Mr. Myles and Nora use a large plastic trash barrel and a shovel to plant beautiful flowers.
Because Mr. Myles is in a wheelchair, Nora (his nurse) does the initial work of preparing the soil for planting. First, she uses her pocketknife to cut holes in the bottom of the barrel. The holes are to allow for easy drainage of water.
Next, Nora shovels the dirt into the barrel. After she has finished, Nora presents Mr. Myles with the dozen or so seed packets she has brought with her. As for Mr. Myles, he chooses his flowers carefully. To help him plant, Nora pushes Mr. Myles as close to the barrel as she can.
Mr. Myles has to plant from his wheelchair. The text tells us that he plants snapdragons, hollyhocks, and poppies.