Hanging baskets can beautify a porch or balcony with a bright burst of colour. There are several kinds of flowers that grow well in hanging baskets. When planning a basket, select similar flowers in different colours or a selection of different colours and textures. Green foliage such as ivy or ferns make a nice accent. When choosing flowers for a basket, ensure that all of the flowers have similar sunlight and water requirements.
Petunias are divided into two types: grandiflora and multiflora (large-flowered and many-flowered). Petunias are technically perennials, though they are frequently grown as annuals. These flowers perform best in USDA hardiness zones 9 to 10. Petunias come in a wide variety of colours and may feature stripes or splotches. Petunias need full sun to grow and can be tricky to grow from seed. Grandiflora petunias work better in hanging baskets than multiflora, but either will grow.
Pansies are members of the violet family. Like the petunia, pansies are most often grown as annuals even though they are perennials. Older varieties of pansy sport yellow, purple and white hues; newer pansies come in a wider array of colours. Pansies will work in either part shade or full sun and can be grown in hardiness zones 7 to 10.
Bidens is known commonly as butterfly needles or shepherd's needles. Bidens prefers full sun and grow best in hardiness zones 7 to 10. This plant has small yellow or white flowers. When planting in hanging baskets, look for the trailing form of this plant.
Commonly known as fairy fanflower, scaevola is a sprawling perennial that flowers throughout the spring and summer. Scaevola can develop white, blue or purple flowers one inch in diameter. This plant can be grown in hardiness zones 9 to 11 and either in full sun or light shade.
Nasturtium is a bright edible flower with a peppery flavour. Nasturtium flowers may be orange, yellow, scarlet or pink. All have five petals. Nasturtium thrives in either part shade or full sun. These trailing plants work very well in hanging baskets but may need to be trimmed periodically. Nasturtium is easily grown from seed. Avoid purchasing nasturtium from the Gleam series; these are trailing and may grow up to five feet long.
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