Best Plants for Shallow Pots

Best Plants for Shallow Pots | Plants That Grow Well in Shallow Pots

Don’t know which plants to grow in shallow pots? We have listed below herbs, vegetables, flowers, succulents, and cacti that are ideal plants for shallow pots!

Managing plants in large containers is a demanding task, when it comes to taking care of the plant or moving the container. By choosing shallow containers, not only you’ll save up space, but you can also relocate the container without much difficulty. Check out the best plants for shallow pots by going through this post!

Ideally, succulents and cacti are best for shallow containers as most succulents have a shallow root system. Some flowering plants such as zinnia, pansies, and petunias also among the best plants for shallow pots. Basil, rosemary, thyme, and other such herbs and vegetables such as lettuce and radishes are also plants for shallow pots.

Herbs for Shallow Pots

Almost all herbs do well in shallow containers as herbs don’t have deep roots. A few of the best picks are listed below.


rosemary plant close-up

It’s a fragrant herb used in the production of perfumes, aromatherapy, and many culinary dishes. The depth of the pot can lie anywhere between 6 to 8 inches for optimum root development. Make sure that the pot has drainage holes.

Also Read: Can Cats Eat Rosemary?


Basil in a pot

Like rosemary, this herb also belongs to the mint family and is used in various culinary dishes. Basil needs good air circulation for proper growth, so it needs 12 to 18 inches between seedlings. The good thing is that even though you’ll require a wide pot, the pot’s depth still needs to be around 8-10 inches.


Mint plant in a shallow pot

It’s a popular herb that includes peppermint and spearmint and is recognized for the cool and minty aftertaste it leaves in the mouth. Pot of the depth of 10-12 inches provides enough space for the roots to develop. Keep in mind that a much shallower pot can cause roots to come out from the bottom through drainage holes and thus adversely affect growth.


Oregano in a shallow pot

Pizza lovers out there will already be familiar with this herb as it’s commonly used for seasoning pizza. Apart from that, oregano is used to add flavor to many other dishes. It’s the perfect herb for your shallow pot that you can enjoy on your patio or balcony.

Vegetables for Shallow Containers

Although vegetables require space to grow, some vegetables grow well in shallow pots. Infact some of the root vegetables also do well in shallow pots. Here a few to name.


close- up of lettuce

Lettuce is a popular leafy green used in salads and soups and is commonly found in burgers, sandwiches, and wraps. As the roots are shallow, you’ll need a pot around 6 inches deep. The width of the pot will depend on the quantity of harvest you need.


onion in a pot

The pots’ depth for onions will depend on the weather you plan to harvest onion bulbs or scallions. Onion bulbs need a space of 3-4 inches around them, whereas green spring onions will need more space around 8-10 inches. Go for a pot that’s several feet wide so that you get a bountiful harvest for your hard work.


spinach in a basket

This leafy green grows easily in shallow pots (6-8 inches) and is ideal for beginners. Sprinkle the seeds over the soil and tap them lightly and water. Seeds will germinate within a week and ready for harvest in no time.

Also Read: How to Grow Spinach in a Pot

Swiss Chard

Swiss Chard in a pot

It’s delicious, nutritious, and if that wasn’t enough, swiss chard is also ornamental. It grows well in the shallow pot (8-10 inches) as the swiss chard’s root system isn’t deep. Growing Swiss chard in a container will ensure a fresh, bountiful harvest for the salad bowls, soups, and other dishes.


Radish in a pot

Some of you might be surprised to find radishes here as it’s a root vegetable, but the good news is that radishes don’t grow much deep and do well in shallow pots (6-8 inches deep). Radish is also a fast-growing vegetable and will be ready for harvest in  50 to 65 days, depending on the cultivar.

Flowers for Shallow Pots

Having flowering pots in-home or office is aesthetically appealing and uplifts the mood as well. Apart from that, there are some flowers which are fragrant and make the surrounding air smell amazing.


petunias on the windowsill

The bright and cheerful petunias bloom in springs, with Grandiflora petunias being the most popular petunia cultivar. The pot’s depth will depend on the variety and can lie anywhere between 6 to 18 inches. So for shallow pots, go for petunias that don’t have a deep root system.


pansies in a pot

This brilliant flower is a perfect choice for both fall and spring gardens. The flower sports many hues and patterns and so you’ll never get bored of it. Most pansies will do well in pots that are 4 to 6 inches deep and 12 inches wide. Apart from containers, pansies are also grown in borders and as ground cover.


lavender in a pot

It’s an herb whose flowers are highly fragrant and come in a vibrant shade of purple. The oil extracted from lavender is used in aromatherapy and has other medicinal uses as well. The ideal pot is 12-16 inches, but you can go for more shallow pots during the initial growing period. You can transplant the plant once it overgrows the pot & here’s how you can plant Lavender in Pots!


zinnia in a pot

It’s an annual flowering plant and very popular among gardeners as it grows quickly and blooms heavily. The daisy-like flower heads come in various colors and shapes and bloom profusely in the full sun. Zinnias come in many sizes, and you can plant small-sized zinnia in a pot as small as 6 inches in size.

Succulents and Cacti for Shallow Pots

Succulents and cacti are other categories of plants that’ll grow well in pots. In fact, the lack of care and space requirement for succulents and cacti has made them a popular choice for home and office decors. Many cultivars of Aloe, Haworthia, Jade, Sedum, and Barrel cacti have a shallow root system and do well in shallow pots. Many succulents can survive in shade or low-light and thus are the best indoor plants for shallow pots. Quick note all succulents are cacti, but not all cacti are succulents!

Below we enlist some of our favorite cacti and succulents for shallow containers.

  • Aloes
  • Panda Plant
  • Pincushion Cactus
  • Roseum Plant
  • Zebra Plant
  • Barrel Cacti
  • Hen and Chicks
  • Lithops (Living Stone)
  • Blossfeldia
  • Echeveria minima
  • Little Warty’s

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