What are the secrets to success with hanging baskets and containers?
Size of container, proper watering, proper feeding. It’s that simple!
Bigger is better!
It’s simple: a larger pot = more soil for plants. This is especially important in the summer, when plants typically grow quickly and need lots of water and nutrients. Don’t be afraid to transplant smaller pots into bigger ones as they grow. Just ensure adequate drainage in the new pot and use a good quality potting mix.
Water thoroughly every time and wait until the soil is dry before watering again. Your pots should be checked every day. If using a hose, make sure to use a watering wand with a soft rain nozzle. “Power washing” your containers or flooding them out will do your plants no favours, just beat them up! Watering is best done early in the morning, allowing the foliage to dry before the sun is too intense. If watering again later in the day, be sure to do it earlier in the evening to ensure adequate drying time before dark. This will help to prevent foliar diseases.
Containers provide a small space for roots compared to gardens, so be sure to feed your planters well. Using and balanced slow-release fertilizer helps to ensure fertility throughout the season. Use a water-soluble fertilizer regularly to give an extra boost to flowering plants. Generally, a higher “Middle Number” in the NPK ratio is best for flowering baskets. Fertilize after watering so the soil is already moist, not dry.
Other Maintenance Tips for Beautiful Containers
- Dead head regularly– remove spent blooms
- Trim to keep tidy and promote branching
- Scout for and treat for diseases and insects as soon as possible – products such as Safers 3-in-1 are useful for an array of pests.
- Protect sensitive plants from late frosts and strong winds
Most importantly…. sit back and enjoy!