Get the Hang of Hanging Flower Baskets

Who does not love a hanging basket filled with a profusion of foliage or blossoms? This sort of container gardening is a magical addition to your deck, patio, arbor or deck and it’s simple, as long as you know a few tricks of the trade. Below are some ideas on planting your hanging baskets and maintaining them lush and flourishing all year.


The Fundamentals. Hanging baskets can be created using plastic hanging planters, wire baskets lined with cherry cubes, rattan baskets or perhaps glazed pottery containers with attached hooks. There isn’t one appropriate substance to use — it’s mostly about aesthetics and the look you are trying to create. Keep in mind, however, that each kind of container may result in varying watering programs, as the soil dries will probably dry out differently in each.

Rebekah Zaveloff | KitchenLab

Nearly any kind of smaller plant which may be grown in the floor may be utilised at a hanging basket. The crops that typically appear the best, however, are the ones which have a soft downward observation or mounding habit as opposed to a stiff upright growth pattern. Elect for crops such as ivies, pothos, ferns, succulents, vines and annuals such as petunias, impatiens, geraniums, calibrachoa, lobelia and fuschias.

Avoid plants with an extensive root system, shrubs and trees — even if they are dwarf — and plants which are too large, as hanging baskets are inclined to be 1 foot to 2 feet in diameter. Also avoid those that have very particular or catchy maintenance requirements, such as orchids, tillandsias and bromeliads, which would make maintenance an issue.

Travis Knoop Photography

Drainage. Drainage will be very different depending upon what kind of hanging basket material you’re using. Wire containers with cocoa liners will drain almost too freely; hanging pottery can retain too much moisture; and vinyl supplies a joyful drainage medium.

If you’re using cocoa liners, consider putting a plastic saucer at the bottom of the basket prior to adding plants and soil — this can keep some of the water from the dirt, where roots can get it before it drains out.

When employing pottery, add a layer of dirt into the ground before adding plants and soil, water sparingly to prevent rotting and select plants that just like a little extra moisture to counteract the shortage of drainage holes.

I’m not a huge fan of plastic pots, particularly in hanging planters where the bottoms of the plastic pots and the plastic stoves are on display. However, there are a few tricks that I use to disguise them at the event they are the ideal option. I use long trailing plants such as ivy, petunias, calibrachoa and sweet potato vine to pay the plastic kettle, and that I eliminate the plastic hangers and replace them with decorative chains. Just a few minor tweaks may turn a pedestrian plastic kettle into something more attractive.

Rikki Snyder

Watering. The dirt at hanging containers will dry out much more quickly than dirt in your backyard, so be prepared to water daily unless you are using plants that are very dry. Plants which are in more direct sun might even need a twice-daily watering (once in the morning and again in the evening) to keep them well hydrated.

In the event that you inadvertently bypass a day or two and discover your soil is bone dry as well as your plants are wilted, consider the basket down and attempt gradually mowing the planter, repeating several times as the dirt rehydrates. You may need to reduce your wilted foliage and blossoms to reinvigorate plants should they’ve gotten really dried out.

It is possible to hook up drip irrigation into each hanging basket — this option works best if you’ve got a number of hanging baskets in a row to keep irrigated. Tubing hooks up to your water spigot, and emitters branch away the tubing into each basket, providing water efficiently. You will have black tubing that is exposed up the aspect of your porch or terrace post, but so if this kind of appearance bothers you, this may not be the ideal option for you.

Ron Brenner Architects

Fertilizing. Plants which are in any sort of container will require regular fertilizing, particularly if you’re using hungry annuals. Nutrients in the soil leach out much more quickly in containers, which means you’ll need to supplement your crops’ feeding program to make sure their health. Avoid overfertilizing, though, as that may actually harm plants and stop them from blooming. Utilize an all-purpose water-soluble fertilizer or a fertilizer that is formulated for the particular plants you are using. I like to add slow-release fertilizers into the soil at planting time when I’m using heavily feeding annuals; this gives them an excess boost to draw on throughout the growing season.

Fertilizing may be done monthly or, if the solution is combined at half strength, weekly. This is particularly true for flowering annuals, that are heavy feeders. If you are utilizing ferns, succulents or cacti, follow the instructions on the package, but in most instances monthly fertilizing will be sufficient.

Aiken House & Gardens

Planting notes. Make sure to always combine crops which have the same growing requirements for water and sun. You would never plant thirsty impatiens next to a drought-tolerant cactus, do you? While these plants represent the extremes, each plant has its own taste for light and water, so be sure to plan accordingly.

Some experts suggest using a good-quality potting soil in your hanging baskets, while some suggest utilizing outdoor planting dirt. It is important to use dirt that is formulated for the kind of plants you’ll be using — if you’re using cacti or succulents, be sure to use a fast-draining soil mix that is proposed for those kinds of plants, for example. Never use dirt right from your garden bed, however, as this kind of dirt won’t drain correctly in any kind of container.

For a casual, cottage-y appearance, try mixing a variety of leaves and blossoms together in 1 basket, but for a more elegant or modern aesthetic, elect for a single kind and colour of plant . A row of fitting plantings will look much more cohesive than combined plantings, however there’s not any denying the allure of hanging baskets filled to the brim with a lush mixture of tracking flowers.

Frederick + Frederick Architects

Designing. There are a couple of different ways to mimic a designer if putting together your hanging baskets. 1 method is to choose a single plant (purple petunias or asparagus fern, for example) and plant which en masse in each of your baskets. The block of colour and precisely the same planting scheme pack a punch in the distance and look more elegant or modern than combined plantings.

Exquisite Ceramics

If you prefer to use many different crops, however, there’s an easy rule of thumb which designers follow. Go for an upright plant which has some blossoms and bright color (such as red geraniums), then add some tracking blossoms that dampen the edge of the basket (such as lobelia) and finish off with some cascading foliage (like ivy or sweet potato vine). The varying heights, growth patterns and colours create a complete”chunk” of plants which is charming and arresting.

The Secret Formula for Grouping Plants at a Pot

Debra Kling Colour Consultant

Where to hang a basket. The advantages of a porch are an ideal place, as are fencing posts, deck borders and patio covers. Avoid hanging flower baskets at which people may walk into themas in the middle of a ceiling or from entryways to your home or other structures. Always combine hanging baskets on beams or posts which may handle the weight, as watered-in planters are often very heavy. To get a uniform, clean appearance that plays off your home’s design, evenly space out hanging baskets at a porch opening rather than randomly hanging them here and there.

Julie Ranee Photography

Hanging your basket. Plant hooks and brackets are readily available at hardware stores and home improvement stores — make sure to read the weight limitation for each size hook or bracket and purchase according to the anticipated weight of your basket. Most medium-size baskets are not going to weigh more than about 10 pounds, but it’s always good to use hardware which could handle a bit more weight than your planter. Use hooks for crops which will hang from an overhead horizontal structure, such as the edge of a porch, and brackets for plants which will hang out from a vertical construction, like a fence or a wall.
Using a drill with a bit that is slightly smaller than your hook or bracket screw, drill a pilot hole prior to installing the screw. This will avoid cracks or splits in the surrounding wood, and ensure a tight fit, which is important for security. Then push the threaded end of the twist into the pilot hole, turning clockwise to tighten this up until the hook is flush against the ceiling. Use the same process with brackets, except use a drill or screwdriver to tighten the screws into position.

So what to plant? See 6 superstar annuals for baskets and pots

have you got a hanging basket at full glory? Post a photo in the Remarks!

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