Hanging baskets filled with bright blooms and lush foliage create a stunning presence to the garden. Summer plants for hanging baskets often have a billowing, trailing effect that creates a full look to the container. They produce masses of blooms throughout the summer and often into the fall for a constant source of vibrancy to the landscape.
Wild petunia (Petunia integrifolia) is an annual flower that is suitable in all USDA zones. It produces masses of 1 ½ inch-wide trumpet-shaped blooms that are violet to pale lavender. Beginning in May, wild petunia blooms to last until the first frost, creating a long-lasting blooming season. Wild petunias have a rapid growth rate to fill up the hanging basket in a short period of time. They reach up to 3 feet tall and produce a billowing effect to the container. Wild petunia grows best in full sun only and well-drained, loamy soil. They require a moderate amount of moisture but do not require deadheading.
Verbena (Verbena speciosa "Imagination") is a summer-blooming annual flower that produces masses of cluster-like purple flowers. They have a spreading growth habit and vigorous growth rate that keeps the hanging basket colorful all summer long. Verbena grows 1 to 3 feet in height and has a spread of 3 to 6 feet. Hardy, they are both drought- and frost-tolerant to create low-maintenance flower. The deep green foliage is dissected and has a trailing effect that looks attractive cascading over the container. Verbena requires full sun and well-drained soil with a monthly dose of fertilizer. To grow in other areas of the garden, divide verbena in spring. They grow in all USDA zones.
Cape fuchsia (Phygelius "Blacher" Cherry Ripe) is a woody-based perennial that is semi-evergreen and suitable in USDA zones 7 to 10. Beginning in May and lasting into September, the five-lobed, tubular-shaped flowers emerge. Cape fuchsia flowers are cherry red with a creamy yellow throat that lights up a hanging basket with color and texture. They grow 24 to 36 inches tall and wide, and have a clumping growth habit that makes an ideal plant to grow within containers. The lance- to oval-shaped leaves on cape fuchsia leaves are pale green and grow up to 3 inches long. They grow best in full sun, although tolerate some shade. Cape fuchsia require rich, well-drained soil that is moist. To promote a long flowering season, deadhead the spent fuchsia blooms as soon as they are noticeable.