Pros and Cons of 5 Types of Plant Pots

Terra cotta plant potsThere are a lot of different kinds of plant pots and containers available. Plastic plant pots are great for apartment gardens on balconies because they're cheap, light-weight, durable and attractive. You can get creative with the plant containers you use - they don't need to come from your local garden shop.


You can use anything as a plant pot as long as it holds potting soil and can have drainage holes drilled into it. The following are the types of plant containers you can use in your apartment garden.

  1. The terra cotta plant pot. Terra cotta plant pots are beautiful and relatively inexpensive, but they may be too heavy for balconies, crack in freezing temperatures, break if knocked over or allow too much water to evaporate from the soil during hot weather. Some apartment gardeners will purchase plastic plant pots that look like terra cotta in order to get the best of both worlds.
  2. The nursery plant pot. Budget gardeners and those who want to recycle can use the black plastic plant pots from the garden shop nursery instead of buying more expensive containers. Just remember that the the color black attracts heat, and a black plant pot can make plant roots hot, which can kill your container plants.
  3. The metal plant pot. These interesting and aesthetically pleasing plant pots are often a cheap alternative to buying new containers. These plant pots are shiny (when new) and may blind you when sunlight hits them, and they can leave rust stains underneath (when aged).
  4. The plastic plant pot. Plastic plant pots are cheap, available in many shapes and sizes, and will help retain potting soil moisture (while also allowing for drainage). The best part is that they’re lightweight, which is important for balcony gardens and for apartment gardeners who move often.
  5. The recycled plant pot. Coffee cans, plastic bottles and even old shoes can become plant pots. Find items and get creative! Use anything that can withstand the elements, have holes drilled into the bottom, is big enough for your plant. Also think about if the plant pot may have sharp edges that could cut someone in the garden, and make sure its shape won’t make repotting plants difficult in the future.

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