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I have 3 stone containers which I call my fonts, because they look exactly like church fonts, ie large, deep, steepsided bowls on pedestals. These were rescued from a skip (with permission) some years ago and I usually plant them up with geraniums and annuals such as petunias etc in spring,but so many plants are needed that it is getting rather expensive. The containers stand in full sun all day and are exposed to all weathers. I was wondering if I could make little alpine gardens in them, or fill them with succulents? I would prefer alpines for some colour, but would they survive in such an open position? I'm sure I read that they don't like too much rain......! Any advice or other suggestions would be most welcome.



I don't think the rain is an issue so long as the 'fonts' have drainage holes. You don't need to jam it full of plants either. Give each plant 'elbow room' so it can reach its fullest potential - some trailing, some creeping and some upright. You can use some decorative mulch (colored stones, gravel, shredded bark, sea shells, sand, etc). Since you like alpines, check out 'Blue Star Juniper'. Just about all alpines want full sun or they get scraggly looking. The biggest factor is drainage. They can't sit in water for extended periods. If the planters need drainage holes - break out the power drill and drill some yourself. It's easy & fun.

28 Sep, 2019


Thanks Bathgate, I will check the drainage and will certainly get Blue Star Juniper. I'm new to growing alpines and don't know much about them but my interest has been sparked the androsace I bought this year. You have given me some ideas for the mulch too.

28 Sep, 2019

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