How to Choose the Right Planter

How to Choose the Right Planter for Your Plants at Payless Nursery BWP

Whether it’s a houseplant, ornamental tree, cactus, or another decorative container plant, the choice of which container, planter, and pottery to choose for your plants will inevitably come up.

Just as much as fertilizer types or potting soil are essential parts of your plant care choices, how to select a suitable planter for your plants is also an important part of the well-being and beauty of your green friends!

Here are some valuable key tips for selecting a suitable potted container to enhance the well-being and beauty of your green plant friends.


It’s both obvious but often underestimated: size does indeed matter. If you’re anticipating a larger plant, you’ll need a large container; of course, a small plant is best suited to a small container. You’ll also need to consider the root size and needs of the plant: does it have deep roots or shallow ones? Deep or large-rooted plants will suitably require deeper or larger containers.

Another thing to consider: if your plant can grow to a large size, would you still want it to be in a huge container? Will it fit in your space once the plant is mature?


Keep in mind how easily moveable the container is and your physical limitations. Even large and weighty containers may seem doable upon purchase— but remember the soil and plant that will go within.

If it’s a plant that needs moving indoors during the winter, will it be easy to move? Will you be physically capable of carrying it to move it? If this is a concern, you can opt for large but lightweight planters versus anything heavy.

Color & Material

These two details are important when considering the needs of a plant. When it comes to color, black containers or planters kept outdoors are far more suitable for heat-loving plants since the black will absorb heat. That said, it may not be the right idea for a damp and cool-loving plant that prefers something white or lighter-colored.

If you are looking for potted planters for outdoor use, durable UV-resistant materials like terracotta, wood, or color-glazed ceramic planters will be a better choice. Plastic containers fare well, but when exposed to a lot of sunlight and UV, they may crack and break down even over a short period of time.


A critical but sometimes overlooked part when choosing a container or planter is considering its drainage capabilities, as each plant will have different needs. The more drainage holes at the bottom of a container, the better it will be for most annual plants (like potted vegetables or flowers) or even succulents and cactus that don’t like water logging. Drainage is less of a concern if you’ve got plants that don’t mind wet feet— such as marsh plants. So, detail while doing your planter shopping!

Ready to Pick Your Planter

To quickly summarize, when selecting the best planter for your new green friends, remember to consider their size, weight, color & material, and drainage. Now that you know the key components to look out for, check out our nursery page to view our sample photos of pottery selections we carry in-store. Visit us at our multi-acre garden center at Payless Hardware, Rockery, and Nursery!

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