So you brought home one of your dream plants from your lengthy plant wish list (I’m not the only one with one of those — right??) but now you wonder if it would look even better in a new pot. But size and color are not the only things you need to consider. The material of your pot is an often overlooked element to your plant’s overall look (and health!). Let’s explore some of the pros and cons for today’s most popular pot types.

Grower Pot

Cactus in Grower Pot

The grower pot is the plastic pot that the plant originally grew in. These are just fine for starter plants or to sit in limbo for a few days but it’s not a permanent home. We always recommend continuing to use the grower pot (or repotting to a larger size) and just dropping it in a new decorative pot. This way, it’s easy to switch out the outer pot whenever you want without disturbing or stressing out the plant. For plants that love a good drenching, you can simply remove the plant in its grower pot and run water through to let it drain before placing it back in its outer pot.

Pot covers

Bulbs in Pot Covers

Pot covers are a fun way to dress up plants, but they are also considered just a temporary home. While in the pot cover, be sure to remove the grower pot when watering so water doesn’t build up at the bottom of the pot cover, causing root rot or other consequences of overwatering. If the plant begins to decline at all, consider looking for an alternative pot for the plant and toss the pot cover.


Plastic pots are great if you’re looking for an inexpensive solution and crave an endless variety of colors and designs. Plastic pots range from plain solid colors to fun patterns and even sports team logos. Oftentimes, these pots tend to be very customizable! Any if you’re clumsy, or have a house full or dogs, cats, and/or kids, these won’t shatter when they inevitably get knocked over.

Anthurium in Plastic Deco Pot

The drawbacks? Watch out for overwatering due to plastic being non-porous, but also look out for underwatering, especially if you’re keeping your plant outside in direct sunlight. Plastic, specifically dark-colored plastics, will warm up and dry out the roots much more quickly than other planter options. Be sure to monitor these plants at least every few days to see how they’re doing.


Bonsai Tree in Ceramic Pot

There’s nothing more beautiful than a brand new glossy ceramic pot! They’re durable, classy, and usually fairly weather resistant. Some even boast that they protect from frost. While ceramics can be an excellent choice, they are probably the priciest option and depending on its size, they can get very heavy as well. They are also susceptible to cracking if knocked over, so best to place them in low traffic areas.


Crispy Wave Fern in Vintage Tin

Tins are a growing trend because they offer the substantial upgraded look of a ceramic pot but are usually much less expensive. Like plastic, tins are not porous so be careful of overwatering. Tins can offer a wide variety of fun colors and designs but also usually have interesting texture and 3D elements.


Aloe in Clay

Clay is a long-standing gardener favorite, especially for outdoor plants. It’s porous, allowing the soil to breathe without drying out too quickly. Oftentimes, the color and design variety is much less expansive than other pot materials, mostly coming in oranges, grays, and browns, but that can be perfect for any earth-tone lovers out there (me!). Keep in mind, clay can chip and break if knocked over.


Daffodils in Wooden Box Planter

If you’re looking for a natural look but clay isn’t your thing, wooden containers are a popular choice. Wooden planters are porous, which is great for air circulation, but still monitor your outdoor and high light plants to make sure they don’t dry out too quickly. Important: when choosing the wooden planter, be sure its rot-resistant wood so it doesn’t mind the frequent waterings!

Changing out pots is a fun way to refresh your plants without having to go out and buy new plants altogether. Play with different color schemes or switch out with the holidays for an additional spice up with your décor. If you’re like me, you’ll find yourself with a mix of all these types of pots throughout your home and welcome the motley of benefits they offer.

How to Choose the Best Pots for your Plants