Summer wouldn’t be complete without some beautiful containers. Whatever look you’re going for, we’ve done the hard work for you, picking a mix of plants for sun and shade, in a range of different colours and planting styles.
Our selection mixes traditional bedding plants such as garvinea with perennials such as black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia), achillea and penstemon, with grasses and foliage plants for extra interest. Take inspiration from our selection, below.
More summer gardening content:
This fiery pot is perfect for a sunny spot.
This bright pot will thrive in a sunny position. The plants may not be fully hardy, so will need some protection over winter.
Garvinea (hardy gerbera)
- Begonia sutherlandii
- Carex comans
- Angelonia angustifolia
This meadow-inspired pot will do best in a sunny spot.
This pot will attract bees and other pollinators.
This planting combination will thrive in a shady area.
Summer container planted up with nicotianas
It wouldn’t be summer without some fragrance to fill the air.
Light and dark
Bidens, coleus and euphorbia container
Use a black container to contrast with the paler tones of these plants.
Shades of pink
Green and purple summer container
Perfect for a sunny spot, this container is packed with shades of pink, purple and green.
Pink + white
Pink and white summer container
This floaty combination will last for months on end.
Move on up
Summer container with climbing plants
Extend the interest vertically with climbing plants that flower along their length.
Keep it simple
Lavender in a metal container
Planted in a rustic metal container, this bountiful lavender exudes south of France charm.
Fresh and formal
Wooden tub planted with box
Planted in a wooden tub, this clipped box cone is ideal where formal containers are required.
Terracotta pot with sun-loving succulents
Planted with sun-loving succulents, this pot is best sited in those hot spots of your garden.
Brilliant for bees
Bee-friendly container with scabious, lavender and salvia
Bees are especially attracted to purple and pink flowers, and this pot is brimming with them.
Daisy-filled summer container
This cheery pot is filled with long-flowering daisies, complemented by glaucous brassica leaves.
Summer container with nicotianas
Nicotianas are brilliant performers. This pared back pairing combines a red-brown and a green-flowered variety.
Container planted with zinnias and decorative veg
A mix of zinnias are a cheering sight in this pot, but they’re supported by beautiful veg and herbs that hide bare soil.
Direct-sown cornflowers in bloom
This refreshingly blue container is planted up with masses of cornflowers, direct-sown in early spring.
Container planted up with cottage garden plants
This three-plant blend will lend a relaxed, cottage garden feel to wherever you site it.
You don’t always need to pack a container with different to plants to make an impression. This robust pearlwort will positively sparkle all by itself.
Keep the display going
Many of the plants shown here are perennials. Cut back after flowering and they should reappear next year. Alternatively, plant in the garden when the display is over.