Create the Ultimate Summer Hanging Basket!
With summer fast approaching, we have gathered our expert’s best tips and tricks for creating the perfect hanging basket to grace your home and garden!
Impress your friends and family with a beautiful waterfall of flowers this summer (and beyond) by adding the perfect finishing touch to your outdoor space.
In terms of choosing a hanging basket, there is a lot of choice in regard to; the shape, the size, and the materials.
Rattan, plastic, and metal frame baskets are some of the most popular types and our Garden Centres have a huge selection, just waiting to inspire you. Find your nearest centre here.
There are many varieties of liner on the market, if your basket requires them.
Moss and wool moss are perfect for plastic or metal frame type baskets (we will get into that more later!) …coconut fibre can be cut to size or can be found pre-formed, as can recycled fibre material. All these options can be found in any of our Garden Centres, just ask one of our friendly members of staff if you need help choosing! If you purchase a basket with a plastic lining, simply cut a few drainage holes in the plastic.
A good multi-purpose or a tub and basket compost is ideal, but it is best to enhance it by adding the following:
- A scoop of water retaining crystals is a must to avoid the baskets drying out too much on those hot summer days.
- A good handful of slow-release fertilizer mixed into the compost will give the plants a good head start.
‘Thrillers’ are the showstoppers, the upright plants that create height in the basket and give it real punch! Geraniums, Fuchsia or even small Cordylines are great, and can also be transplanted into the garden when they become too large.
‘Spillers’ are the plants that flow and hang over the edges. Trailing varieties of Begonias, Fuchsias and Petunias, plus Diascia and Bacopa will create beautiful waterfalls of blooms!
‘Fillers’ are plants that fill in the gaps and give that fullness for a nice, finished look! Petunias, Impatiens, Bush Lobelia & Alyssum are some great options.
A great starter option are our Hanging Basket & Patio Planter Kits £5.99 – these fabulous kits can be found in our Garden Centres and include a mix of 6 complimentary showstoppers, trailing plants, and fillers in a range of colours.
It doesn’t always have to be about the flowers; fruit such as strawberries or tomatoes and even herbs can be a real success in hanging baskets. Just beware the birds do not find them before you can enjoy the fruits of your labours.
Plastic or Metal Frame Baskets
If you have chosen a frame style basket, you don’t need to line the whole thing and only have plants growing from the top; make the most of the extra planting space and add in some trailing plants to the sides and base! Line the bottom with a small circle of liner fabric to give a secure base, and add a little of your compost, granule and feed mix on top.
Wool moss acts as a liner for the sides when it is compacted between each plant. Slot your spillers through the gaps but protect the foliage by wrapping a bit of scrap paper or plastic around the leaves before doing so and remove when it is safely in place! Make sure they are facing downwards to encourage that waterfall effect, pack in the moss between each one, and fill in with the compost mix behind.
Alternatively, you can always line the whole basket and just cut holes in the fabric and slot through your spillers!
Continue to position your spillers around the base and sides and as you fill more with compost, try patting it down into a bowl shape to encourage drainage.
Plant your thriller in the centre as your showstopper and add a few filler plants around the edges of the top of the basket to fill in the gaps, this will create that gorgeous full look as the flowers start to grow and bloom.
For a simpler approach and a different basket style, fill your basket with your compost mix, patting the compost down into a bowl shape. Position your thriller in the centre and add 3 spillers in a triangle shape around it. Remember to plant your spillers at an angle, this will encourage trailing over the side of the basket as they will grow in that direction.
Plant your filler plants in the spaces to infill your basket and voilà!
Hang your basket on a bracket, water regularly and feed once a month with a liquid feed.
Meanwhile, sit back during the day with a nice cup of tea and enjoy!
You can spice things up a little for your evenings, with some small Solar or Battery powered lights discreetly positioned between the plants and around the basket… then you can sit with your cool beverage of choice and admire your handy work all evening long!