Guest Author - Connie Krochmal
There are many types of suitable pots and planters for cacti and succulents, including dish gardens and novelty planters.
Dish garden planters are a good choice for small cacti and succulents. These are made of different materials with the terra cotta being one of the most popular.
Typically, dish gardens are used indoors. However, they can also be used outdoors for hardy species so long as the pot is weatherproof.
Novelty planters are essentially ones with odd shapes or styles. These are typically used for holidays and special occasions. They are often shaped like pumpkins or jack-o-lanterns. This would be fine for a seasonal display, such as a kalanchoe, which is being used as a temporary flowering pot plant. But, I wouldn’t want to use such a planter year-round.
Other novelty planters are sometimes in the shape of animals. These would be suitable for year-round use. Often, these are made of ceramic or terra cotta. There’s nothing wrong with using these for cacti and succulents so long as the pot has sufficient drainage holes.
Depending on the kind of cacti or succulent you are growing, self watering planters may be an option. These have built-in water reservoirs. I have seen some very attractive self-watering planters.
The ones I have in mind are very tasteful and decorative. These are sold either for use as tabletop planters or hanging planters. I particularly like the Grow Animals and Tea Pottery line of self-watering planters. There are several versions of the Tea Pottery available with different decorative finishes.
All of these self watering planters are good for Christmas cactus, which tends to need more watering than desert cacti.
We’re used to hanging baskets where the stems cascade over the top of the pot. The Down Under pot turns this approach on its head so that the stems actually come out of the bottom of the container. As the name implies, you really do hang the pot upside down. To use this pot, you turn it right side up and fill the center with moist potting soil. Next, select a suitable plant with a small root system, and insert it into the pot. I like to use a portulaca or moss rose.
Now, allow the plant to become well-rooted in the potting soil before you turn the pot upside down. Depending on weather conditions, this might take a week or so. Once the plant is secure in the pot, turn it upside down and hang it on a hook, using the loop provided on the pot.