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Choosing Plants for Hanging Baskets and Containers

Choosing Plants for Hanging Baskets and Containers

There is no better sight than a special display of a full, gorgeous, cascading hanging basket overflowing with colors. Informal and absolutely joyous, hanging baskets and containers have a second to none feel good vibe and can cheer up any space in no time. Choosing plants for hanging baskets and containers is down to personal choice of flowers, colors, and variety, and you must remember that not all plants are suited for hanging baskets. Choosing the right plants for hanging baskets and containers comes down to many factors including trailing habits, their response to sun and shade, container shape, and more. Below will help you in selecting the right plants for hanging baskets and containers. 

Trailing Habits

Smaller plants are ideal for hanging basket plants and containers because any type of small plant can be grown in them. However, the plants that look best in hanging baskets are the ones that have a soft downward trailing or mounding habit rather than a stiff upright growth pattern. Plants like Petunias, Impatiens, Ivies, Ferns and Pothos look absolutely stunning in hanging baskets and containers. 


Sun-loving plants and plants that can tolerate partial shade work beautifully in hanging baskets and containers. You will be displaying your hanging basket on the front porch, back patio, or on a balcony which likely doesn't have sunlight access all day. Plants like Begonia, Sweet Potato vines, and Bacopa are great options. 


It is recommended that you avoid plants that require specific or have tricky care requirements like Orchids, Bromeliads, and more. Maintaining these plants in hanging baskets and containers can be an issue. 


Hanging baskets, container shape, style, and material all play a very big part. Before you choose a plant, pick up the basket or container. Make sure that the basket or the container is large enough to allow the root growth of the plant that you are planning to buy. Drainage also depends on the type of hanging basket material you will use. Hanging containers made out of clay have the ability to retain too much moisture whereas wire containers with cocoa liners have a free-flowing drainage system. Plastic containers provide a decent drainage medium. 


Hanging baskets and containers are meant to mesmerize and captivate. So, opt for plants that will bring a riot of colors to your space. Boston Fern, with its glossy green foliage, provides a fantastic base for any color palette. From Petunias to Portulaca, Geraniums to Begonia, you can then pair them up for a splash of vibrant color. 

Plant Spacing

When planting a hanging basket, the general rule of thumb is to use one plant per inch of basket diameter. So, if your hanging basket or container measures 10” in diameter, it is recommended that you use 10 plants. If you’re selecting plants with a strong growth such as Fuchsia or Geranium hanging basket, then you should go for 4 plants.