Now that the long anticipated weather has started to improve its time to start thinking about summer planting. No matter what size your outdoor space is there is always room for a basket or pot to bring a splash of colour.
Summer baskets and planters can be planted from April onwards but will need protecting from frosts. In this area of the country (North East) late frosts can still pose a problem into May, therefore holding off until mid or late May is usually safer.
In this blog post we will talk about planting a hanging basket that will last throughout the summer and give beautiful colour to liven up your garden or space.
Firstly choose your colour palette. The more restricted your colour palette is, the greater the impact it will have. Once you have decided which colours you will use you can then choose your plants. If you are not sure then a Gardening Assistant is always on hand to help and advise here at the Garden Centre.
My plants of choice would be Nemesia, with tiny snap-dragon type flowers, sweetly fragranced and a wide variety of colours. This plant will go on and on throughout the season and with a little care and deadheading will continue to produce more flowers. Violas team well as does petunias. For shady areas, fuchsias and begonias would be an excellent choice and most definitely mine as the flowers on the fuchsia are so delicate and pretty, they will also flower throughout the season. But don’t forget the foliage, adding Hedera (ivy) or Nepeta are great for creating bold shapes and ‘bulking out’.
Of course, if you are unsure about what you want or prefer an easy option, we have carry packs providing a mix of plants for baskets and pots.
Next up is compost. Now you only have one chance at success with seasonal planting so ensuring that you use the best quality compost is vital, it will make the difference between success and failure. A good moisture retaining compost such as Miracle Gro Moisture Control, Levingston’s Multi-Purpose with added John Innes or John Innes No. 2 would be perfect.
All you need now is your hanging basket and liner, the liner can be either Coco or ready formed type.
Top tip…. Place your hanging basket on a pot or bucket to keep it steady but not so far in that you can’t plant the sides.
Now comes the creative part!
Your basket will thrive throughout the summer with care from you. Check your baskets every day, watering always unless the compost is wet. As the plants grown and the days are drier and warmer (we hope) the basket will dry out quickly. Using a liquid fertiliser weekly such as Miracle Gro All Purpose or Miracle Go Pour & Feed, for an organic alternative then Vitax Liquid Seaweed would do just fine. Deadheading (picking off the dead flowers) regularly will ensure that your baskets look at their best and bloom all through summer and if you are lucky, into early autumn and the neighbours will be really jealous!!