Garden Photo of the Day

READER PHOTOS! Michaele’s container gardens in Tennessee

This container is along the walkway to our front door. I wanted pots that would bring a smile. Click directly on the photo to enlarge it in a pop-up.
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Michaele Anderson

Today’s photos are from Michaele Anderson, a.k.a. Meander1! Michaele says, “About a month ago I got a serious attack of Sheila Schultz-itis (meaning that in the best possible way)…I felt an irresistible urge to try my hand at some container plantings filled with adorable sedums and succulents and non-flowering greenery.

A close-up.
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Michaele Anderson

“I know my finished products don’t have the award-winning artistry and drama of Sheila’s masterful creations but it was a fun first-time effort. I scrounged around in my basement, garage, and “maybe I’ll use it someday” piles of stuff to come up with pots for planting in. I’m already thinking about how I can improve on them for next year. I know I need to include some taller selections for more interest. I am receptive to any tips my fellow commenters might want to give.”

These are so great, Michaele! They’re fun and inviting, and oh-so-cute. Sheila, is she making you proud?

This container is along the walkway to our front door. I wanted pots that would bring a smile.
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Michaele Anderson

***** For those of you who might not know, Sheila Schultz, in addition to being a frequent commenter on the GPOD (and her garden’s been featured, too! Refresh your memory HERE and HERE), has also won the Fine Gardening Container Design Challenge not once but TWICE! Want to give her a run for her money this year? The 2012 challenge deadline is in mid-August. There’s still plenty of time to enter! Get all the details HERE. *****

This container is along the walkway to our front door. I wanted pots that would bring a smile.
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Michaele Anderson
The container with a fish theme is at the entry to our waterfall area.
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Michaele Anderson
I just wanted an excuse to highlight this colorful, frivolous birdhouse, and some chartreusy low sedum and asparagus fern seem to do the trick.
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Michaele Anderson
These are herb filled pots outside my kitchen window being guarded by a ferocious chicken.
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Michaele Anderson
This metal sleigh is filled with different varieties of young euphorbias. My local nursery was practically giving them away but had no info on them but I bought a couple of each. I am probably in for some surprises as they mature.
Photo/Illustration: Courtesy of Michaele Anderson

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View Comments


  1. wGardens 07/24/2012

    Michaela, For a "first time" effort, I think you did a great job! These are fun, interesting and appealing! You have a natural gift for fabulous work! Keep 'em coming!

  2. Steepdrive 07/24/2012

    I love them! Where did you get those interesting containers on wheels? Thanks for the inspiration. I know now what's missing in my arrangements.

  3. Jay_Sifford 07/24/2012

    Michaela, thanks for sharing your creations with us. I think they are beautiful. I can tell that you get a lot of enjoyment out of them and, to me, that's the main point of gardening. Great work!

  4. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 07/24/2012

    Wonderful! Especially the wheelbarrow. It is a scree garden on wheels. No need for vertical elements there. Beth Chatto's gravel garden book comes to mind. Thanks for sharing!

  5. dukeofargy 07/24/2012

    You've added considerable whimsey to your planters. Well done. I think they are truly cool. Thanks for sharing your creativity with us.

  6. tractor1 07/24/2012

    Michaele, you're a natural! I love them all, it's so difficult to choose a favorite but I have to go with Chicken Little, or is that Lucy Goosey, and those pot trivets are a great idea. Thank you for sharing.

  7. annek 07/24/2012

    Very creative! So many cheery containers and accoutrements. I'd love to see your 'maybe I'll use it some day' stash as you have quite the variety. As tractor1 said "you are a natural".

    I think my favorite is the wheelbarrow arrangement but a close second is the charming little birdhouse floating above asparagus fern (I believe?) and sedum. They all made me smile. I can't imagine much you could do to enhance your first project

  8. soilgoil 07/24/2012

    Michaele, visitors must smile all the way to your front door! I know your containers made ME smile this morning. I especially love the wheelbarrow and the herb garden. I noticed that your birdhouse container appears to be a planter set in an old wrought iron table base. I've done the same thing with a collection of succulents. So much fun! Thank you for sharing, Michaele. I look forward to your daily comments, and today was a wonderful bonus.

  9. kzoocookie 07/24/2012

    I love them -- pots and plants and little critters, especially the flowery pig. You must have had a ball!
    I want to be notified if you ever have a garage sale!

  10. passwords 07/24/2012

    I just LOVE LOVE LOVE succulents in pots! You have done a wonderful job Michaela. The little touches add a whimsical feeling to the pots. You've given me inspiration to give them a try.

  11. aacrane 07/24/2012

    I liked your comment about the euphorbia planted in the metal sleigh. I'm in SoCal, and I planted two in the back yard a couple years ago. I now have them popping up all over the place! Talk about a self-sower. The good part is that they easily pull out and re-plant without any down time. Though I have to say, recently, they've been ending up in the hot compost. Enough is enough! That said, I have a gorgeous pot of starts with little yellow flowers just popping out right now, and it's just a pretty pot on the patio.

  12. sheila_schultz 07/24/2012

    Oh dear... if this is your first try at using succulents and non-flowering plants in containers I am in big trouble Michaela! Your gardens that we have seen in the past are as beautiful as your ever so thoughtful words, and your containers brought a huge smile to my face this morning... they are just plain fun! I'm so happy my work gave you the nudge to try your hand at using my favorite plants, succulents. Watch out, you may become addicted, too! And yes, Michelle, I am very proud!!! This is definitely going to be a very tough challenge this year, good luck everyone!

  13. olympic_mtn_gardener 07/24/2012

    All of your creations are great! I especially love the old wheelbarrow. The wheelbarrow itself is so interesting, and it is stunning planted with the complementary foliage colors you have chosen.

  14. wittyone 07/24/2012

    I, too, love your containers. What is that one with the big high wheel in the topmost picture? I't so different looking and such a nice size for those little pots. Such nice combinations---I don't think you need change anything or ask for suggestions!

  15. User avater
    meander_michaele 07/24/2012

    Hi, all, thanks so much for all the positive reinforcement and for taking the time to notice little details. Your generous complements have made my day!
    To those who wondered about the big wheeled "thingie" (that is my catch-all word when in doubt for a real name). I think I ordered it from a catalogue many years ago and it was charmingly referred to as a grape gathering cart. The wooden box that it originally came with had disintegrated a few years back so my dear husband raided his stockpile of saved boards and found one that was covered in lichens to build me a new box for this latest endeavor of mine. We did the same for the teal metal sleigh planted with the euphorbias.

    tractor1, there's a cute story behind my long necked chicken...I had bought it as a gift for a friend who raises chickens but then I chickened out (ha, how could I resist that pun) in giving it to her because it was so silly looking. This is the first time it has made it off of a shelf in the garage after 3 years of banishment. Thanks for appreciating it.

    kzoocookie, yes, I should probably put a full page ad in Fine Gardening for the garden knickknack sale of all time when I'm finally wheeled off my beloved property. I have some interesting treasures as well as a ridiculous number of smile evokers. It was sweet that you mentioned the flowers on the little pig.

  16. pattyspencer 07/24/2012

    You would never know that this was a "first time" Absolutely beautiful!! Everything works well together and has a very professional feel and look!

  17. pattyspencer 07/24/2012

    Tractor1 - so sorry to hear about Blackie! You've taken really good care of her if she's 10 and has diabietes for that long - she's one lucky cat to have you as an owner!! If that's a pic you've posted of her - she's really pretty!!

  18. tractor1 07/25/2012

    pattyspenser: Thank you. Blackie is a boy. He's very mellow and very friendly. Each morning he goes around greeting everyone. His sister, Peach, is the exact opposite, very pushy and territorial, but Blackie is bigger and much stronger so it all balances out. Blackie eats slowly and isn't at all agressive so to make sure he eats all his food I have to take him into a bathroom and shut us in. Once he eats more than half I give him his insulin. Every once in a while he refuses to eat, then I need to sit with him all day and try different foods. Now he is back on schedule and is fine.

  19. pattyspencer 07/25/2012

    Tractor1 - glad to hear he's doing better. I have a picky eater as well - a Westie who is 14 - she follows me everwhere and if I put her food down and walk away she follows so I always have to be there - and she's a slow eater as well.

  20. Formandfoliage 07/25/2012

    Nicely done! And looks like you had fun doing them, which is really the point of it all.

  21. NevadaSue 12/13/2012

    Michaela, I'm looking back through pictures today. I just love the chicken! :) ...and it looks great in your garden. YOu have done so well with the pots. I love all the garden art. the sleigh is wonderful and the Wheel barrel that is along your front walk is amazing with the turtles. I love the selection of succulents. I have thought of doing something smaller with my old wheel barrel from my uncle and now i'm really motivated to do it after seeing yours. I hope you will share what you do with your planting containers next summer.

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