En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - May 18, 2009

From: Old Orchard Beach, ME
Region: Northeast
Topic: Container Gardens
Title: Container plants for deck in Maine
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I live on the ocean in Maine. Fourth floor deck. I want to plant containers and boxes with annuals that can withstand a lot of wind. We get mostly sun but some shade as well. Of course, there is the salt factor, too. Any recommendations??

ANSWER:

First, we need to explain to you that the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the planting, protection and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which the plants are being grown. Ordinarily, to answer this question we would go to our Native Plant Database, and search on Maine, annual, and sun to part shade. When we did this, we really found very little appropriate to your purposes. We recommend native plants, because many non-natives can become invasive, taking over natural habitats, and because they are adapted to the climate, rainfall and soil of the area where they are being grown. None of these seems likely to apply in the artificial habitat you are creating. In order to raise the natives we were able to find, and because of your short growing season and the extreme conditions, you would have to start seeds indoors, and then put them in containers when it was warm enough for them to survive. So, we would recommend that you go to a local nursery and select plants already in bloom or about to bloom, plant them in good potting soil, and you should be able to enjoy the flowers until the first freeze. Few, if any, of those plants are likely to be native to Maine, so giving you a list of plants from our database is kind of pointless. As high as your garden will be, with the ocean winds, and unprotected as the plants will be in pots, you may have to experiment to even find suitable plants. Sorry we couldn't help you.

 

More Container Gardens Questions

Container gardening for pool in southern California
October 08, 2008 - I have large planters around pool would like to know what plants to use that will not grow to high or to big and will not have large roots home located in camarillo ca.
view the full question and answer

Hanging plants for Austin, TX
May 18, 2014 - I'm looking for a hanging potted flower suggestion for Austin. Most locations are shaded under a large tree, but some locations may have several hours of afternoon sun. I'd love to see some hummin...
view the full question and answer

Plants for indoor container gardening from Lax Vegas NV
May 10, 2013 - What is an good flower to grow in a pot? I live in a apt., and like roses,tulips etc. if that helps any.
view the full question and answer

Placement of lemon cypress tree in Miami, FL
May 25, 2008 - Where is the best place to have a lemon cypress tree? indoors or out? Presently in south Miami climate, Scott's potting soil, clay pot, with good drainage.
view the full question and answer

Failure of Gerbera daisies in hanging basket
July 08, 2008 - I had perennial Gerbera daisies in a hanging basket, the flowers died,I was not sure whether to remove just the flower or to go from the flower to the stem at the plants main stem? There is nothing re...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center