Oversized Designer Planters that pack a PUNCH

Garden Methuselah
I’ve always loved the glamour and “life” an oversized planter gives a space…whether used indoors or outdoors.  There is something exclusive and luxurious about pulling the verdant pleasures and treasures of a garden into a setting (indoors or outdoors) and controling the how, why and where of the colour, flair and impact they create.  Planters are exceptionally great room and garden accessories because they supply height and depth to an area or fill in an awkward spot and allow you to create bursts of controlled and focused colour into your Design.    However, when selecting a garden container make sure to consider your climate.  What is considered an all year planter in Los Angeles is NOT an all year planter in Toronto or Halifax.  For example, while Terra Cotta or Clay oversized pots are beautiful, they are fragile and WILL crack or split when temperatures dip close to or below zero. As an alternative in areas with actual 4 Season weather select resistant resin or fiberglass pots, which mimic the look of limestone and fired clay but won’t chip, fade, or corrode. These materials provide the added benefit of being lightweight which is a lifesaver when you’re repositioning or repotting them (TRUST me on this one).   Another durable option is teak or Spanish Cedar, which are rot-resistant and acquire a lovely patina over time if left to grey (or you can keep them “bristol” by oiling them every few months).  When ordering your oversized pots make sure to take the drainage holes into consideration…does the planter have them…if not can you drill it yourself…do you need a catch tray beneath them depending upon where they are going to be situated.  There are hundreds of thousands of choices for oversized planters and I still ADORE Martha Stewart’s feature on making your own out of light weight concrete shown in her brilliant magazine several years back…but here are a few of my favourite things… (you can hum the song while you peruse the list):

The Carlos Pot by Oly

Aged, visually weighty and a stunning addition to any Garden the Carlos pot has the look and feel of a Minoan Amphora or a Roman cistern, with its bold yet subtle fluting, age-dappled colour and capacious silhouette. While it visually has the look of an archeological find it is in fact made of resin, so it’s much lighter than it looks (if it was stone it would take 4 BURLY men to move it).  I would LOVE to see a pair of them flanking  a swimming pool with palm trees or spiral cedars, or nestled into the landscape with a cascade of Oleander and grey green vines.

Height: 28″ diameter: 39.5″ material: cast resin in limestone finish

The Leon Brickmaker Planter from Mecox Gardens

This oversized planter (it is massive in person) is a magnificent mixture of rusticity and old school glamour, perfect for a tradtional garden or an eclectic design that requires a bold statement to give it visual and conceptual depth.  The planter is fashioned from textured reclaimed hardwood and conjures the feeling of an old world crate which is then juxtaposed with the Gilded Age look and feeling of the iron lion’s-head ring pulls and feet.  I would love to see this in a repeated series along a terrace or a pair flanking a natural stone walkway, planted with dwarf flowering trees, citrus trees or for the more Vita Sackville-West gardens, obelisk-shaped boxwood to enhance its stately form of both the planter and the planting material.

Height: 36″ width: 24″ depth: 24″ material: azobe wood and iron

 The Vazo Methusela by Seattle based Rotoluxe

Modern, conceptual, bold and very dramatic, the Vazo Methusela  makes a very big statement through size and visual impact.  At 44? high and 48? diameter, this giant lighted pot works indoors or out, in public or private spaces giving a Hollywood glam feeling. Rotoluxe focuses on clean contemporary design, unusual lighting aspects and is environmentally friendly. The products contain recycled post industrial consumer plastics and are, themselves, 100% recyclable. They are powered by a low wattage CFL or battery powered LED source and are available in 13 colors.  I can see them looking spectacular on a large raised terrace, flanking a pool lit at night (especially in the natural or white) or lining a long garden walk set in a series to give a modern repetition.

 The VAS ONE Designed by Luisa Bocchietto for Serralunga

Beyond oversized, Vas One is the Titanic of garden planters and is guaranteed to make a vivid and bold statement in your garden as it was originally designed for public spaces. Vas One is 4 feet high and there is actually a larger version called Big-Bo that stands 6 feet high. The vases are made from rotationally moulded polyethylene and are finished with a diamond strength gloss urethane finish that is incredibly strong and lightweight.  I would love to see a grouping of them in various sizes on the edge of a large terrace or patio…or set into a garden as a surprise that you come across almost like an Alice in Wonderland concept.

The Avalon Ball Planter by Design Within Reach
Expressive, modern, organic and sensual…The Avalon Planter  has an elegant mix of traditional and modern and is crafted from fiberstone but finished in an earthy natural patina.  Fiberstone is made from combining stone dust and resin and coating it with a layer of fiberglass. The result is a planter that’s lightweight and easy to move, but that will stand up to the outdoor elements without cracking or flaking and will maintain its colour through years of sun and rain.  I can see these in bold groupings with juicy coloured annuals pouring over their edges or filled with a variety of fountain grasses and succulents.  For more about DWR check out my feature on them.
  1. Candice QuinnCandice Quinn05-16-2011

    LOVE the self light planters…imagining them on my deck. Thanks for info