Do you LOVE hanging baskets but have a hard time keeping them alive all season?
Here are some tips and top care information Scott Pearce has put together to help you along:
Choose the best Candidate.
- Select a basket with plants that will grow well in your light conditions.
- Most baskets that contain a mix of annuals will thrive in sun or part shade.
- For HOT locations, geraniums and calibrachoas are good choices.
- Fuchsias, Begonias and New Guinea Impatiens are happiest in a mostly shady spot.
- A larger basket, 30cm in diameter or more, will last longer than a small basket that has limited room for plant growth.
You can take a basket to water, but you can’t make it drink.
- After you’ve placed your basket in it’s chosen location, be sure to check it for water as often as every day through the warm summer months. (Simply reach up and lift the basket gently. A relatively light basket needs to be watered, and a relatively heavy basket can go without water until it dries a bit more.)
- A watering wand is a handy accessory, making it easy to reach baskets that are hanging overhead.
- A drip irrigation system can be installed to automate the watering process – especially useful if you have many baskets to water. (Be sure to check regularly to make sure your drip irrigation is working properly!)
Treat your basket to lunch.
- Most plants in hanging baskets are vigorous growers. The frequent watering that hanging baskets require will flush nutrients from the soil.
- When first planting or placing your basket, apply a balanced controlled release fertilizer like GardenWorks 14-14-14 hanging basket food. This will feed baskets slowly for 3 to 4 months.
- Supplement this feeding with a water soluble fertilizer like 20-20-20 every few weeks through the growing season
Basket Grooming 101
- As your baskets bloom and grow, they’ll want regular TLC – remove finished flowers, aged leaves that are drying or turning yellow and any plant debris.
- Pinch off the growing tips of any rapid growers to encourage them to branch out and become bushy.
- If any plants become leggy, trim branches back to make the basket tidy and encourage fresh growth.
- When grooming your baskets, keep an eye out for pest like aphids. If you spot a problem and are unsure how to tackle it, take a sample or snap a photo and drop by GardenWorks for advice!
By: Scott Pearce