Go Wild with Hanging Flower Baskets for Mother’s Day
During my days as market grower, one of our most popular items were our hanging baskets for Mother’s Day. What made these colorful floating gardens so popular was not only their beauty as a whole, but also their nectar-rich blooms that attracted hummingbirds and butterflies.
This week I will once again be making a few baskets, keeping in mind essential tips that will ensure a basket to impress; all the products needed were picked up at my local Kmart store. Annuals both upright and trailing provide fast seasonal color and instant attraction. A few of my favorites for their nectar-rich blooms include dianthus, geranium (Pelargonium spp.) petunia, lantana, nasturtiums, petunias, rose moss (Portulaca grandiflora), scaevola, sedum, and creeping zinnia (Sanvitalia procumbens). Other annual options are begonia, fuchsia, lobelia, phlox, salvia, million bells (Calibrachoa spp.), and four-o-clock (Mirabilis spp.).
For a basket that “wows” it’s important to combine different leaf shapes or forms along with different textures–soft and fuzzy, lacy, coarse, or bold, for example. Combining plants of different heights will bring depth and visual interest. In other words, place mounding or upright plants towards the pot’s center, with trailing plants spilling over the sides. You’ll need about five to seven plants to fill a 12-inch diameter hanging basket.
Fill baskets 2/3 full with a lightweight, pre-moistened potting mix. Place plants, starting at the center, and firm in with additional potting mix. Water well and hang in a sunny, sheltered location within easy viewing so you can appreciate the hummingbirds and butterflies up close.
Happy Mother’s Day Everyone! – Kris Wetherbee
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