Flowers for 4-inch pots (what are the best) 

Flowers for 4 inch pots

With more and more of us living in smaller apartments due to the rising cost of living, many of us now lack the outdoor space we were used to. As such, more and more of us are looking at ways to grow flowers, plants, and other greenery in small spaces. Recently I’ve been testing out growing flowers in 4-inch pots. So can you grow flowers in four-inch pots? 

Flowers can easily be grown in smaller four-inch pots. Some species of flower will thrive in smaller ports. The best species to grow in 4-inch pots include Chrysanthium, Forget-me-nots, Carnation, and French Marigolds. 

Flowers for 4-inch pots can typically be cultivated successfully both in indoor and outdoor spaces. 

So what exactly are the best species of flowers for 4-inch pots? And how exactly do you grow flowers in 4-inch pots? Keep reading to find out more!

Just a quick heads up, over the past three years of running Plantpaladin, hundreds of people have asked for product recommendations. As such, You can find my favorite indoor bonsai tree here (link takes you to Bonsaiboy), my favorite outdoor bonsai tree (link takes you to Bonsaiboy), or have a look at all the products I recommend here

Flowers for 4-inch pots

So, to get to the bottom of whether it was possible to grow flowers and plants in 4-inch pots, I contacted a few experts, visited my local botanical gardens, and every undertook a quick survey of ten plant paladin readers. 

I even attempted to grow a few flowers in my 4-inch pots. 

To summarize: 

  • Flowers can successfully be grown in 4-inch pots. 
  • While not all flower species will be suitable for these shallow pots ( rose species, for example, will typically need at least 9 to 12 inches of depth to bloom), many flower species can be grown in 4-inch pots. 
  • Among the best flower species to grow in four-inch pots include; Mysotis (commonly known as forget-me-nots), Sweet Alyssum, French Marigolds, Mexican Petunias, Impatiens, Pansies, Johnny Jump-Ups, Geraniums, Wax Begonias. 
  • Other viable species of flowers for 4-inch pots include Chrysanthemum, Phlox, Zinnia, Kalanchoe, Ice plants, Carnations, Larkspur, Balsam, and Spurge. 
  • Bonsai tree species that produce flowers can also be grown in shallow four-inch pots, such as Azalea, Fuckien tea, and Magnolia trees. 
  • Bonsai trees, as a whole, are a lot more susceptible to growing indoors in shallow pots due to them being miniaturized versions of trees. 
  • Most flowers grown in four-inch pots can be grown indoors and outdoors, but pay attention to the individual care needs of your flower, as they will require different levels of sunlight, water, and general care. 

Flowers for 4-inch pots

What are the best flowers to grow in four-inch pots? 

So now we know that you can indeed grow flowers in four-inch pots; what are the best flower species to grow in four-inch pots? 

Well, as laid out above, thankfully, there are a large number of flowers that we can successfully grow in these shallow pots. 

These include: 

  • Forget-me-nots
  • Sweet alyssum
  • French marigolds
  • Mexican Petunias
  • Impatiens
  • Pansies
  • Johnny jump-ups
  • Geraniums 
  • Wax begonias
  • Chrysanthemum
  • Phlox
  • Zinnia
  • Kalanchoe
  • Ice plants
  • Carnations
  • Larkspur
  • Balsam
  • Spurge

Now I’ll go into more detail on these plants below, but to help summarize, I’ve pulled together a table below: 

4 inch pot flowers table


Sunlight Requirements

Watering Requirements

Temperature Requirements

Hours of Sunlight


Partial shade to sun


Cool (50-65°F/10-18°C)

4-6 hours

Sweet alyssum

Full sun


Moderate (60-75°F/16-24°C)

6-8 hours

French marigolds

Full sun

Low to moderate

Warm (65-80°F/18-27°C)

6-8 hours

Mexican Petunias

Full sun to partial shade

Low to moderate

Warm (70-85°F/21-29°C)

6-8 hours (full sun) / 3-4 hours (partial shade)


Partial shade


Cool to moderate (60-75°F/16-24°C)

4-6 hours (partial shade)


Full sun to partial shade

Moderate to high

Cool (40-60°F/4-15°C)

4-6 hours (partial shade) / 6-8 hours (full sun)

Johnny jump-ups

Full sun to partial shade

Moderate to high

Cool (40-60°F/4-15°C)

4-6 hours (partial shade) / 6-8 hours (full sun)


Full sun to partial shade

Moderate to high

Moderate (60-75°F/16-24°C)

6-8 hours

Wax begonias

Partial shade to sun


Warm (65-80°F/18-27°C)

4-6 hours (partial shade) / 6-8 hours (full sun)


Full sun to partial shade

Moderate to high

Cool (40-70°F/4-21°C)

4-6 hours (partial shade) / 6-8 hours (full sun)


Full sun to partial shade

Moderate to high

Moderate (60-75°F/16-24°C)

4-6 hours (partial shade) / 6-8 hours (full sun)


Full sun


Warm (65-80°F/18-27°C)

6-8 hours


Full sun to partial shade

Low to moderate

Warm (65-80°F/18-27°C)

6-8 hours (full sun) / 4-6 hours (partial shade)

Ice plants

Full sun

Low to moderate

Warm (65-80°F/18-27°C)

6-8 hours


Full sun to partial shade

Moderate to high

Cool (40-70°F/4-21°C)

4-6 hours (partial shade) / 6-8 hours (full sun)


Full sun

Low to moderate

Cool (40

6-8 hours


Forget-me-nots are delicate flowers popular for their small, sky-blue blooms with yellow centers. 

They are native to Europe but have been introduced to many other parts of the world, where they are often grown as garden plants.

The scientific name for forget-me-nots is Myosotis, and with over 50 species of forget-me-nots, they vary in size and color. 

The most commonly cultivated species is Myosotis sylvatica.

Forget-me-nots prefer cool, moist environments and can be grown in various settings, including rock gardens, borders, and containers – making them the ideal flower to be grown in a four-inch pot. 

Sweet alyssum. 

Lobularia maritima, most commonly known as Sweet Alyssum, is a low-growing annual plant native to the Mediterranean region but is now widely cultivated in many parts of the world. 

It is a member of the Brassicaceae family, which includes other plants such as mustard, broccoli, and cabbage.

Sweet alyssum is known for its delicate and fragrant white, pink, lavender, or purple flowers that bloom profusely in the spring and summer. 

You can grow Sweet Alyssum in a 4-inch pot as it only grows 4-8 inches tall, so it’s well suited for container gardening, including growing in a 4-inch pot.

French marigolds. 

French marigolds (Tagetes patula) are a popular annual flowering plant from Mexico. They are known for their bright and showy yellow, orange, and red flowers. 

These flowers are relatively easy to grow and prefer full sun and well-draining soil. 

French marigolds can also help repel pests such as nematodes, which can harm other flowers in your collection.

French marigolds can also be grown in a four-inch pot; however, they may have better-growing conditions.

French marigolds can grow up to 10-12 inches in height, depending on the variety so they may outgrow a small pot quickly.

Ideally, keep your french marigold in a four-inch pot for no longer than two years. 

Mexican Petunias

Mexican petunias (Ruellia simplex) are perennial flowering plants native to Mexico but widely cultivated in many parts of the world. 

They are known for their attractive purple, pink, or white trumpet-shaped flowers that bloom from spring to fall. 

Mexican petunias are commonly grown as ornamental plants in gardens and landscapes. Mexican petunias can tolerate various temperatures and are hardy in USDA zones 8-11.

Now, these flowers can also be grown in four-inch pots for a few years; however, to ensure they can be kept in there year-round, ensure that you trim any excessive growth both from the roots and the leaves regularly as these plants can grow up to 2 to 4 feet in height. 


Impatiens walleriana is a popular annual flowering plant native to East Africa. 

Its flowers come in shades of pink, white, red, purple, and orange. 

Impatiens are commonly grown in garden beds, borders, and containers and, because of this versatility, are ideal for growing in four-inch pots. 

Just ensure they are grown partial to full shade and well-draining soil and watered twice to 3 times per week for best results.

Just be aware that In recent years, impatiens have been affected by a disease called downy mildew, which can cause the flower leaves to rot and spread to others in your collection, so be vigilant when choosing. 


Pansies are a popular annual or perennial flowering plant native to Europe and Asia but widely cultivated in many parts of the world. 

Their flowers come in shades of blue, purple, yellow, red, and white, so if you want a flower with a wide range of colors to go after – this is your best bet. Pansies are commonly grown directly in pots and containers, making them perfect for growing in four-inch pots. 

Johnny jump-ups. 

The small size of Johnny jump-up plants makes them ideal for growing in small pots or containers.

A 4-inch pot is typically sufficient for a young Johnny jump-up plant, but as it grows, it will need to be transplanted into a larger container to provide enough space for the plant to grow and thrive.


If you are starting with a small geranium plant, a 4-inch pot will be appropriate, but as the plant grows and matures, it will eventually need to be transplanted to a larger pot to provide enough room for the roots to grow and to support the plant’s growth.

Geraniums are relatively easy to grow and prefer full sun to partial shade and well-draining soil, so ensure your 4-inch pot has plenty of drainage holes. 

Wax begonias

If you are interested in flowers with multiple colors on the same plant, I highly recommend Wax Begonias. 

These flowers are native to Brazil, are ideal for growing indoors, and work just as well in hanging baskets as in four-inch pots. 


One of the things I like best about Chrysanthemums is that some of the subspecies are perennials, meaning they bloom year-round. 

Native to Europe and Asia, these flowers are prevalent around the household. 

One of the best things about these flowers is that they are super easy to care for, making them ideal for growing in a four-inch pot. 


I highly recommend using Phlox as a four-inch pot flower if you are based in the USA. 

Not only are they native to the US, but they also come in pink, red, white, and purple, meaning that they will suit most garden and indoor spaces. 

If you want to attract more butterflies and bees to your garden, I would choose these flowers. 

Phlox are incredibly easy to care for, making them ideal for beginners. 


So, while most of us look at these flowers for aesthetics, some of you reading this will want to give your flowers as cutting to friends and family. 

As such, Zinnia works incredibly well and can be grown very quickly in a four-inch pot. 

While native to Mexico, these flowers can be grown pretty much in most conditions. 

These flowers are also incredibly fast-growing, blooming 6 to 8 weeks after sowing, making them ideal for pot growth. 


With over 125 species, Kalanchoe is one of the most popular houseplants worldwide. 

Kalanchoe plants have fleshy, succulent leaves and produce clusters of small, brightly colored flowers in shades of pink, orange, red, yellow, and white. 

They are famous for their attractive foliage and long-lasting blooms, lasting several weeks.

These blooms last much longer than some other flowers on his list, making them ideal for growing in a four-inch pot. 

Ice plants.

Ice plants are succulent plants belonging to the family Aizoaceae. 

They are native to South Africa and are well-suited to arid and semi-arid climates. 

The flowers of ice plants are often brightly colored, ranging from shades of pink, purple, yellow, and white. 

They produce daisy-like blooms that can cover the plant in a carpet of color. 

Ice plants are also known for their tolerance to heat, drought, and poor soil conditions, making them popular indoor plants. 

Most succulents and cacti can be grown indoors with the proper care, so if you want to learn more about flowering cacti, check out my post here. 

Where flowers are located on cacti
Where flowers are located on cacti (example 1)


It is possible to grow carnations in a four-inch pot, but they may only be viable for one to two years before they require repotting for long-term growth and development. 

Carnations are perennials that can grow up to 24 inches tall and 18 inches wide and have a deep root system.

If you do decide to grow carnations in a four-inch pot, it’s essential to choose a compact or dwarf variety that is well-suited to small containers. 

How to grow flowers in a four-inch pot? 

So now we know what flowers work best? What is the exact step-by-step process for growing flowers in a four-inch pot? 

Well, as mentioned, this is something I recently tried out myself, and I found ( after failing a few times and speaking to a couple of professionals) that the following works best: 

Choose the right pot and soil.

The first step in growing flowers in a four-inch pot is to choose the right pot and soil. 

Select a pot at least four inches in diameter with drainage holes at the bottom to allow excess water to drain out. 

For soil, use a high-quality potting mix that is lightweight, well-draining, and contains a good blend of organic matter, such as compost or peat moss.

Potting Soil For Bonsai Trees - what good soil needs

Pick the right flowers.

Not all flowers are well-suited for small pots, so choosing the right ones is essential. Some great options include pansies, violas, petunias, marigolds, dianthus, and the others we covered earlier in the post.

These flowers are compact and don’t require much space to grow. 

They also tend to have shallow root systems, which makes them well-suited for small pots.

Plant the flowers.

Once you’ve selected them, it’s time to plant them in the pot. 

Fill the pot with soil, leaving about an inch of space at the top. 

Then, carefully remove the flowers from their containers and gently loosen the roots. 

Place the flowers in the pot, spacing them about an inch apart. 

Press the soil around the roots firmly to eliminate air pockets, but be careful not to overpack the soil.

Water the flowers.

After planting, it’s essential to water your flowers. 

Water the soil until it’s thoroughly moist but not soggy

It’s crucial not to let the soil dry out completely, so make sure to water the flowers whenever the soil feels dry to the touch. 

However, be careful not to overwater your flowers, which can lead to root rot.

Provide enough light.

Most flowers need plenty of light to grow and thrive. 

Place your pot in a location that receives at least six hours of direct sunlight daily. 

If you don’t have access to direct sunlight, consider using a grow light or placing the pot near a window that gets indirect light. 

Rotate the pot every few days to ensure that all sides of the flowers receive equal light.

Please check the table earlier to check the exact sunlight requirements for your flowers. 

Fertilize the flowers.

Flowers grown in small pots may require more frequent fertilization to provide nutrients.

Use a balanced fertilizer with equal amounts of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, and apply it according to the manufacturer’s instructions. 

You can also use a slow-release fertilizer that will provide nutrients over an extended period.

Prune the flowers.

Pruning is essential to ensure that your flowers grow healthy and strong. 

Regularly remove dead or damaged leaves, stems, and flowers to encourage new growth. 

Pinch back the tips of the stems to encourage bushier growth, and remove any stems growing in the wrong direction or causing overcrowding in the pot.

What flowers should you avoid in 4-inch pots? 

So while all the above flowers can be grown in four-inch pots, not all flowers can be grown in as shallow a pot as these. 

Some flowers need more sizeable pots and more soil to support their size and the sheer amount of nutrients and minerals needed to get flowers to bloom. 

Most roses require pots that are at least 9 inches deep to spread out their roots effectively. 

Were you to place a rose in a 4-inch pot, it would likely become stunted and may never bloom flowers. 

Other flower species that should be avoided when growing in a four-inch pot include: 

  • Most fruit and vegetable plants produce flowers, as they require deep roots. 
  • Sunflowers
  • Daffodils 
  • Any roots that need to go deeper than 5 inches. 

How fast do flowers grow in four-inch pots? 

The exact speed flowers will grow in a four-inch pot will depend on the species of flower, Zinnia flowers, for example, can start blooming flowers 6 to 8 weeks after sowing. Other flowers, such as geraniums, may only bloom once before you then have to move them into a larger pot. 

Generally, annual flowers grown in four-inch pots will proliferate, with visible growth within a few weeks of planting.

However, the growth rate may slow if the plants are root-bound or need more nutrients or water. In addition, the size of the pot can limit the growth of the plant, as smaller pots may restrict the growth of the roots and limit the plant’s overall size.

It’s essential to properly care for your plants, including regular watering, fertilization, and ensuring they have adequate sunlight and growing conditions. 

Flowers in four-inch pots can grow and thrive with proper care and optimal conditions, but their growth rate may be slower than if grown in larger containers or on the ground.

Where to buy good 4-inch pots? 

So one of the most significant benefits of 4-inch pots is that they are widespread, so most reputable garden centers, garden stores, or even general supermarkets will stock these. 

Most 4-inch pots are not created equal, so I’ve compiled my recommendations for the two best 4-inch posts. 

One which works as the best budget option and one which works as the best premium option: 

The best budget 4-inch pot

So, the best budget 4-inch pot to grow your flowers in has to be the Delxo 4-inch post which you can grab here (the link takes you to Amazon). 

These pots come with eight holes, meaning you won’t have to worry about your roots becoming waterlogged, but these pots also come with plants of spares at a reasonable price, meaning you will only really need to make a one-time purchase. 

Best premium option

So the best premium option if you want to push the boat and invest in a 4-inch pot that won’t crack after a couple of years and will last you a lifetime has to be D’vines 4inch pot, which you can grab here (link takes you to Amazon)

What I like best about this pot is that it comes in a set of three, meaning that when your flowers eventually grow out of its four-inch pot, you will have the next size up to transport it across easily. 

On top of this, these posts are made from terracotta, making them much more visually pleasing than standardized plastic pots. 

Finally, these pots also come with a dipping tray, meaning you won’t have to worry about causing any further damage to your existing houseware while you search for a moisture tray. 

Benefits of growing flowers in four-inch pots

There are several significant benefits to growing flowers in four-inch pots, including.


One of the most significant benefits of growing flowers in small pots is that they only take up a little space. 

This makes them ideal for people with limited space in their homes or gardens, such as those living in apartments or having small balconies.


Growing flowers in four-inch pots is an affordable way to add color and beauty to your home or garden. 

Small pots are less expensive than larger ones, and you can grow multiple varieties of flowers in a small space.

Easy to maintain. 

Small pots are easier to maintain than larger ones since they require less water and fertilizer.

Additionally, you can move them around more efficiently, which makes it easier to care for the flowers and protect them from pests and diseases.

Ideal for beginners

If you’re new to gardening, growing flowers in four-inch pots is a great way to start.

Small pots are easy to manage, and you can experiment with different types of flowers without committing to a larger, more challenging project.


Four-inch pots are portable, so you can move them around to different locations. 

This is especially useful if you want to bring your flowers inside during harsh weather to showcase them in different parts of your home.

Aesthetically pleasing.

Finally, growing flowers in four-inch pots can be a beautiful addition to your home or garden. 

You can mix and match different types of flowers to create a stunning, colorful, fragrant display. 

Plus, small pots can create unique arrangements, such as hanging baskets or window boxes, that can charm any space.

Drawbacks of growing flowers in four-inch pots

While there are many benefits to growing flowers in four-inch pots, there are also some drawbacks. 

These drawbacks include

Limited space. 

The small size of four-inch pots can be a drawback if you’re looking to grow larger flowers or plants. 

Some species of flowers may not thrive in a small pot or require more frequent watering or fertilization to stay healthy.

Root-bound plants

When a plant’s roots become too crowded in a small pot, they can become root-bound, stunting its growth or even causing it to die. 

You will need to carefully monitor the growth of your flowers and transplant them to a larger pot if they become root-bound.

More frequent watering

Because four-inch pots have limited space, the soil dries out more quickly than in a larger pot. 

This means that you’ll need to water your flowers more frequently, which can be time-consuming and may require more attention.

Limited variety. 

Some varieties of flowers may need to be better suited to growing in small pots.

For example, plants that require a lot of space or nutrients may not thrive in a four-inch pot.

Additionally, certain types of flowers may require specific soil conditions or pH levels that may be difficult to achieve in a small pot.

Vulnerable to pests. 

Small pots can be more vulnerable to pests like spider mites or aphids, as they have less soil and may be more susceptible to infestations. 

You’ll need to be vigilant about monitoring your flowers for signs of pests and taking steps to control them.

Do 4-inch pots work better indoors or outdoors? 

Growing flowers in 4-inch pots will work if you keep them indoors and outdoors. 

Growing flowers in four-inch pots is much more commonplace for flowers you keep indoors or in shaded spots. 

This is because four-inch pots are typically much easier to move around. This extra portability will make it ideal for moving your flowers into the best spot for sunlight and temperature. 

On top of this, many people mainly opt for growing flowers in four-inch pots instead of larger pots or planting them directly in the ground because most of the species are grown outside of their native climate. 

Growing these flowers in small pots means moving them around much easier into environments that best mimic their natural habits. 

This can be done by keeping them on a windowsill to get enough sunlight or moving them into a bespoke greenhouse

Can you mix flowers in four-inch pots? 

Different flower species can be mixed together to make visually pleasing bouquets in four-inch pots so long as they have the same care requirements. 

For example, if both the flowers in your four-inch pot require the same amount of watering and sunlight and must be kept at the same temperature, they can be successfully grown together in the same pot. 

This is one of how plants are grown from hanging baskets.

Alternatively, avoid growing flowers in the same pots if they have very different care requirements, such as one flower needing a lot of direct sunlight and another needing partial shade. 

Can you grow bonsai tree flowers in four-inch pots? 

Bonsai trees prefer being grown in shallow pots to help with the miniaturization process. Species such as Fukien Tea, Azalea, and Magnolia bonsai trees can quickly be grown in four-inch pots. Flowering Bonsai trees, too, can successfully be grown in four-inch pots. 

The soil type is the only significant difference in growing bonsai in four-inch pots. Most bonsai trees prefer an inorganic soil mix to a traditional peat soil most commonly used for the flowers discussed in this post. 

What plants grow in four inches of soil? 

Flowers such as forget-me-nots, Sweet alyssum, French marigolds, Mexican Petunias, Impatiens, Pansies, Johnny jump-ups, Geraniums, and Wax begonias, can all be grown in four inches of soil.

Vegetables and herbs, including ​​Mustard, Salad Greens, Radish, Garlic, Mint, Marjoram, Thyme, and Asian Greens, can also be grown in four inches of soil.  

Survey on growing flowers in 4-inch pots

Finally, I wanted to ask again if growing flowers in 4-inch pots was possible. 

As such, I contacted ten plant paladin readers who grow flowers in pots to see if 4 inches was too small. 

To summarize: 

Flowers for 4-inch pots - survey results

My top picks for the gear you will need!

So like I mentioned earlier, over the past three years of running PlantPaladin, hundreds of people have asked me for my recommendations on the best bonsai gear on the market. 

Having spent thousands of dollars on bonsai items these past few years and tested at least 100 bonsai-specific products, I’ve listed my favorite products below – All of which I highly recommend and think you can get great value. 

They can purchase directly by clicking the link to take them to Amazon. 

Bonsai Tool Set: One of the significant challenges I’ve had is finding a toolset that was not only durable but didn’t break the bank. SOLIGT has recently developed a fantastic bonsai tool set that covers all the tools you need to trim, prune, and repot your trees. – You can grab it here

Complete Bonsai Set: Many of you will want to grow your bonsai trees entirely from scratch, but finding the varicose seeds, pots, and other items in one place can be challenging. Leaves and Sole then have created a complete bonsai set that I’ve personally used that ticks all the boxes. You can grab it here

Bonsai wire: The number of times I’ve run out of wire for my bonsai or purchased cheap bonsai wire that doesn’t do the job is embarrassing for me to admit. After a lot of trial and error, I found that using Hotop’s aluminum bonsai wire is one of the best options on the market. This can easily be used for both indoor and outdoor bonsai. You can grab it here.

Fehed Nicass

Fehed Nicass has been passionate about all things bonsai and botany focused for the past 3 years. What started out as a hobby has developed as a passion and he is now on a mission to teach and learn.

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