Peppers, Celosia and Calibrachoa
There’s no rule against growing ornamental plants alongside edibles. It’s a good way to augment hardworking plants with color and beauty. Above, ‘Tomahawk’ pepper is joined by ‘Dragon’s Breath’ celosia and a pink calibrachoa, sometimes called Million Bells.
Peppers, Coleus, Marigold and Viola
Ornamental peppers, such as this ‘Sedona Sun Yellow’ variety, are grown more for their looks than their taste. As colorful as they are, you can make an even bigger splash by adding companions such as coleus, marigold and viola.
Kale and Sweet Alyssum
Grown as an ornamental or edible, kale has attractive foliage. Use it as a backdrop for diminutive flowers such as the purple sweet alyssum (Lobularia maritima) seen here.
Eggplant, Viola, Onion and Bok Choy
This container means business—everything in it is edible, even the viola flowers. But why eat the blooms when they echo so nicely off of the purple eggplant? Onions add a wispy texture to the arrangement, while the bright foliage of bok choy really stands out.
Basil and Calibrachoa
Basil is a natural in a planter because it has bright foliage and a pleasing shape that is easily kept compact with regular harvesting. There are even boxwood-shape varieties available. This is a standard sweet basil paired with two varieties of calibrachoa for contrast.
Tomato and Angelonia
Some compact varieties of cherry tomatoes don’t even need staking. That makes them perfect for container growing. This is ‘Sweet N Neat’ tomato, which grows just 10 inches tall and 8 inches wide. It even leaves room for a companion, in this case white angelonia.
Basil, Petunia and Calibrachoa
This charming basil makes a nice backdrop for a light yellow petunia and purple calibrachoa. The flower colors play off of each other—by themselves, they wouldn’t have the same visual impact.
Eggplant and Torenia
With large leaves and an upright habit, eggplant needs a sprawling companion. Enter a white-flowered torenia. This no-hassle annual will grow to fill available space—without overtaking the eggplant.
You can grow plenty of vegetables and herbs in containers—paired with other edibles or with ornamental plants. It’s your choice.
Explore more edible garden ideas: