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Spring alpine pot display

A table displaying which months are best to sow, plant and harvest.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
At its best
At its best

Plant is not at its best in January

Plant is not at its best in February

Plant is at its best in March

Plant is at its best in April

Plant is at its best in May

Plant is not at its best in June

Plant is not at its best in July

Plant is not at its best in August

Plant is not at its best in September

Plant is not at its best in October

Plant is not at its best in November

Plant is not at its best in December

To do
To do

Do not To do in January

Do not To do in February

Do not To do in March

Do not To do in April

Do To do in May

Do To do in June

Do To do in July

Do To do in August

Do To do in September

Do not To do in October

Do not To do in November

Do not To do in December

Just as alpines grow in unlikely crevices on mountainsides, they also enjoy the confines of containers, giving you the opportunity for lovely little displays on steps, windowsills and garden tables. In the wild, plants such as saxifrage and stonecrops (Sedum) make spreading mats, but contained in small mugs and buckets, their growth is rounded into satisfying discs of flower and foliage.

Here, we’ve combined sempervivum with stonecrop and saxifrage, but you could mix and match any number of alpine plants in a variety of containers, for a different display.

You will need

  • Saxifraga x arendsii 
  • Sedum acre
  • Sempervivum
  • Small pot
  • Crocks
  • Free-draining succulent or cactus compost
  • Horticultural grit
  • Slow-release fertiliser
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Step 1

If using a metal bucket like ours, drill holes in the base to allow water to escape. Place a few crocks in the bottom of the bucket to improve drainage. Fill two-thirds with compost mixed with a few handfuls of grit and some slow-release fertiliser.

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Step 2

Use a kitchen knife to divide larger plants like the saxifrage. This allows for more combinations in one pot.

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Step 3

Plant the split saxifrage, sempervivum and sedum in the container, tilting them at an angle so they trail prettily over the rim. Top up with compost and a layer of horticultural grit, and water well.

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Kevin Smith says…

Choose a vibrant container to complement the colour of your plants – it’ll add to the interest creating more overall impact. And think outside the box when selecting a pot – many household items can work a treat.

Kevin Smith