How to Fill a Hanging Basket


A hanging basket can add a beautiful touch of greenery anywhere in your home, inside or out. An arrangement of blooming flowers elegantly spilling over the sides of the basket and cascading down creates an elegant decorative display. You can use hanging baskets to enhance your seasonal decorating by replacing annuals every few months. There is a bit of an art to making attractive hanging baskets, but one well done will rival a professional vase arrangement from any flower shop.

Step 1

Remove your basket from its hanger and place it on a work surface. Dispose of any old growing medium and plants.

Step 2

Line your basket if it is a woven or wire open design. You can use a coconut husk liner, or apply a layer of dampened sphagnum moss. If your pot is made of plastic or some other nonporous material, be sure it has enough drainage holes.

Step 3

Mix a lightweight growing medium for your planter. You can use straight compost if you like. An all-purpose mixture suitable for most plants that you can make yourself consists of equal parts potting soil, peat moss and perlite. You can also add a slow-release fertilizer to your growing medium so that it will continue to feed your plants.

Step 4

Select your plants. Plants that are full with a gentle bend to their stems, or plants that overhang and trail down the sides of a pot, look particularly attractive in a hanging pot. Avoid using plants that grow more than 18 inches tall. Some good choices for hanging baskets are impatiens, ivy, torenia, pansy, viola, coleus, calendula, begonia, petunia and lobelia.

Step 5

Fill your basket halfway up with growing medium using a hand trowel. Place your seedlings, still in their pots, into the basket and arrange them as you please. You can use one type of plant, planting seedlings closer to the edge to make them appear fuller. Combine plants if you prefer, using bushier plants in the center of the basket for height and fullness, with trailers around the edge.

Step 6

Dig small holes in the soil where your starter plants will go. Dampen your starter plants. Slide them out of the pots and place them in the holes you have created for them. Continue filling around them with medium, tamping down very gently, until the hanging basket is full.

Step 7

Water the hanging basket until water begins to seep through. Rehang your plant for display. Turn your hanging basket every few days to prevent all of the plants growing to one side, making it look lopsided.

Things You'll Need

  • Hanging basket
  • Basket liner
  • Growing medium
  • Slow-release fertilizer
  • Hand trowel
  • Starter plants


  • "The Container Expert"; Dr. D. G. Hessayon; 1995
  • Hanging Baskets Page
  • Hanging Baskets Page
Keywords: hanging baskets, hanging planter, filling a hanging basket

About this Author

Mackenzie Wright has been freelancing for the last 8 years in the arts of writing, painting, photography, crafts, and teaching classes on the arts. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and Education. Her writing has been featured in publications such as the Saint Petersburg Times, South Florida Parenting Magazine, and Home Education Magazine.