Thursday, 6 September 2012

Vol 7: Hanging Baskets

Hanging Baskets

Traditionally British, hanging baskets are a garden gem and it’s about time the rest of the world got involved. An easy inexpensive way to brighten up any space!!  If you don’t have that dream garden or anything more than a patio or balcony, hanging baskets will be your saviour!

I have put together a few helpful tips and ideas to create the perfectly colourful talking point of any ourdoor space!

1.       There a few things you will need to get yourself started, these are: a wire basket with a fibre lining, a black plastic lining with filtration holes, compost and of course the flowers. A water retaining gel will help to prevent drying out of the compost to ensure plants have enough moisture.

2.       Ensure that you have some where to hand your basket, a sturdy hook or bracket is recommended, ensure that is it able to take the weight of the full baskets to ensure damage is not done to the wall. If you will have problems reaching the basket for watering or pruning, pulley systems are available from most good garden centres.

   3.       When choosing your flowers it is down to personal choice, do some research in what kind of outcome you would like, colours, flowers, durability and flowering season. If you aim to get a range of colours with plants that flower at various times throughout the season it will ensure that your baskets are colourful for as long as possible.

   4.       If you’re thinking that hanging baskets are a summer accessories then how wrong you are! You can keep that fresh bright colour even during the winter by incorporating plants such as; winter pansies, trailing Ivy and hardy Primroses. Just make sure that you clip of old flower heads to help regeneration.

5.       To avoid a boring hanging basket, plant on the sides of the basket, this will give a more globe like effect and cover the basket lining.

6.       Hanging baskets may need watering more than once a day especially if it is dry weather, this is due to the lack of compost they are in packed into, although the water retaining gel will also help.

7.       Feeding your baskets is also essential; your hanging basket will have many types of plant all of which will be competing for food and water. Using homemade compost is ideal (See Vol: 3), however if you do not have the space for a compost heap you can buy fertilisers from your local garden centre, natural is always better and some are slow release, specifically designed for hanging baskets.

The most important thing to remember about your hanging baskets is to ENJOY them!Don’t be put off with the maintenance, once into a routine its will be so worth it!! Turn your garden, patio or balcony into a bright and beautiful haven all year round.

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