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How to create a summer hanging basket

You will need

  • 1 Ipomoea 'Sweet Caroline'
  • 3 Calibrachoa 'Million Bells Cherry'
  • 1 Osteospermum 'Tresco Purple'
  • 6 Diascia 'Red Ace'
  • 36cm metalware basket, grass clippings
  • Multi-purpose compost or peat-free alternative
  • Water-retaining gel, 9cm plastic pot
  • Slow-release fertiliser
Do it: May - June
At its best: July - September


This eye catching orange-themed summer basket features diascia, fuchsia and heuchera, and is easy to make. Choose a pre-moulded coir basket to make it even more simple. It doesn't really matter which plants you use, as long as you have some to fill the centre, plus trailing plants to spill gracefully over the sides.

How to do it


Prop the basket on a bucket and line it with moist grass clippings. Alternatively you can buy a pre-moulded coir basket. To help retain moisture add a layer of plastic inside this.


Snip a few drainage holes into the plastic, then fill the basket two-thirds full with compost (mixed with water-retaining gel). Plant the tallest plants off centre.


Plant the trailing plants around the edge, where their flowers will quickly grow over the sides.


It's important to keep plants well fed, so give them a boost of liquid plant food, such as tomato fertiliser, at this stage.


Give your plants a good water, and allow to drain before hanging the basket in its final position.

Our tip

Choose a sunny spot for your hanging basket, although some shade for part of the day will take the pressure off watering.

Remember to water your baskets at least once a day, or more frequently, when it's hot and dry or windy.

Discuss this project

Talkback: How to create a summer hanging basket
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kahita 24/11/2011 at 15:27

Living in The Netherlands now and just starting a small garden.
The ground is full of weeds but I am full of determination.

I want to sit outside, eat a home grown salad and enjoy looking at my flowers.

it might take a while but it will be fun, and can all help me.

mark67 24/11/2011 at 15:28

As this year is my first at doing hanging baskets it is nice to see wot i need to be doing to my first year go with a bang. And a big thanks to you all for the plants i can try again thank you.

Containergarden 24/11/2011 at 15:28

I love the idea of using a small pot as a reservoir. Also, have never used or seen grass clippings used to line a basket. What a great and super-green idea. I'll have to try it.

I don't use water retaining crystals because they are made of polyacrylamide which, some studies have shown, is a potential carcinogen.

Rose13 24/11/2011 at 15:29

As I'm quite new to this gardening malarky I'm in ever need of tips & advice so step by step directions with pictures is a great help to me. thanks :)

DaisyDebs 14/06/2012 at 22:18

Tresco Purple Osteos tend to flower well in the spring and then only one or two throughout the rest of the year ,in my experience ..but there are lots of new types out there now which may do better ....the sprawling common white one would lend itself really well to being planted up in a hanging basket . Just brought my baskets into shelter from this wild weather .( in Cornwall )

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