Now that the warmer weather is on its way, it’s the perfect time to start thinking about brightening up the outside of your home with some fragrant and colourful hanging baskets . They are the ideal way to create an attractive display, however limited your outdoor space or your gardening experience.
There are several different styles of hanging baskets to choose from - usually made from wire or wicker. The basket will need to be lined to keep the compost and moisture contained - typically with sphagnum moss. Alternatively, you could go for a purpose-made option which will also hopefully last for several seasons.
The most commonly seen plants in hanging baskets are, of course, spring and summer bedding plants, but many gardeners opt for evergreen shrubs, herbs or even fruits such as tomatoes and strawberries. In fact, you could use more or less any plant, as long as you ensure that the basket is big enough.
To create your hanging basket, the first step is to add the liner and then half-fill with compost. A slow-release fertiliser can be added to help keep the plants healthy. Trailing plants should then be pushed through the liner on the sides of the basket, and the rest of your plants can be placed in the top.
Compost should then be packed around the roots and the whole thing watered well. All this should be done in the late spring if you are going for a display of summer bedding plants, or early autumn for a winter or spring display.
All that remains is to feed and water your hanging baskets regularly. They will need watering twice a day if possible in the hot summer weather. Your plants will also benefit from regular liquid feeds and deadheading every week or so.