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Best plants for hanging baskets

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When looking for the best way to frame your wooden garden dining set, you can do no better than surrounding it with bright, colourful hanging baskets.  You may be surrounded by the wood of your decking or the slabs of your patio, but there is no reason you cannot add a blast of colour with some of the best plants for hanging baskets.

You may worry that a hanging basket takes too much care and may meet an early demise in your hands.  However, they are not as hard as they seem, and a lot is gained from choosing the right plants and positioning from the start.  Here are our best tips for the best plants for hanging baskets to get you started.

Geraniums

We start with a traditional choice because sometimes the best ideas are the ones that most gardeners go for.  Geraniums are a great starter plant for those trying to establish hanging baskets for the first time.  You will get a beautiful cascade of flowers that will look perfect by your door or over your decking.

Fuchsias

These will give your basket a touch of the exotic.  The flowers will hang delicately and are relatively hardy.  It is best to keep them out of the frost if you want them to grow next year.  However, this is the beauty of a hanging basket, as when the summer bloom comes to an end, we can bring them indoors or store them in the greenhouse.  You will get the best value from a collection of different fuchsias, and a lot come in pre-selected mixes by people who know how to create a grand colour scheme.

Petunias

When you are mixing flowers, not every flower can be the scene-stealer, but the petunias offer a backdrop that will always bring a smile to your face.  To be fair, these flowers are not shy.  They come in a startling purple.  It is just the flowers which are a basic star shape.

Lobelia

This is one of those flowers that will cascade over the edge of your basket.  You will need other flowers to offer height, but this will definitely provide a dramatic dangle and tangle.  The flowers are small, though they are vast in number.  If you would like a flower to last the summer, then choose ‘Hot Pretty Heaven’, and you won’t be disappointed.

Osteospermum

We chose this plant because it sounds like a hip complaint your mother might moan about.  We also chose it because it lasts well in dry conditions.  If you are one of those people who forget to look up when watering the plants, then this is an excellent addition to your hanging basket.  We like them more because the flowers are vibrant, vital and strangely child-like.  These plants spread like mad, so they will very quickly drape down and create an incredible display of some impressively attractive flowers.

Verbena

You can get a mix of Verbena that displays the colours of the union jack, if you fancy making a basket for the Cricket World Cup, the Women’s Football World Cup, or maybe if you are lucky, the Rugby World Cup in the early autumn.  The good thing about Verbena is that they grow in a compact form, so unlike other hanging basket plants, these will keep a lovely shape.  If you prefer a neater and tidier basket, this might be the best choice for you.

Nasturtiums

We chose these for this list because they are so easy to grow.  If your version of gardening is to plant and forget, then these will likely be your best flowery friend.  They come in a beautiful variety of colours, so you can have your multi-coloured display without worrying about how to manage the many conditions preferred by different plants.

Begonia

The big frilly flowers dangle perfectly from the stems to add some drama to your hanging basket. The stems are thick, and these will keep flowering no matter the weather.  As well as being perfect for your hanging basket, these will go well in your beds too.  Begonias are something of a favourite of ours, so they had to find their way into our list – they are so hardy that you have to put the effort in if you don’t want them to thrive.

Anna Sharples

Anna is the marketing and office manager for Garden Benches - a premium supplier of high-quality wooden benches and other outdoor furniture.

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