Hanging baskets filled with cascading flowers add color and beauty to a room, porch or outdoor landscape. The temperate weather in the UK is ideal for growing a number of annuals in hanging baskets. By using a good potting soil that drains well and hanging your baskets of flowers in a place that gets plenty of sun and has good air flow, you can easily maintain baskets of flowering annuals.
Edging, or cascading, lobelia is a small annual plant that grows to 6 inches tall before it begins to trail. It can form a cascading mat, a trailing mat, or a mounding clump. Lobelia varieties include plants with darker flowers with have deeply bronzed or dark burgundy foliage. Flowers can be blue, purple, mauve, white, light blue or pink. Lobelia grows best in full to partial sun, and will do best in the UK in a south-facing window. Native to southern Africa, lobelia will only grow as an indoor potted plant for about a year.
Sweet peas are climbing flowers that work well in a hanging basket. Growing from 4 to 12 inches long, these annuals produce white, pink, purple or red blossoms between June and September. Plant in full sun, for example, in a south-facing window or hanging outside in a place that isn't shaded. They need adequate air flow for optimum health, so keeping them outside on a sunny porch may work well. Although traditional sweet peas bloom in late summer or early fall, newer hybrids are spring or summer flowering. As an annual, you will need to re-plant your basket of sweet peas every year.
Another cascading flower that will grow well in hanging baskets in the UK is the petunia. There are two types of petunia: upright and cascading. Cascading petunias are good in baskets. Petunias are available in almost any color, including red, white, purple and blue. Cascading petunia grandiflora have larger flowers than other upright versions. Petunias need at least six hours of direct light per day. They will do even better if placed in full sun for the entire day.