Fall in Central Oregon may mean the end of bright bulbs and hanging flower baskets, but there are still ample ways to keep a colorful patio year-round, such as styling with containers. Even in cold fall and winter months, decorating outdoor spaces with vibrant pottery and native plants can make them feel alive. In the high desert, frost-proof pots — which can survive low temperatures — are a must have. Pots that are not fired at the right temperature are likely to crack and fall apart in winter weather. But from there, the world’s your oyster, according to Mose Lenowitz, owner of Pottery House in Tumalo, which specializes in pots for year-round use. Reflecting on the growing pottery industry, Lenowitz comments that while being cooped up in homes because of the pandemic, people had a lot of time to look at what they had inside — and outside. Popular pottery styles, Lenowitz says, include the mid-century modern look with little decor, along with matte blacks, silver rock and crunchy basalt glazes that match the surrounding volcanic environment. Decorators may use two rustic texture pots to flank a doorway, or mix and match a group of three beside an outdoor fireplace. When it’s time to say goodbye to your colorful summer garden, a slew of native Deschutes plants are ready to dress up your patio for the coming seasons. According to Lenowitz, “You can create life without actually having life in the pot.” He recommends filling pots with native plants like red willow, which grows on the banks of the Deschutes River and can be found in nurseries. Lenowitz also suggested filling pots with white birch bark, vibrant mosses or native tall grasses, which can be cut down and survive the winter. Stylists may embrace the fall season and experiment with color and texture by filling brown- and red-colored pots with branches and autumn foliage. Another idea, Lenowitz says, is to pot dwarf conifers — which offer a mixture of green hues year-round — and light them up from the bottom as another avenue for lighting, versus simply using string lighting across a patio or between trees.
Whether you choose to stylize minimal white pots across your deck, or build a vertical garden on your terrace or fence, take this season to brighten up your outdoor spaces for the months to come. Pottery.House