Do you like hanging flower baskets? I certainly do which is why I make a dozen or so baskets every spring to hang up on my porch and along the walkways surrounding my home. Making your own hanging basket is super easy to do and saves you lots of money too. Here’s some basic instructions for creating your own hanging flower baskets.
The most important part of making a hanging flower arrangement is the basket itself. I used recycled plastic baskets myself but there are many other options too. Hanging peat pots, plastic pots, and coconut matting can be purchased at most gardening centers for $5 or less. For the super thrifty, dollar stores also carry hanging baskets from $1-2. Also necessary is some high quality potting mix, a small trowel, and a selection of annuals.
Choosing the flowers for your hanging basket
When it comes to selecting flowers for your hanging baskets, don’t make the mistake of mixing up incompatible plants. The annuals you pick should have similar lighting needs (full sunny or partial shade), similar watering needs, and be compatible in terms of color. If you like the look of just one kind of plant in your flower baskets, that’s OK too. A basket filled with different colored petunias or nasturtiums look quite beautiful. Other popular annuals that look pretty in hanging baskets include ivy geraniums, lobelia, fuschias, or pansies.
Building your hanging basket begins filling it with potting mix to a height of two inches below the rim. Tamp the soil and water lightly. Remove your annuals from their plastic pots. Scoop away enough amount of potting mix from the center to hold three plants for small baskets or four plants for larger baskets. Cover the roots with additional soil, tamp down and water in.
Protecting from freeze
Annuals will need to be protected from freezing temperatures until after danger of frost has past. What I’ll do until then is leave my baskets outdoors in filtered sun by day and then bring them into my greenhouse at night to protect them from freezing temperatures ( a garage or the laundry room will work too). Once all danger of frost is past, the baskets can then remain outdoors for the rest of the summer.
Just like any other container garden, hanging flower baskets need to be watered daily. During the summer months when the temperatures rise, I’ll water the baskets in the morning and then place a filled watering bulb into the pot at the bases of the plants as well. This keeps them hydrated throughout the entire day.
Maintaining your hanging flower baskets is just as easy as making them. I “deadhead” spent blooms regularly along with pruning gangly stems and wilted leaves so that the hanging basket maintains a pleasing shape. By the end of July, the flower basket is ready for a little bit of liquid fertilizer which will keep it blooming until the end of summer.
More by this contributor:
7 ways to protect your plants during a heat wave
How to grow your own tray of annual bedding plants from seed
Why I grow some of my herbs in pots