Then a friend mentioned a project she had seen on Pinterest...a stack of plain old terra cotta pots, filled with plants. It seemed like a simple idea, so we decided to give it a try. In the end, they turned out fantastically...and we spent less than $100 total, including all the plants and soil!
The finished product!
The project was simple enough. We bought four sizes of terra cotta pots. The bottom one was an azalea pot...shorter in proportion then the others, and made for a great base. We wanted the pots to match our black shutters and door, so a quick coat of spray paint did the trick.
Starting at the bottom, we filled the pot with dirt, stopping a few inches shy of the top, and tamped it down by hand. We then stacked the next pot, pressing it into the dirt below until it was centered, level, and stable. Then just repeated the process until we got to the top.
Then we filled the top with spikey decorative grasses and coleus, and filled in the levels below with creeping jenny, impatiens, and begonias. They filled in beautifully, and are now so full that the pots themselves are practically invisible...just a cascade of blooms and greenery. One thing we wish we had done was put the planters on some sort of casters. It would be nice to be able to move them to clean underneath. Otherwise, they turned out great! (Just pretend the welcome mat is turned the right way, won't you?)