It seems that if you want nice planters or flower pots then a good place to head is the North European coast. I have come across more than one supplier of high end, large planters and the sources are usually Belgium or Holland. I can’t explain this but I guess from a geographical point of view it it’s pretty well connected in Europe and it not land locked so can get supplies in and out easily. Belgium and Holland also have a good design style that is less exuberant and more universal than southern European producers.
As I always say concrete is not only great for making planters and flower pots but also many other things. In fact in recent times it has seen a resergence in popularity and companies are trying to create the effect of concrete but with better suited materials. Concrete is a great material for compressive requirements but it’s pretty rubbish for tensile or flexural strength. Worktops are a good example of where concrete is used but it isn’t optimal for the use. It will stain easily with kitchen use, (which could be regarded as charming) and will chip when you drop something on the edge, not so charming.
Let have a look at some products in concrete or concrete effect material.
It would be a bit silly to preech about concrete flower pots because you either love or hate them. Some people have preconceived ideas about what concrete is and hate it, my Dad being one. I think this is because they think of grotty 70’s tower blocks and the association to them. We in the design world however relate it to an industrial, versatile and cool material that gives us the chance to make some really cool shapes that are durable and strong.
Picking a planter for a tree is a much harder task than popping down Homebase and selecting something. The pot needs to be strong, sturdy and look the part and they aren’t a very common item.
A set of steps can be as boring or as exciting as you like and a great way to liven them up with with foliage.
Kornegay Design Planters are very high quality cast concrete planters with a faceted or geometric form. They are similar to my designs but less dramatic and angular. This means that they are easier to make but no less desirable for it. The website is full of wonderfully shot images of the companies work in studio settings much like you would see from a ceramists studio
Iota are one of the largest and best known suppliers of landscape products in the UK and as a result they have some great products. Whilst their range extends over more than just planters and flower pots the most interesting range is just that. They also do water features, benches, bins anything really and all to a high quality and stylish design
The definition of an architectural planter is really no different to a normal one but customers tend to be looking for a harder wearing, higher quality environment relevant design. Many pots end up being boxes which I personally think is a bit boring and uncreative but I can also see the reasoning behind it.
The stark coldness of concrete and the fact that it is often the core material in a building makes it a real back to basics material that stands out when used in design.
The doorway is the frame to your house and the focal point for everyone entering. They walk up to it, wait at it for you to answer and step through it so it is important to make a good impression.
Setting a planters around the doorway can really help to improve you entrance and give it some warmth as well as set the style. What type of flower pot you use will really decide the mood so if it’s classic you want then a Versailles planter would be good but more modern and you want something very simple.
Have a look at the planters and flower pots that frame the doorways I found and see if there is anything you like in there.
There are many different materials that can make a planter or flower pot. pretty much anything that is water tight is ideal but if it is for outdoor use you don’t even need to stick to that criteria!
There are many choices of material for planters and flower pot but what more eco way to tie in your feature pots than to use a natural material like wood. They give a warm feel, especially when new, with a gold brown and later a silver grey. Both of which help the garden age elegantly as a unit.
Other flower pot materials like concrete, GRP, plastic or metal all give different experiences varying from practical to contemporary. My own work comes in fibre reinforced concrete but I wouldn’t blame you for wanting some of these designs.
One way to make your flower pots or planters stand out is to change the level at which they are viewed. This can be achieved either by building the planters into the garden design or, as you will see, you can buy flower pots that have legs or a frame in which to sit.
The result is that the plants can be viewed closer to eye level which gives a different perspective. It also allows you to undulate the level of the garden which help the eye move up and down, keeping the landscape interesting.
There’s a few different types in here so which do you like?
Landscaped gardens often have the luxury of having sections of the garden custom made and a trend is having custom built planters built in. They can either host a seat or just be a raised feature but either way they look very classy and contemporary.
The combination of planters and a bench enables the user to get in to the garden much more than a normal garden lay out and the planter are at a personal level.
Have a look at these images and see which is your favourite
Paths can often be accentuated by adding a flower pot, trough or planter. They can help the designer lead the observers eyes down the path to where the central piece is or they can add life and feeling to a go between area. It is easy to view a path a simply a means to an end but adding pots makes a feature of them.
Pots are particularly relevant for this area of the garden because they don’t need planting and there can often be little or no where to plant in paved or path areas.
The images below show a variety of pots on paths, from small flower pots sitting on stairs to large feature pots next to meandering paths. Hopefully you like them and are inspired.