Hanging planters add an eye-catching pop of color to a porch, patio, or deck. And a wide variety of flowers, herbs, and greenery are well suited to hanging planters. It’s best to choose plants on the small side. Read on for how-tos and tips for creating beautiful displays for any outdoor living area.
Popular Sun-Loving Plants for Hanging Planters –
Flowering – Geranium, Lantana, Moss rose, Heliotrope, Licorice vine, Verbena
Foliage – Periwinkle, Sweet Potato Vine
Veggies/Fruits – Radishes, Peppers, Beans, Strawberries, Cherry tomatoes, Carrots
Herbs – Mint, Thyme, Chives, Parsley, Basil, Oregano and more.
For more tips on choosing plants, visit here.
Partial to Full Shade Plants for Hanging Planters –
Flowering – Pansy, Nasturtium, Lobelia, Impatiens, Fuchsia, Tuberous Begonia, Silver Bells.
Foliage – English Ivy, Periwinkle, Fern varieties.
How to Create a Beautiful Hanging Planter
- Fit the liner inside the planter – trimming if needed.
- Cut a square-shaped section from a plastic bag. Place it in the bottom of the liner. This will help the liner retain moisture.
- Pour a layer of lightweight potting soil into the liner. Fill the liner to the top – and a few inches above the rim. (Miracle Grow Moisture Control Potting Mix is a good choice.) Pat down lightly.
- Add the plants – arranging them as desired.
- Water the planter until you see water draining from the bottom – the soil should be saturated.
- Check the planter daily for needed moisture.
- Pinch off any faded flowers or foliage to keep the greenery looking neat and healthy.
Buying Tips for Hanging Planters and Liners
Planter Choices –
There’s a wide array of hanging planters available at garden stores and home centers. They range in construction from plastic – to wire – to woven wicker. The planter you choose will depend on your home’s design and the look you want to achieve. Black wire planters look modern, while woven wicker emits a natural, earthy feel.
Whatever style you choose it’s best to keep size in mind. A too-small planter will require more frequent watering and pruning. The larger the basket, the more water the soil will retain. Plus, a larger basket gives a more impressive display.
Liner Choices –
Planter liners are usually an afterthought, but they play an essential role in water retention. See below for info on planter liner materials –
Cocoa Liners –
Cocoa liners are usually pre-molded to fit standard-size planters, and they give a trim, well-kept look to a display. They also tend to be thick, so they’re not the best choice for side planting.
Burlap Liners –
For a rustic, organic feel, burlap liners are the top choice. Plus, they’re inexpensive and eco-friendly. The downside is they are made of a porous fabric so your plants may require more frequent watering.
Sphagnum Moss –
Giving a natural, southern feel, sphagnum moss has a thick texture which makes it ideal to hold in moisture. Sphagnum moss liners are made from a natural plant material that grows in peat bogs and marshes. When water is added, the moss expands to hold approximately 20 times its weight in moisture. To use, wet the moss first, then fill the liner with potting soil.
Pro Tip: Loose sphagnum moss may be difficult to work with. Choose easy to use, pre-formed liners instead.
Supamoss is made from reclaimed fibers. An eco-friendly moss alternative, Supamoss fibers is reinforced with a flexible lining for excellent water retention. Supamoss is natural-looking and can easily be trimmed to fit your hanging planter. It also allows for easy side planting.
Are there plants that don’t grow well in hanging planters?
Yes, the best plants are those that have small flowers and leaves. Your greenery should not grow to be too tall, too wide, or spread outside the container’s perimeter. Spillers such as petunias (Supertunias featured in the top photo), mandevilla or sweet potato vine are exceptions. Also, it’s preferable to pair plants that grow at the same pace because one that grows quickly may outshine its neighbor.
Can I leave my hanging planter up in winter?
Yes, add hardy plants that do well in the cold. Popular selections include:
Primrose – Native to Europe, the brightly colored primrose used to be thought of as only a cottage garden plant. Furthermore, primroses grow well in chilly temperatures and are available in a wide variety of colors including blue, purple, pink, white, red, orange, and yellow.
Winter violets – Are cold hardy and produce an abundance of blooms. They also do well on a windy porch. Winter violets are available in bloom colors – blue, yellow, white and cream. And bicolor varieties –blue-white, and yellow-white.
Cyclamen is a sturdy, flowering plant known for its easy care. Available in pink, purple, red and more, cyclamen happily withstands colder temperatures.
Polyanthus thrives in the colder months of the year. Although the plant may not flower in winter, the attractive green foliage will add much-needed color to the gray winter landscape.
English Ivy – Is another winter-hardy plant that thrives year-round. Ivy will cascade down the side of a planter, providing a dark green backdrop for bright flowering plants.
Winter Pansies are a tough, winter favorite often seen in planting beds next to businesses. These hardy bloomers are available in red, white, yellow and more. To keep winter pansies healthy removed faded or frost-bitten blooms often.
Where should I display my hanging planter?
Hanging planters can be hung almost anywhere you prefer. Most homeowners display them for color on either side of an entrance, on a deck or porch. An outdoor living area is a popular spot as well.
Where you display your planter will partially depend on plant requirements – do they prefer sun, partial sun or shade? Hanging planters set on the south or west side of a home will receive hot afternoon sun while those on the west or north, will receive less intense morning sun or shade. For more detailed hanging planter how-tos, visit here.
Hanging planters filled in with bright flowers, attractive foliage or fragrant herbs look lovely on a front porch, deck, or outdoor living area. DIY your own hanging planter and you’ll have a beautiful display for family and friends to enjoy all season long.
Interested in more garden planter tips? Visit here.