When it comes to Container plants for full sun I like to select plants that provide multiple uses. That might be to provide privacy, hide something ugly, produce fruits or vegetables, give off a pleasant scent or simply just adding pops of colour.
These are just some of the ideas we use and like. Hopefully they provide you with some ideas to use or build upon.
Herbs for pots
Loads of herbs will do really well in pots. This is great because you can plant your favourites in nice ornamental pots close to the kitchen.
- Thyme– There are many different thyme varieties that are used in cooking. Lots of them look great in pots. Thyme will not tolerate wet roots so ensure the pot provides adequate drainage.
- Rosemary– A few different cultivars that you could choose from. Prostrate (ground cover) varieties look amazing spilling out of decorative pots.
- Mint– Has attractive foliage and smells great! It’s also a natural pest repellant! There are many different varieties available many of which will grow great in pots.
- Sage– An attractive plant with differing foliage colours and striking blue flowers. Smells great and also deters pests!
- Oregano– A must have for us in the kitchen! Great for pots! Renowned for really bringing out the flavours of Italian and Greek cooking.
- Basil– This is another must have in our kitchen. There’s nothing better than walking out the kitchen door and picking some fresh basil for a homemade pizza or pasta.
- Lemon Verbena– Smells absolutely divine! We love to plant this in pots near the front door or under windows. Lemon verbena can be used to replace lemon zest in most recipes.
- Parsley– Another must have kitchen herb. The foliage on parsley is very attractive. A good source of vitamins and fibre. Parsley only lives for 2 years so will need replacing.
- Chives– Are a really easy plant to grow in a pot or container. The grassy foliage looks nice in a decorative pot. Chives are reputed to be an aphid repellant, so great to include in and potted herb garden!
- Coriander (Cilantro)– A great little herb with all the parts of the plant being edible. Attractive foliage, but it is an annual herb so will need replacing every year.
- Dill– Is another annual so will need replacing every year. It self seeds very easily. A very common herb for soups.
- Bay leaf– Bay trees do really well in containers. A really popular cooking herb. They love being clipped. You can create many different shapes. Oh and they smell great!
Succulents for pots
Most succulents do really well in full sun. They also can withstand very hot conditions. Being water misers makes them perfect for container growing.
- Sedums– These are one of my favourite kinds of succulent. There are many different variations available. Sedum ‘gold mound’ look great cascading out of decorative pots. I like the plump leaves of ‘Jelly bean’. Sedums are really easy to care for, they are a great beginner succulent.
- Echeveria– These are really very attractive succulents and are available in a wide variety of different colours. The way the leaves form creates attractive rosettes of foliage. They do also produce flowers.
- Pig face– These are attractive ground cover succulents. They look fantastic spilling out of a tall pot. The foliage comes in a wide variety of colours, but it’s the flowers that are truly amazing!
- Jade– Also known as money plant. These are said to bring luck and many people like to have one in a pot by their front door. They are really fast growers and look great in pots.
- Chalk sticks– Low growing popular succulent. This is another spreading succulent. The blue colour of the foliage is very nice.
- Aloe vera– Aloe are weird looking succulents and honestly i don’t find them attractive. However the fact that it has multiple medicinal uses means its found it’s way onto our porch.
Flowers for pots
Adding flowers in containers is a great way to brighten up the entry to your home and invite guests in.
- Petunias– Probably the most commonly grown potted flowering plant on the planet. Petunias put on an amazing colourful show throughout the warmer months of the year. So many colours to choose from!
- Calibrachoa– These are commonly known a perennial petunias. They also put on an amazing colourful performance. They will last a few seasons whereas regular petunias will only last one!
- Geraniums– Another popular choice for potted colour. Geraniums are super hardy and easy to grow. A great beginner plant for a budding gardener looking for some colour for their potted garden.
- Daisies– There is quite a number of different genus of plants with the name daisy. There are loads of different growth habits and flower colours to choose from. My favourites are from the argyranthemum genus.
- Bacopa– These flower continuously throughout the year. Very fast growing. Perfect for spilling out of a tall container or hanging pot.
Fruits for pots
Just cause you have a small area to work with doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy home grown fresh fruits. These plants will do great in containers!
- Citrus– Lemons, Limes, Oranges and Cumquats all do really well in pots. Not only do you get the fruits they really look very attractive in pots with their deep green glossy foliage.
- Feijoa– An attractive shrub which will produce and abundance of fruit in autumn. Often called pineapple guava, it’s said to taste like a combination of strawberry, guava and pineapple.
- Nectarines– There a multiple dwarf varieties of nectarines available and they do really well in pots.They are self pollinators so you’re bound to get fruit!
- Peaches– The foliage is very attractive. Like nectarines these are self pollinating.
- Strawberries– Who doesn’t love fresh strawberries? And yes, you can grow them in containers. Not only are they delicious, they look amazing in pots. Dark green foliage with juicy red fruits. Yum!
- Blueberries– Sometimes it’s easier to grow these in containers as they like an acidic soil. You can create your own mix using peat moss or buy a mix suited to azaleas and camellias.
- Raspberries– I prefer to grow raspberries in pots so that they don’t escape me in the garden. Raspberries are notorious runners (sending out suckers). By confining them to a pot they are much easier to manage.
Foliage plants for pots
Sometimes a plants foliage can be attractive in it’s own right. Grow these plants in containers purely for their striking foliage or shapes.
- Nandina– There are a few different nandinas now available. They are all easy to grow and provide a great structural shape. The foliage changes colours throughout the year providing interest throughout!
- Coprosma– Commonly referred to as mirror bush. The glossy foliage is very attractive. There are a multitude of different foliage colours available most with two or three colours. Loves being pruned! Very easy to maintain and looks amazing in containers.
- Yucca– A very hardy easy to grow plant. Forms and attractive trunk with grass like foliage.
- Flax– Clumping plant with attractive grass like foliage. There are many colours available from purple-green-yellow-pink-red. Whatever tickles your fancy 😉
- Corokia– Also known as wire netting bush. This is a very interesting shrub. The branches form twisted interesting shapes. Can also make a great bonsai!
Vegetables for pots
Just like growing fruits don’t let small spaces put you off growing fresh veggies! These veggies will do great in containers in full sun.
- Tomatoes– A great plant for a container as you can get them started inside a little earlier. Plant a few out at different times to extend your season.
- Chilli– These always looks great in decorative pots. Plant a few different varieties to provide multiple fruit colours.
- Capsicums– Bell peppers are just as easy to grow as chilli and look just as good. Plant in a larger container than the chilli though.
- Peas and beans– Easily grown in pots provided that they have something to climb on.
- Lettuce– You can grow different lettuce in a container in much the same way as you would create a succulent bowl. Plant different varieties and colour variations. Not only will it look great outside but on the plate too!
- Silverbeet (Swiss chard)– There is some vary attractive forms of silverbeet now available. The different coloured stems look amazing clustered together.
- Cucumbers– Use a large container and water really well and you’ll be rewarded with a bountiful harvest.
- Rhubarb– Easily grown in a container and looks great. Red stems, green leaves nice pot= winner! And i just love stewed rhubarb. Yum!
- Egg plant– Excellent summer crop for your vegetable potted garden. Much like the capsicums and chilli looks great once the fruits set.
Hopefully this short list has given you some ideas or inspirations for growing various plants in containers. We are always learning and adding new content join us so we can all learn together.