Tower of Blooms


Elevate your flowers to new heights.

by Charlie Thigpen    Photography by Chuck St. John

A Tower Of Blooms

There is an easy way to give plain terra-cotta planters a new look. Elevate them and take these classic containers to new heights. A few months ago, I stacked five planters on top of one another, filling them with soil as I stacked. Yellow and blue pansies were tucked into the planters to create a beautiful tower of blooms.

The Stand

On a recent buying trip, my wife Cindy and I found these interesting metal stands made to secure stacked planters. They have a wide, decorative iron base with a metal rod that runs up the center of the base to help position the planters. The rod helps align and hold the stacked pots, and the wide base prevents them from toppling over.

One Pot at a Time

First, I placed the largest pot’s drain hole over the center rod and slid the planter down onto the metal base.  Then I filled the planter with a quality potting soil and slid the next biggest container down the rod to position it in the center of the larger base pot.    I continued this stacking procedure until I achieved the desired height.  One trick I learned was to water the potting soil during the process to make it easier to level and place the planters. Fluffy, dry soil won’t pack well and can be more difficult to work with.

Plant Them Up

For winter and spring blooms, I planted “True Blue” pansies and “Plentifall Yellow” pansies. The blue pansies and the trailing or cascading yellow pansies quickly filled out the planters. As a bonus, the “Plentifall Yellow” pansies are sweetly scented and fill the garden with drifts of fragrance.

Pot Topper

About six inches of the metal rod above the top planter needed to be disguised, so I created a tool badge out of old garden tools.  I used zip ties to hold them together and wrapped baling wire over the plastic ties to hide them.  An old spray nozzle was the centerpiece of the tool badge.  The hollow end of the nozzle allowed it to slide easily over the exposed rod to conceal it.   The garden tool badge was a fun finishing touch.

Try this at Home

This blooming tower is an easy project and makes a great garden focal point. You don’t have to use terra-cotta pots. You can use any type of planters that will work with your landscape. In the summer, try succulents, flowering annuals or attractive foliage plants. Stack up some planters this spring and take your garden to another level. You can find all of the components for this project, and many others, at my shop at Pepper Place.•

Charlie Thigpen is a

horticulturalist and the

owner of Garden Gallery

in Pepper Place.

4 Responses to “Tower of Blooms”

  1. pam says:

    Where can I purchase a metal stand like the one you show?

  2. Katherine Onstott says:

    I would like to know where to purchase this rod also. I have one I bought several years ago at a street market. Now my sister wants one too.

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