Cool Combination Container

Find out how to create a striking green-and-white arrangement for your patio.

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Container Contains Cool Combo of Green and White DK - Simple Steps to Success: Containers for Patios © 2007 Dorling Kindersley Limited

A sharp arrangement with lean, arching top-growth and a downpouring of spreaders and trailers, all in green and white. The New Zealand cabbage palm (Cordyline australis) is the high point, with its stiff, arching, spiky leaves crowning the outward and dangling spread of the variegated spider plant (Chlorophytum comosum 'Variegatum'), the quick-spreading stems of the fleshy-leaved Plectranthus madagascariensis, and the bright white flowers of the busy Lizzie (Impatiens 'Accent White').

Materials Needed:

  • 2 x Chlorophytum comosum 'Variegatum'
  • 1 x Cordyline australis
  • 4 x Plectranthus madagascariensis or Felicia amelloides 'Read’s White'
  • 6 x Impatiens 'Accent White' or Cuphea hyssopifolia 'Alba'

Planting and Aftercare

Container basics:
Size Approx. 24-in- (60-cm-) diameter, 24-in- (60-cm-) high, white terrazzo pot
Suits Contemporary gardens
Potting mix Multipurpose potting mix
Site Light shade

The cordyline isn’t completely hardy and will need to go in a sheltered spot over winter; if temperatures dive much below freezing, it should be brought indoors temporarily. The spider plant, which is typically grown on windowsills or in indoor hanging baskets, is even more tender. Although it will thrive outside over summer, it needs to be moved indoors for the rest of the year. The remaining plants are best grown as summer annuals, butthe plectranthus — which needs a minimum temperature of 59 degrees F (15 degrees C) — can also be grown in a conservatory during the coldest months.

Plant Specifics

Chlorophytum comosum 'Variegatum' (Image 1)
Tender plants that do not tolerate any degree of frost, Moist soil, Well-drained soil, Full sun, Partial or dappled shade

Cordyline australis (Image 2)
Plants that survive outside in mild regions or sheltered sites, Moist soil, Well-drained soil, Full sun

Plectranthus madagascariensis (Image 3)
Tender plants that do not tolerate any degree of frost, Moist soil, Well-drained soil, Partial or dappled shade

Impatiens 'Accent White' (Image 4)
Tender plants that do not tolerate any degree of frost, Moist soil, Well-drained soil, Partial or dappled shade

Excerpted from Simple Steps: Containers for Patios

©Dorling Kindersley Limited 2007

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