What is the best hanging basket liner

Plant a flowering hanging basket

  • 01 of 07

    Insert the basket liner

    You have several options to lay out your feeder baskets. Coco coconut or moss liners are the most commonly used materials and offer great drainage and aesthetics. Some retailers offer premium basket inserts that increase the water retention of flower baskets, such as the MagniMoist liner. These liners are more expensive than traditional coco-coir liners, but can improve the performance of drought-sensitive plants like fuchsias. The cheapest liner is one that you make from layers of burlap that will match your flower box.

  • 02 of 07

    Use a watering helper

    Most garden centers line the bottom of the coco-liner to prevent excess water from running out of the bottom of the basket during watering. You can put a plastic tray, piece of plastic trash bag, or even a new disposable diaper in the bottom of the liner to increase water retention. If you want to line the entire piece of coconut for maximum water retention, cut multiple holes in the liner to allow drainage and air circulation unless you're growing bog flowers.

  • 03 of 07

    Add potting soil

    Choosing a good quality potting soil is the most important step in creating a healthy hanging basket. Garden soil is too heavy and can carry pathogens that can infect your flowers. Choose a lightweight soil mix specifically designed for hanging baskets. The mix should have a mix of organic ingredients that will feed your plants, such as compost, humus, earthworm cast or leaf mold, and inorganic ingredients that lighten the soil, such as perlite or vermiculite. Moisten the soil and add more before you start planting.

  • 04 of 07

    Choose a focal plant

    The first plant you put in the hanging basket will be a focal point in the design, so choose one with a long flowering time and vigorous performance. An Angelonia, Salvia or Celosia would be an eye catcher in the middle of your basket. These plants have upright growth habits with spiky flowers and will not be lost in the jungle as your plants mature.

  • 05 of 07

    Arrange trailing flowers

    Surround your focus plant with flowers that have spreading and trailing habits. These plants quickly fill in white spots, giving you a full look with fewer plants. Petunias, verbenas, portulaca, and millions of bells are some powerful plants to be placed around the edges of your basket. If your basket hangs over your reach, choose varieties that don't require deadheads to make maintenance tasks easier.

  • 06 of 07

    Plants basket sides

    An optional step, but one that will be the fastest to reward you with a "flowering ball", is planting trailing flowers on the sides of the basket. In the case of small baskets, the flowers planted on the edge of the basket cover the sides within a few weeks. Larger baskets, however, will require some tags that are planted directly into the liner. You can plant the same trailing plants on the edge of the basket for the sides. Use a utility knife to cut several slots in the sides of your basket. Grasp small grafts through the root ball, insert the root ball into the slot. Don't worry about damaging the plant, the root ball can take quite a bit of manhandling. Be careful not to grab the graft by the stem, as it can break easily.
  • 07 of 07

    Pour water thoroughly

    Pour the newly planted basket until you see a drain. Expect to water your hanging baskets daily, maybe even twice a day if hot, dry conditions persist. When you water in the morning, wet the foliage as well to discourage spider mites. Fertilize your baskets twice a month to keep them looking healthy throughout the season.