Colorful Planting Ideas: Naptime Makeover

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It been some time since my last Naptime Makeover, but it’s time to make the most of those sleeping babies. The Twins are down to one nap a day now, but it’s a good two hour event, so that leaves plenty of time to get stuck into some colorful planting ideas. It’s that time of year when everyone in the northern hemisphere starts exploring their garden again… unless you live in Arizona like me, and in that case you’re into pool terriority. Yes, it is officially 100°F today on Cinco de Mayo, so it’s time to splash about, party and lounge poolside. I had a good tidy up and weeding session earlier in the week, but our poolside seating is still lacking a punch of color. I needed a little inspiration before I headed to the garden centre…


Although I love gardening, since we moved from the UK to Arizona, the knowledge I had built through experience with my English garden felt like it was useless in my new desert habitat. I swapped rambling roses and gooseberry bushes for bougainvillea and cacti. I’m no planting expert, but it’s a hobby I really enjoy, and I’ve found some great resources through Monrovia that help make planning and buying the perfect plants for your garden easy. They even have a new ‘Grow Beautifully’ blog which I’ve had a good dig through to consider colorful planting ideas for my patio spruce up. There are many different ways you can bring splashes of color to your yard, so before you get started consider some options:

5 Colorful Planting Ideas:

Traditional Flower Beds: What I love about good sized flower beds is you can mix heights, colors and textures to create the ultimate planting backdrop. It’s quite the skill, I’m not sure I’ve nailed it yet, but it’s fun to browse for plants that compliment each other in the garden centre or online. I’m one of those people that get asked if they need help a lot in the garden centre, because I move pots about repeatedly, standing back with a confused look on my face. 

Trees: In a sea of green, a colorful tree can make all the difference. Our neighbor in England had a Japanese Red Maple, and I was always eyeing it up mid summer when spring flowers had finished for the year and we were left with only green planting.

Decorative Pots: What I like about pots is they are easy to weed. I find flower beds higher maintenance, although mulch or pebbles helps. I also love that they’re mobile to change up the look quickly. The pots I’m filling today used to be along the pool fence, but I’m moving them poolside. Not only can colorful flowers create an instant splash of color to the centre of a patio, the pot itself also brings color and style to your yard. Don’t be afraid of mixing pots for an welcoming, eclectic look like this beautiful garden below.

colorful planting ideas monrovia
Source: Monrovia Grow Beautifully Blog

Hanging Baskets: If you’ve read my post on hanging house plants you’ll know I’m a fan of keeping plants out of reach of children and pets… neither can be trusted! Hanging baskets are the perfect way to bring color to your patio, especially if you have a covered area as they can run along the edge of the canopy.

Vines & Climbers: What I love about climbers is they cover unsightly structures or divides. In England we had a huge scented climbing rose that covered a trellis that separated the pretty front half with the practical back half with the shed, greenhouse and veg patch. When we moved into our house in Arizona, we immediately installed a safety fence to divide the pool half from the lawn half, and now I plan to grow a climber to improve the unsightly steel bars. Useful and pretty, you can’t go wrong with that!

Colorful Planting Ideas: Naptime Makeover

We finally got round to buying ourselves patio furniture last summer and were so excited about sitting on it, we never really thought about dressing it up further. But the poolside patio is looking a little sad and beige, and it’s calling out for a splash of color. This truly was a naptime makeover… a small project you can tackle while babies sleep – instant satisfaction. Pots are an easy, almost lazy, way of bringing colorful planting ideas to your yard, I even had time for a cup of tea and take some photos before the boys woke up.


This is the sweet spot… although you need ice tea today. It’s 100F!!

I went for the lazy option and popped to my local Lowe’s in the morning to browse the Monrovia plants and flowers. If you’re more organized, and want to make sure you find the perfect plant for your pots or beds, you can search the Monrovia shop site for what is available in your region, and they will ship the plants for free to your local garden centre for pick up, such a great idea!


These Asiatic Lilies are bringing just the colorful detail I was looking for to the poolside, and they can handle a little sun so hopefully they’ll do just fine in my pot.


And you know I couldn’t leave without a cactus, right? Is it sensible to plant a cactus in a bathing suit zone?

Let me know if you have any spring/summer planting projects on the horizon, and do have a browse of what Monrovia have to offer at your local Lowe’s. They also have a lot to offer online, including their shop, blog, and even a newsletter. Get stuck into a naptime makeover, whatever it may be, you really feel like you’ve achieved something for the day!


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About the author

Katherine is an electrochemist, hiking enthusiast, and family lifestyle blogger. As a mom of three, including twins, she enjoys DIY, travel, and eating good food. British born, Katherine moved to the US in 2014, and now called Las Vegas home.

15 thoughts on “Colorful Planting Ideas: Naptime Makeover”

  1. Such great ideas! And gorgeous pics, too! I’m alreading planting flowers (mostly dahlias and fruit trees this season). I want to plant some cacti since I have lots of seeds but I just haven’t decided where to plant those. Thanks for sharing these great planting ideas! I wish I had your English garden knowledge though 🙂

    • Thanks Andrea, I felt like I was only just getting going in England so starting from scratch is a little frustrating! Good luck with the cacti, I’ve never tried growing them from seed!

  2. Lovely! Adding a bit a greenery always lifts a room or area. I love the plant on the coffee table. Succulents are my favourite cause they are so hard to kill. lol

  3. I feel your pain! We are from Hawaii, and we moved to Arizona for 5 years, had to relearn everything!! My favorite though are the blooming cacti, so pretty, and so different from everything else out there!

    • Yes, despite getting used to torching plants on a regular basis, I do adore the cacti! Hawaii to Arizona must have been quite the change, I’ve never been to Hawaii but miss the beach! ?


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