Hardscape Design Ideas

Make a Wall of Fiery Geraniums

If you have a sunny wall, buy young geraniums in late spring to create splashes of vibrant color in summer.

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Wander down any residential street in the Mediterranean region and you will find houses ablaze with fiery geraniums. These drought-loving plants bask happily in the burning sun in their tiny terra-cotta pots, creating a dazzling display that requires very little care.

When to Plant: Late spring
At Their Best: Early summer to early fall
Time to Complete: 2 hours

Materials Needed:

  • bedding geraniums (Pelargonium)
  • small terra-cotta wall pots
  • broken clay pot pieces and gravel
  • multipurpose soil
  • slow-release all-purpose fertilizer
  • masonry nails, or masonry anchors and lag screws
  • hammer or electric drill

Prepare the Wall Pots

Buy at least five wall pots and make sure that each has a drainage hole — if not, make one with an electric drill. Cover the hole with a piece of clay pot. Add 1 inch of gravel and then a layer of soil to the base of each container.

Gravel Helps DrainageEnlarge Photo+Shrink Photo-DK - How to Grow Practically Everything © 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Plant the Geraniums

Water the plants. Put one geranium, still in its original container, into the wall pot and check that it will sit at least 1 inch below the rim when planted. Remove it from its pot and plant up, firming in around it with multipurpose soil mixed with a little slow-release fertilizer. Water well. Tip: Geraniums require watering every few days in summer, so make sure you can reach them easily or use a long-handled hose. As the plants grow and their roots develop, it's best to water them from below by placing the wall pots in a bowl of water for 30 minutes (Image 2).

Fix Pots to Wall

For a more dramatic effect, paint the wall white or a pale color. Hammer in a masonry nail at a slight angle; alternatively, if you can't drive in a nail, drill a hole with an electric drill and insert a masonry anchor and lag screw. Fit the pots onto the wall.

Wall Nails Make Good Hooks to Hang PotsEnlarge Photo+Shrink Photo-DK - How to Grow Practically Everything © 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Excerpted from How to Grow Practically Everything

© 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited

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