Planter boxes offer a unique way to both spruce up your garden and grow delicious vegetables, fruits, flowers, and other plants. With so many choices, deciding which type of plant to pick can be overwhelming. Luckily, there are some amazing plants that thrive in planter boxes.

If you have a spot blessed with great sunshine, you’ll have many options when it comes to choosing which plants are right for the job. Vegetables such as tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, squash, beans, and radishes work wonders when grown in planter boxes and bring color and extra flavor to any mealtime.

For those who prefer something more leafy and luscious without sacrificing the flavor – lettuce varieties such as arugula, romaine, or spinach are true celebrations. Plus, nothing is more beautiful than enjoying a summer filled with flowers. Read on to learn more details about it.

Here is What to Grow in Planter Box

1. Lettuce

Lettuce is an incredibly versatile plant that can be added to almost any dish. Not only is it delicious, but it’s also incredibly nutritious too. Lettuce is high in fiber and manganese, which helps support a healthy digestive tract and can help regulate blood sugar levels.

Additionally, lettuce has antioxidant compounds as well as vitamins A, and C. Planting lettuce is very straightforward; you should sow the seeds immediately after your last frost all the way through the summer and early fall, making it perfect for gardens of all sizes. With a 5-gallon planter box or larger, you can easily grow enough lettuce for meals throughout the season.

Lettuce can be enjoyed in myriad ways, too; it’s perfect in a leafy green salad with add-ins like tomatoes and cucumbers, used as a topping on sandwiches for some crunch, or even cooked with some types of meat and poultry dishes.

The possibilities are nearly endless – so get creative with how you use this versatile vegetable. Lettuce will provide an abundance of nutrition and flavor as well as help support sustainable gardening methods that benefit us all.

2. Asian Greens

Asian greens are one of the most nutritious foods and can be grown year-round in a 5-gallon planter box. These greens contain vitamins A, B, C, E, and K and can be eaten in salads or cooked on their own. For example, bok choy is an Asian green that has a crunchy texture and sweet flavor that pairs well with beef or pork dishes. It’s also great as part of oriental stir fry and very easy to cook.

Mustard greens are another popular Asian green that can be harvested young for milder flavored salads or left to mature for savory soups and entrees. The sharp peppery notes are balanced when cooked with other flavorful ingredients like cumin and garlic.

Mustard greens also deliver a hefty amount of antioxidants as well as fiber which helps to improve digestion. For optimal planting conditions, these vegetables should be planted in the early spring before the last frost hits so that they may reach their full growth potential throughout the season.

3. Herbs

Herbs are a great way to add flavor, color, and nutrition to your meals. They’re also incredibly versatile and can be used in many different dishes. Herbs can be grown in a 5-gallon planter box, making them perfect for smaller gardens or patios.

Basil is the most popular herb and is easy to grow. It’s a great addition to any Italian dish and can be used in salads, pasta, sauces, and more. Basil has anti-inflammatory properties which can help to reduce swelling in the body.

Rosemary is another versatile herb that is easy to grow and adds an unmistakable flavor to dishes like soups, stews, roasted veggies, and even grilled meats. It has antioxidant properties and can help to reduce oxidative stress.

4. Onions

Onions are a great choice for growing in a planter box. They don’t require a lot of space and can be grown in virtually any type of container. Onions prefer full sun and well-drained soil, so it’s important to ensure your planter box has adequate drainage holes. Planting onions in the fall will result in larger bulbs come springtime. Start with sets of small onions and plant them about 2-3 inches apart. Onions are a great source of manganese, vitamin C, and B6 and can be used in dishes to add flavor or be eaten raw.

5. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are a great addition to any garden, making for a delicious, nutritious snack or meal accompaniment. Tomatoes can be planted in planter boxes at least 5 gallons in size and should be placed in an area that receives direct sunlight for 6-8 hours per day.

The soil should remain consistently moist but not overly wet for optimal growth. Tomatoes provide many essential nutrients like vitamin C, potassium, and fiber. They can be eaten raw or cooked to make a variety of sauces, soups, and stews.

6. Peppers

Peppers of all colors and sizes can be grown in a 5-gallon planter box. This includes bell peppers, jalapenos, habaneros, and many more varieties that bring flavor to salads, soups, stews, and more. Peppers are an excellent source of Vitamin C, A, and E as well as B vitamins like folate and thiamin.

They can be harvested at any stage of growth, but the longer they stay on the vine, the sweeter they will become. They prefer full sun and consistently moist soil, so make sure your planter box has plenty of drainage holes to avoid root rot.

7. Asparagus

Asparagus is a delightful and nutritious vegetable for any planter box. With its rich flavor and pleasing texture, asparagus makes a perfect side dish for any entree. Packed full of vitamins A, C, E, K, folate, copper, and iron, asparagus provides essential nutrients for your diet.

The best part about this superfood is that it can be planted immediately after the last spring frost in containers of 5-gallon planters or bigger.

When preparing asparagus for consumption, you can enjoy boiling it for four to five minutes as a simple side dish with a pat of butter. You can also roast or grill it to create a delicious nutty flavor before adding herbs or spices.

Asparagus makes an especially tasty teriyaki stir fry when coupled with some fresh ginger and garlic. Regardless of how you prepare it, Asparagus will make a hearty addition to anyone’s planter box garden.

8. Carrots

Carrots are a great addition to any planter box. Not only do they add a sweet and crunchy flavor to meals, but they are also packed full of essential vitamins and minerals. Carrots can be planted in spring or fall and prefer moist soil with full sun exposure.

Plant the seeds about 1/4 inch deep and keep them consistently watered for optimal growth. Carrots can be harvested when they are about 1-2 inches in diameter and enjoyed raw or cooked as a side dish.

9. Lettuce

Lettuce is a versatile vegetable grown in planter boxes of any size. It comes in many varieties, including romaine, iceberg, and butterhead. Lettuce prefers full sun and moist soil, making it an ideal plant for planter box gardens.

You can harvest lettuce leaves as desired or cut off the entire head at once. Lettuce is a great source of vitamins A and K, folate, iron, and calcium. Enjoy it in salads or sandwiches for a tasty and nutritious meal.

10. Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi is a nutritious and increasingly popular vegetable in the United States. It is a member of the Brassica family, which also includes collard greens, kale, and turnips. Kohlrabi is high source of Thiamin, Folate, Magnesium, and Phosphorous. Its sweet taste and crunchy texture make it a favorite among home cooks.

Kohlrabi plants can be planted after the last frost when the soil temperature reaches at least 65 degrees Fahrenheit for two weeks. The plant should be planted in well-drained soil rich in organic matter in an area with full sun exposure.

A 5-gallon planter box can grow more than enough kohlrabi to feed a family of four over several weeks if cared for properly. With olive oil and herbs added while cooking, this vegetable serves wonderfully as a side dish or as part of your main meal.

For those looking to change up their vegetable routine or add more nutrition to their diet without compromising on flavor, look no further than kohlrabi.

Frequently Asked Questions [FAQs]

1. What can you put in a planter box Besides plants?

Other items in a planter box include rocks, stones, and other inorganic materials like bark chips or gravel. These can create an attractive ground cover or add texture and color to the planter box. You could also consider adding pottery, figurines, and other decorative items for a more creative look. If you have larger objects that won’t fit in the box, you can place them around the outside to create a more interesting design.

2. What type of plants are best for planter boxes?

The best types of plants for planter boxes depend on the climate, the size of the box, and your gardening goals. Generally speaking, most vegetables (e.g., asparagus, carrots, lettuce, and kohlrabi) and herbs (e.g., sage, thyme, oregano, basil, and chives) will do well in planter boxes. Consider planting drought-tolerant plants such as succulents if you are unable to water frequently. Flowers such as marigolds and petunias will also add a splash of color to your planter box garden.

3. What should I put in my planter?

There are many natural materials that you can use around the house or garden. For seasonal planters who report frequently, pine cones, wood chips, leaves, and sticks can be used. However, these materials will decompose over time.

4. Do you put soil directly in the planter?

Straight garden soil should not be used in containers. Growing plants in containers with garden soil alone is impossible due to its lack of drainage, aeration, moisture control, and nutrients. It is difficult to drain water from containers when garden soil or topsoil is used alone.

5. What vegetables grow fast in pots?

Among the vegetables that thrive in containers are nightshades, such as tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, and eggplant. Some of the easiest vegetables to grow in pots are fast-growing crops, such as peas and lettuce.


There are many vegetables and herbs that make great additions to planter boxes. Depending on the climate, box size, and gardening goals. Additionally, you can add other elements like rocks or decorative items to enhance the appearance of your planter box. All those things will make your planter box stand out.

About the Author

Virginia E. Hayes is a gardening enthusiast who loves to write about gardening tools, safety issues, and ways to keep gardens clean and safe. With her vast experience in gardening, she provides valuable insights and tips to help fellow gardening enthusiasts to enhance their gardening experience. Her passion for gardening and writing has made her a sought-after author in the gardening community.

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