Urban Containment

Two city gardens—one beautiful, one edible— demonstrate their command of containers.

An Edible Sanctuary
Photo by Craig Bares

Want to Contain it? Consider the Following:

“Containers are expressions of the people composing them.” —Scott Endres, Tangletown Gardens

• The Houseplant.
If the weather is warm, trot those babies out, Endres says. “Houseplants are fun outdoors, especially in tough spots.” As long as the weather is fair and you’re watering, don’t worry. “If they can grow in a dorm room, they’re going to like the oppor-tunity to be outside.”
• The Art of Illusion.
Endres was at first disappointed with his backyard’s tiny size. “I wanted a water feature! A big patio! A raised terrace! But I looked at it on graph paper and saw that they would never work.” So he created the illusion of those things. “I designed a ‘floating patio’—a moat around the back patio filled with koi. It gives the psycho-logical safety of an island.”
• The Grand Entrance.
“The front yard is public space, often viewed by cars going 30 miles an hour,” Endres says. “Use broader brush strokes.” Endres arranges containers in big groups and uses large planters to match the scale of his house.
• The Pots.
A broken container can break your heart (and your pocketbook). Choose pots to withstand Minnesota’s weather and don’t let water freeze in them.