Choosing which plants to grow in your hanging baskets needed be a tricky task, there are plenty of traditional and modern varieties to give you a display to be proud of!
There's nothing quite as captivating in a garden as seeing as a full, cascading hanging basket, overflowing with colour with the flowers catching the sun. Planting up a hanging basket is not as daunting as you may think, we have handy video guides and now we even have our fantastic BloomAround Hanging Basket which actually makes it very easy to create a stunning display!.
Choosing which pre-planted hanging basket plants to display is really down to personal choice of colour, variety and trailing habit, do you want long trailing stems full of blooms that can grow down 60cm or more, or would you prefer a ball of colour hanging outside your front door?
If you're not sure, here are our top ten basket plants for you to choose from this season:
Instantly recognisable with their large blowsy blooms that hang pendulously from the thick stems, begonia tuberhybrida are one of our most popular basket and bedding plants. They are incredibly easy to grow and will give you a full season of colour. Varieties such as Begonia 'Apricot Shades Improved' will trail down over 45cm and will keep on flowering no matter what the weather so that you will always have sunshine shades of apricot and lemon even on the cloudiest of days! Other brightly coloured varieties include Begonia 'Non-stop Mocca' with its colourful flowers contrasting beautifully against the dark foliage, or the impressive Begonia 'Majestic Mixed' with huge double blooms reaching up to 20cm across!
Exotic looking flowers drip down through the summer from these amazing plants; fuchsias are very tough hanging basket plants that are also semi hardy, so that they can be kept in a frost free place over winter and grow again the following year! Fuchsias are a well known and very popular plant that has been developed from a hardy shrub in beds and borders to wonderful trailing varieties such as Fuchsia 'Purple Rain' or Fuchsia 'White King' that will fill a basket easily and be smothered in fantastic blooms! If you're unsure of which particular variety to choose then there's always our pre-selected mixes, especially the Fuchsia 'Giant Flowered Collection' for some really impressive floral displays!
Petunias have developed hugely in recent years, still available in simple, single colours that look amazing when planted in a single basket and hang down in huge drifts of colour, there are also some fantastic new varieties that really add a huge 'wow' factor to your summer displays. Petunia 'Night Sky' has become a firm customer favourite, an amazing variety that sports random white âstarsâ set against a deep purple background, no two flowers are ever the same and planted en masse they create their own galaxy! Two tone petunias are also becoming very popular too, the Petunia 'Amore' varieties where two adjoining petals form lovely heart shapes in different colours make a wonderful display, as do the customer favourite, Petunia 'Frills and Spills Mixed' with a riot of frilled, picotee and two tone blooms that fill a basket with cascading colour, even in our British summers!
Often used as a âfiller plantâ in mixed displays, Bacopa is a valuable plant in hanging baskets, it is easy to grow and will comfortably trail down well over 45cm, smothered in small blue or white flowers. These dainty looking yet incredibly tough plants are perfect for adding to colour themed baskets Bacopa 'Snowtopia' with its pure white blooms or Bacopa 'Blutopia' for a blue coloured or mixed display.
A full season of amazing colours come from annual lobelia, it cascades over the edge of hanging baskets and patio containers as if it was made for the task! The small flowers appear in such vast numbers on each plant that it can look like a single block of colour from a distance. Single coloured varieties, such as Lobelia 'Regatta Midnight Blue' create a dazzling cascade of violet-blue flowers, each with a tiny gleaming white eye while one of the newer varieties, Lobelia 'Hot Pretty Heaven' has been bred to keep flowering all through the summer and produces beautiful bi-coloured blooms of pale blue and white even in the hottest of weather!
A miniature version of the petunia often referred to as 'minitunia', these prolific flowering basket plants are becoming more and more popular every year. The long lasting and free flowering plants are just as vigorous as their larger cousins but are absolutely covered in much smaller, dainty flowers. Calibrachoa are tolerant to summer showers and will grow really well in both sun and shade, making them ideal for growing in a duller area of the garden that needs cheering up! Varieties such as 'Mini Rosebud Romantic Peachy' will delight you with its delicate flowers of peach and pink, each with contrasting veining and as a bonus, they don't even need dead-heading, they literally look after themselves! For a true kaleidoscope of colour, try Minitunia 'Kabloom Mixed', which as its name suggests, explodes with colour during the summer months!
A traditional summer bedding plant that is known by all gardeners, old and new, geraniums are drought tolerant, tough plants that grow well in hanging baskets where sometimes watering is 'overlooked'. Often seen in their bright red form in varieties such as Geranium 'Best Red' F1 Hybrid , these easy to grow plants are now available in a variety of colours and have also been bred to trail well over the side of a hanging basket. Geranium 'GeRainbow Mixed' has cascades of colour and larger blooms and look incredible as they fill a hanging basket with bright blooms. The Geranium 'Rosebud Collection' will also trail down at least 45cm and are so named because the blooms never fully open and so always seem to look like rosebuds waiting to flower, a wonderful sight indeed!
Osteospermum are naturally drought tolerant which makes them ideal for baskets and pots. Normal African Daisies can also be planted in hanging baskets as their spreading habit will make them spill over the edge of the basket and form more of a ball shape, planting up a basket with the Osteospermum 3D Collection will definitely give you a display of unusual and extremely attractive flowers!
For a plant that's incredibly easy to grow from seed and can grow up to 100cm long, then why not try nasturtiums in your baskets? The colour variety is phenomenal from creamy white to deep maroon and loads in between, including some that actually change colour! Whilst some Nasturtiums, such as 'Dwarf Compact Mixed' will stay relatively small (although still enough to fill a basket!), others, such as Nasturtium 'Troika Spotty Dotty' will hang down over a metre and constantly produce golden yellow blooms with striking red flashes inside. For the truly unusual, try Nasturtium 'Chameleon' , whose orchid like blooms change from pale yellow to a pinky-red colour over a few days, it needs to be seen to be believed!
Colourful displays are guaranteed with Verbena in your hanging baskets. These totally carefree, easy to grow plants, come highly recommended and can provide a stunning mix of shades in both pots and baskets. They tend to have a more compact growing habit and so will form masses of flowers that gently spill over the edge of their container. Verbena 'Quartz Mixed' look absolutely fabulous planted up in hanging baskets or for a more patriotic display try our Union Jack Mixed too!