal choice to brighten up dark, dull corners of the garden or patio. You can either grow them alone, or combine with other species – such as fuchsias – for an impressive summer display.

Dwarf Buddleja

Buddleja are traditionally known as rather large plants, but new dwarf varieties mean you can easily grow a smaller version in a patio pot. These pretty plants are much-loved by pollinators, and a single pot can contain up to three distinct colours – such as ivory, pink and indigo – if you opt to combine up to three plants in one container. Dwarf Buddleja varieties will remain compact without setting seed, and bloom over the entire summer period.

Agapanthus

Agapanthus positively thrives in a container. As this plant grows, it produces increasing numbers of flowers, making a very pretty display. As more and more British gardeners embrace this ornate plant, new varieties are emerging. The colours of this upright African lily range from bright white through to deep, dark blue. Some varieties will even produce two-tone blooms.

Clematis

Usually thought of as a climber, some clematis plants can be grown in containers. Evergreen clematis will often be staked by the garden centre, but they can also be left to trail over a pot’s edge instead. There are also new compact varieties available that will neither climb nor trail, but simply provide a pretty potted floral display.

Dwarf Lilac

Like Buddleja, lilac usually grows as a sizeable garden plant, and normally will bloom only during late spring. New dwarf variants, however, are capable of continuing to flower over summer, before blooming once more right up until the first frosts. Compact growth means this plant can be perfect for patio pots – and it is also ideal for attracting lots of pretty butterflies.

Alstroemeria

This plant is perfect for those who adore cut flowers. Flowering continuously from early summer to late autumn, these Peruvian Lilies are compact and hardy perennials, while their upright growth habit makes them ideal for patio containers.

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