How to Create Gorgeous Hanging Baskets

Hanging baskets are such an easy way to add some interest and colour to any space – they can transform walls and fences plus add an extra dimension to your garden. They burst with colour throughout the summer and you can fill them with frost hardy flowers and even evergreens over the winter.
It doesn’t have to be difficult or complicated, as David Thornton from the Derbyshire Horticultural Association explains;
1) Use a good quality compost
2) Think about the symmetry of the basket
3) Select colours that work together
4) Choose 3 to 4 different plants
5) A plant in the middle gives height while plants on the outside trail over the sides of the basket.
 Use a 12 inch Hanging Baskets to start as these hold more volume of compost and will hold moisture in them for longer than a small basket. A flat base gives stability when planting and if you choose one with side panels it will allow you to add interest with larger plants for an instant show of beautiful flowers.
 Make sure you cover the inside of the basket with a liner, this helps retain moisture. There are lots of liners to choose from – moss has a natural look, felt is easy to use and looks fairly natural too. Fill the basket with a layer of multipurpose compost, which preferably has water retaining gel added and make the appropriate cuts in the inner liner spread equally around the basket.
 Now select trailing plants to use on the sides of your summer hanging basket and insert the plant root through the hole you’ve just cut. Take some care doing this as it is important not to damage your plants and make sure the roots are fully inserted through the liner and into the soil or the plants will not survive.
 Make sure you insert the bottom trailing plants first, before covering them with another layer of compost. Add the next layer of plants; try not to squash them too close together. Small plugs are better so go for some summer flowering ready plugs for best effect.
 Mix trailing plants with upright flowering plants for a fuller hanging basket. This adds extra interest to your displays. Don’t forget that you can also grow herbs, fruit and veg in hanging baskets, Tumbler tomatoes make excellent edible subjects! There are many varieties of plants suitable for hanging baskets and sometimes it can be difficult to choose.
If available keep your hanging basket in a greenhouse for a day or two after planting up, particularly if frost or windy weather is forecasted, so plants settle in.
Keep your basket looking fresh by watering and liquid feeding regularly and dead heading plants every couple of weeks.
Recommended plants for your baskets:
Trailing Petunia – Grand Prix and Purple Velvet
Trailing Geranium – Balcony
Training Begonia – Sparkle and Chanson Pink
Fuchsia – Lantana
Training Lobelia – Fountain Mixture
Dichondra – Silver Falls.

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