Inspiration and Advice
How to Master the 'Thrill, Fill and Spill' Effect
How to Master the 'Thrill, Fill and Spill' Effect
Melissa King
Garden Expert & TV Presenter
Better Homes and Gardens

If you’ve seen pretty pictures of different plants all jumbled together in the one container, but you’re hesitant to give it a go, try using the ‘Thrill Fill and Spill’ technique. It’s a wonderful way to create an eye-catching potted garden.

  • First pick out the star of the show – the perfect pot. Consider the colour of your home and garden décor and don’t go for anything too small because it will need to accommodate a few plants.
  • Then choose a “Thrill” plant. It’s the Prima Donna of your display – something showy and eye-catching with a bit of height that is positioned at the back of the pot. Colourful strappy leafed plants like Burgundy Cordylines or Phormiums work well.
  • The Fill plant is our second leading lady. It’s the shorter, more rounded plant that sits in front, but just to the side, of the Thriller and fills the container out nicely. Don’t be afraid to add a splash of colour here with brightly coloured foliage or flowers.
  • The Spill plant is the finishing touch - a trailing or cascading beauty that tumbles over the edge of the container and completes the look. WOW – the perfect potted picture.
  • Just remember to team plants together that enjoy similar growing conditions.