Patio Tree

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Plant Details

Category: Container
Light: Sun to Part Shade
Bloom Season:
Height: 6-12' / 
Space: 3-6' / 
Zones: 6, 7, 8, 9
Lowest Temp: -10° to 0°F / 
-23° to -18°C
Colors: Grown for foliage

Basic Care

Best in fertile, well-drained soil. Keep soil moist, watering freely in dry weather. Apply a summer mulch to retain moisture. Prune back early each spring for best display.


Keep well-watered.


Fertile, humus-rich, well-drained soil.


Slow release feed in spring.

Ornamental Flower

cut flowers

Cut Flowers

border plants



Create a beautiful landscape just about anywhere! Potted trees and shrubs are perfect for defining deck and patio areas to create privacy, adding a dimension of height among other patio planters, or simply bringing a big-landscape feeling to small spaces. Planters can be rearranged to create new looks throughout the season.


Excellent for planting along fences and walls and can also be potted in large containers for the deck or patio. Wonderful used as an entry way focal point or brightening a sunny corner.

Patio Tree Care Guide

Start with a good quality, commercial potting soil. These are usually lighter in weight than topsoil, sterile and pest-free. Many are available with a mild starter fertilizer in the mix.

Select a container with a drainage hole or be prepared to drill holes for drainage if there are none.

Prepare the container by filling with potting soil up to 2” (5cm) from the rim of the planter. Remove the plant from its pot or pack. If plants are in a pack, gently squeeze the outside of the individual plant cell while tipping container to the side. If plant doesn’t loosen, continue pressing on the outside of the container while gently grasping the base of the plant and tugging carefully so as not to crush or break the stem until the plant is released. If the plant is in a pot, gently grasp the base of the plant, tip it sideways and tap the outside of the pot to loosen. Rotate the container and continue to tap, loosening the soil until the plant pulls smoothly from the pot.

Make a small hole in the soil slightly larger than the root ball either by hand or using a trowel. Insert the plant into the hole and press soil firmly around the roots and just covering the root ball. When all the plants are potted, water thoroughly to settle the soil and give plants a good start.

Plan ahead for plants that get tall and require staking or support cages. It’s best to install cages at planting time, before the foliage gets bushy. Vining plants require vertical space to grow, so provide a small trellis that allows the plant to grow freely and spread.

Plants in containers can dry out quickly, depending on the weather, and may need water more frequently than plants in the garden bed. Check the soil moisture with your finger. If the top 2-4” (5-10cm) of soil is dry, or plants are wilted, it is time to water.

Apply water at the soil level if possible to avoid wetting the foliage. Water the entire soil area until water runs out the base of the pot. This indicates that the soil is thoroughly wet.

Most container plants can be pruned freely to maintain the desired size and shape. Keeping the foliage trimmed also keeps the plants looking neat and tidy, encourages the plant to develop more side-shoots and flowers, and reduces the demand for the plant to develop a larger root system. This is important since the roots are in a confined space.

Remove old flowers to keep plant looking healthy and prevent seed production that drains the plant’s energy at the expense of forming new flowers.

Some plants are grown only for their attractive foliage (such as coleus, dusty miller and flowering kale). The flowers are not particularly attractive so any buds that appear should be pinched off to keep the foliage looking its best.

Fertilizers are available in many forms: granulated, slow-release, liquid feeds, organic or synthetic. Determine which application method is best for the situation and select a product with a nutritional balance designed to encourage blooming (such as 5-10-5).

Too much fertilizer can damage plants so it’s important to follow the package directions to determine how much, and how often, to feed plants.

Slow-release fertilizers are an especially good, care-free choice for container plants. A single application can often provide plants with the proper level of nutrition all season long.

Patio Tree Companion/Combination Plants


  1. Mimi Thwaites

    Do you ever give the names of plants? For instance:what kind of tree is that with the pretty red leaves? I would like to know what kinds of plants I’m looking at…

    • My Garden Life

      Hi Mimi,
      The tree in the image is a Japanese maple (Acer palmatum). For a list of specific trees that grow well in patio pots be sure to see our article Trees for Pots.


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