30 Best Architectural Plants to Grow in Containers

Ralph Astley is a retired gardener from Philadelphia who specializes in outdoor plants and trees. With years of hands-on experience, Ralph not only cares for a diverse range of outdoor flora but also shares his extensive knowledge through well-written articles and social media posts. A trusted authority in arboriculture, he's committed to helping the community grow healthier, more robust gardens.
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Here are the Best Architectural Plants to Grow in Containers that you can add to your home and garden for a dimensional appeal!

If you want to add a character to your home and garden, then here are some of the Best Architectural Plants to Grow in Containers for a bold look.

Have a look at the best shade-loving flowers for containers here

Best Architectural Plants to Grow in Containers

1. Agave

Best Architectural Plants to Grow in Containers

Botanical Name: Agave

Agaves are an excellent choice for adding dimension and character to colorful patio pots and home entrances. Smaller species like agave colorata and agave bracteosa are especially suitable for growing in pots.

Here are the best types of agaves you can grow

2. Yucca

Botanical Name: Yucca

A mainstay in contemporary gardens, yucca is one of the best architectural plants with evergreen spiky leaves. Being drought resistant, they are easy to grow indoors as well.

3. Giant Elephant Ear

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Botanical Name: Colocasia gigantea ‘Thailand Giant’

When it comes to stunning architectural plants, the Giant Elephant Ear takes the cake! This large tuber with tropical-looking foliage stands tall at 8-feet and is a worthy addition to any shade garden.

Check out these places where you’ll find free gardening containers!

4. Sea Holly

Botanical Name: Eryngium

The sea holly adds a spiky texture and color to your patio pots and perennial garden. Its distinctive thistle-like stems are drought-tolerant, making them perfect for rock gardens.

5. Snake Plant

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Botanical Name: Dracaena trifasciata

This humble and low-maintenance plant is valued for its thick, sword-shaped leaves that are sometimes dark green or sometimes accented with lighter green borders.

6. Succulents


Succulents come in a variety of shapes and sizes, making them perfect for everyone! You can plant colorful ones in tall and big planters to add a vivid dimension to the landscape!

7. Ornamental Grass

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Prized for their unique texture, height, and color, ornamental grasses are a wonderful addition to any landscape. As they tend to get pretty invasive, they are well-suited for container culture.

Here are the best ornamental grasses you can grow

8. Juniper

Botanical Name: Juniperus

If you live in an arid area and want to add a quick-growing evergreen to your home, consider the juniper. This tree bears foliage of intriguing textures and colors, including different shades of green, golden, bronze, purple, silver, and gray.

9. Yew

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Botanical Name: Taxus baccata

Yews are aesthetically pleasing, slow-growing conifers that can be grown as a container centerpiece or privacy screen. If you are looking for a gorgeous privacy screen, consider the English yew.

10. Honeybush

Botanical Name: Cyclopia

Native to South Africa, Honeybush is an attractive perennial shrub with icy green, frond-like leaves and sprays of burgundy flowers that lure swarms of bees and birds in search of nectar.

11. Cordyline

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Botanical Name: Cordyline

Cordylines are best suited for the tropics and are hardy enough to survive temperatures as low as 15 F. Use large planters and pair them with brightly colored and textured succulents to create a visually dynamic and elegant container garden!

12. Horsetail

Botanical Name: Equisetum arvense

Horsetail is a perennial, water-loving plant that is typically grown to add an edgy look to a landscape. While it grows quickly to about 4-feet tall, it also spreads underground if not contained.

13. New Zealand Flax

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Botanical Name: Phormium

A hardy little perennial with bold sword-like leaves, New Zealand Flax is adapted to mild climates. In decorative pots, it becomes a wonderful focal point.

14. Bamboo

Botanical Name: Bambusa vulgaris

Famous for taking over gardens with their invasive underground rhizomes, bamboos are a finicky plant to grow in containers. They demand root space and lots of care, but with the right variety, big containers, and potting soil, it should be easy.

15. Firecracker

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Botanical Name: Russelia equisetiformis

This firecracker plant looks smashing with its green, needle-like foliage and red flowers. Grow it in tall planters on the patio for the best display.

16. Bougainvillea

Botanical Name: Bougainvillea

Though it is famous as a climber, it will look equally good in large containers. Keep it trimmed or provide support so that it can climb and showcase its fantastic flowers!

17. Cactus

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Botanical Name: Cactaceae

Don’t think that cacti are only meant for small spaces and pots. They also come in tall varieties that you can grow in architectural planters for a dramatic look.

18. Plumeria


Botanical Name: Plumeria

Also popular as frangipani, this plant gives a mini tree-like appearance, making it perfect for large containers. Its fragrant flowers will also add a stunning dimension to the garden.

19. Hydrangea

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Botanical Name: Hydrangea

The colorful and large Hydrangea flowers are a must-have in any garden. The plant will be more than happy to thrive in large pots, filling them with magnificent blooms in no time!

20. Cypress


Botanical Name: Cupressus

Coming in many colors, shapes, and textures, Cypress in pots can be a wonderful addition to a garden. Grow it in straight or staggered rows for the best display.

21. Palms

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Botanical Name: Arecaceae

Before you plan to grow palm in pots, remember that not all palms do well in containers. Chinese Fan, Mexican Blue, Bismarck, and Lipstick Palms are the best ones you can grow. See more palms here!

22. Clematis


Botanical Name: Clematis

One large planter and clematis are all you need on a patio for stunning decor. ‘Betty Corning,’ ‘Black Prince,’ and ‘Pink Champagne are best for containers!

23. Rose

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Botanical Name: Rosa

One of the most versatile plants on this list, roses come in so many colors that there’s one for everyone. You can choose to grow climbing or tall variety, depending upon your requirements.

24. Boxwood

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Botanical Name: Buxus

This pretty green shrub will be more than happy to add that rich green color to your garden all year round. Grow them together and trim them in a round shape for a beautiful display.

25. Red Twig Dogwood

Botanical Name: Cornus sericea

With a tall layering of prostrate stems, this plant is a must-have on a patio or a front yard. Pair it with industrial planters to make it look more appealing.

26. Coral Bells

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Botanical Name: Heuchera

Coral bells is THE plant of choice if you live in a colder climate. It will be more than happy to dwell in containers while looking fantastic all the time!

27. Chinese Fringe Flower


Botanical Name: Loropetalum chinense

The dark maroon-red foliage of Chinese fringe flower looks awesome in light-colored tall planters. Add multiple containers on a walkway to add a solid appeal to your garden.

28. Thuja

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Botanical Name: Thuja occidentalis

This evergreen plant is the best way to add a green element to any space. You can also trim it in various shapes and sizes!

29. Hosta

Botanical Name: Hosta

The variegated foliage of the Hosta can add a stunning look to any landscape. For the best display, pair it up with flowers and grow it in a large container.

30. Japanese Banana Tree

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Botanical Name: Musa basjoo

For containers, you have to go with the Japanese Banana Tree if you want that lush tropical look in your garden. Its enormous paddle-like leaves look great, and the fruits are an added bonus! If you live in a tropical climate, you can grow any variety!


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  1. I do admire to have such flowers in my backyard
    They are wonderful, how can I get the seedlings am here in Uganda


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