Hanging Baskets

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Hanging baskets look wonderful decorating verandahs and porches, or softening other garden structures. But growing plants in hanging baskets, especially in the heat of summer, is akin to plant torture. Hanging baskets heat up, dry out, get buffeted by every breeze that blows, and often have their linings torn to pieces by nest-building birds.

In order to grow hanging baskets that look good – and, after all, isn’t that the point of the exercise – it’s important to keep the plants as happy as possible.

Cool Them Down

Roots haven’t evolved to grow in hot soil, so try to keep the roots of basket plants as cool as possible during summer. You can do this in a number of ways:

Keep Them Moist

Air movement around the baskets hastens evaporation from the sides.

Choose the right plant

The choice of plants for hanging baskets is largely governed by the position. In sunnier spots, it’s hard to beat petunias for masses of summer colour. The mixed colours of petunias all give a great show. In semi-shade grow impatiens. In heavy shade, try something like a maidenhair fern. Through the cooler months grow cinerarias, primulas and polyanthus.


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