Now that we are nearing high Summer, the evenings are getting much longer, the days are more much warmer, its the time for planting and filling of our garden hanging baskets. Along with these we may also plant flower pots and window boxes and get them ready for treating us with a majestic display and show of colour throughout the summer months. As soon as all frosts have dissappeared from our radars and we see these seedlings or baby plants for sale in our nurseries and garden centres, we know then that the time has come to commence this task. Its not so much a task as its a chore to really look forward to and when achieved, we will feel mightly chuffed with our handy work. There is certainly a great deal of satisfaction to be achieved, if we have planted a few hanging baskets and also some flower pots and especially when we see the displays that these will produce later on.
For those of us that may have done this planting previously, we will really look forward to this, but for those of us, where this may be our first attempt at doing something of this nature, we will explain fully how easily this can be achieved from start to finish.
Step # 1;
From the above image we can see what we require for this exercise, beginning with the hanging basket, which is a 30cm. basket and can be purchased at any hardware store or garden centre. Some of these baskets come with inserted liners or fleece type inserts, which line the inside frame of our basket and thus prevents the compost from falling through the basket frame. In my case, I bought the baskets seperately ( which are cheaper ) and then during one of my daily walks through the local woods, I was able to freeily pick some clumps or mats of moss, which will suffice as a liner of our baskets, just as good. Along with the baskets and the moss, we need some compost, our summer bedding plants and flowers and some water. In terms of how much compost we require a small bucket will be fine, which equates to about 10 litres.
Step # 2;
Our next step is to carefully line our basket with the moss and this is very easy to do. Just place the clumps along the inside of the frame and when completed, it looks pretty similar to a birds nest. The other important issue to take into consideration is to have the green side of the moss facing outwards and this will leave the brown or roots facing inwards. The reason for this exercise is, ( as per image ) when fully planted, the roots may start to grow again when they come in contact with the compost and they may eventually knit together and form a really tight natural type of layer.
Step # 3;
From here onwards its get a little exciting and becomes more interesting as we are almost ready to begin planting our flowers. Before that we simply water lightly the whole bed of moss and then add some compost. Fill the basket up to ¾ from the top and we are now ready to start setting our summer bedding plants. Always ensure the compost is a litte wet as this will help the plants to settle and bed in easily.
Step # 4;
Now we are at the point to do up the planting and from here onwards we are almost complete. Again we need to water the plants thoroughly before planting and if the rootball is a little pot bound, just tease out the roots gently and this will help our basket flowers to grow sooner and help them get a good start in our hanging baskets. Tilt the plants outwards a little and this will help to shape the form of the hanging basket later on, ie, the flowers will spill out over the edges and along with growing upwards, they will also grow out and downwards, as is the nature of these particular species. In this example, I have planted two trailing Surfina Petunias, three trailing lobelia, two summer bedding Petunias, two Pansy summer bedding flowers and two Violas. Finally, we need to water the whole basket and this helps all the flowers and the compost to bed and settle in to the hanging garden basket.
Step # 5;
In the above image we see the finished result and although, it does’nt look all that exciting or appealing just now, I know that in approx. one month’s time, this garden hanging basket will be unrecognisable. The trailing petunias and trailing lobelia will have started to flourish and will begin flowing downwards and outwards from the basket. The three other varieties of summer flowers ( pansy, petunia and viola ) will have begun to mature and will spread themselves outwards and upwards and will form a great bloom or cover of colour across the whole basket. They will all entertwine in due course, as they reach upwards for the sunlight and the nourishment that that provides for them.
The compost comes treated with all the nourishment, minerals and trace elements, but after approx. 4 – 6 weeks, we will need to start feeding this container. We can feed with a liquid feed say once a week or we can insert some slow release fertilizer pellets, which will supplement the compost and will enhance the growth and ensure a continuous flowering display right throughout the summer months and all the way up to the first frosts in the fall.
These hanging garden baskets can be located anywhere around our house or backgardens. I tend to have them on display somewhere towards the front of the house, so that when on entering and leaving, I can see this great show of colour. They can also be hung on our patios, garden sheds, deckings, front porches, on the front, side or back of our houses also. One word of caution and that is, just to ensure that we have a very firm hook or bracket to attach these hanging garden baskets to, because when fully planted and totally watered, these containers will weigh anywhere up to 20 lbs or more. I trust that you have enjoyed reading this post and if so, remember we are social and do get in contact with us, via the comments section down below.
Happy gardening to all once again,
“Regardless of geographical region or culture
gardening is perhaps
the most common and shared
experience of Nature.”
― S. Kelley Harrell