Pots, Trash and Goodbyes…

plastic containers

Last week, I decided to get rid my older pots that I have in my front entry.

Years ago, I received these plants from a client who decided that she wanted fancier pots.  So, I took them home, painted them bright colors and installed them by my front entry.

While they have served me well for the past 13 years, they weren’t very big, which limited what I could plant in them.

For quite some time, I have wanted to get some nice, large glazed pots.  I realized that it was finally time to practice what I preach to my clients…

“Choosing colorful, glazed pots is a great way to add color to the landscape.”

So, my husband and I went out searching for three pots for our front entry.

I was thrilled to find all three at our first stop – Home Depot.  The price was good and they even gave us 10% off for a small chip we noticed.  No one will see the chip since it will be on the back side.

I had my plants all selected and was ready to go.

My son, Kai, offered to help.  So I told him to raid the recycle trash can and get an empty milk carton,  soda/water bottles and empty jars.

Kai looked at me like I was a little crazy, but he did as I asked.

He then put them into my new containers…

plastic containers

plastic containers

Can you guess why I had my containers filled with ‘trash’?

I’ll let you know why you’ll want to start collecting plastic containers for your next potting project in my next post…


Today, my daughter, Rachele, is on a plane to Chicago.  She has joined the Navy.

I am so proud and happy for her!

But, I must admit that part of my heart has left with her. 


I remember being sad when I held her by the hand and took her to her first day of preschool.  She had her pretty dress on and her curly hair was short and cute.  I stood outside her classroom for over a half hour, just watching her through the window.  

Then I went home and cried.

I have done my best as her mom and it’s time for her to stretch her wings and make her way into the world. 

This family photo was taken yesterday, just before Rachele left

This family photo was taken yesterday, just before Rachele left.

I just wish it didn’t have to hurt to let her go…

Why Adding Trash to Pots is a Good Idea

Noelle Johnson, aka, 'AZ Plant Lady' is a author, horticulturist, and landscape consultant who helps people learn how to create, grow, and maintain beautiful desert gardens that thrive in a hot, dry climate. She does this through her consulting services, her online class Desert Gardening 101, and her monthly membership club, Through the Garden Gate. As she likes to tell desert-dwellers, "Gardening in the desert isn't hard, but it is different."
6 replies
  1. Patti
    Patti says:

    As a mother of a daughter who has recently ventured away, I know the mixture of hurt and happiness. Your joy will come in the moments when she shares her joy and excitement – and the closeness you share with her will continue because you are that kind of a mother; and in the miles that separate you, she will realize your love for her even more. It does hurt to let go, and I don't know if it gets easier because I, too, am new at this – but I wish you many joyful moments and hope Rachele's future is filled with wonderful, exciting events she can't wait to share with you. All the best to you both!

  2. David Cristiani
    David Cristiani says:

    I gotta see why the pots are filled the way they are…mystery.

    Great remembrances of times with your daughter, and many more to come in this new part of it!

  3. RobinL
    RobinL says:

    Those darned children just insist on growing up and moving away! And I do know why you filled your pot with "trash", so that it's lighter to move and won't use so much soil to fill it.

  4. goodtogrow
    goodtogrow says:

    Good luck to your daughter!

    You use those plastic containers mainly to save money on the amount of soil you need to use – the more plastic, the less soil. They also help with drainage, and are more lightweight than using pieces of clay pots or rocks. Nice work! I thought I was the only one who did that!

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