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Tip of the Week: Dress Up a Hanging Basket

Here’s an easy way to make a hanging basket look more lush and colorful. When you’re done, you won’t see the pot at all.
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Fine-leaved and small-flowered familiars like candytuft (Iberis sempervirens) and sweet alyssum (Lobularia maritima) can be inserted in the sides of hanging baskets that are made of a coir or woven liner inside a sturdy wire frame. They make a pretty effect growing outward and spilling their flowers downward, and they help hide the liner.

How to plant them:

  1. Fill the basket with soil to about four inches below the rim and the top of the liner.
  2. On the outside of the liner, cut several three-inch Xs starting four inches down from the rim. The number of Xs depends on the size of the basket and the look you desire. If you want to cover the whole basket, use more Xs. If you just want a few plants sprouting here and there, make two or three Xs. Keep the Xs six inches apart.
  3. Take candytuft and/or alyssum starts (or break up large plants into small clumps with roots). Place them root first into small plastic baggies.
  4. Gently push the bagged roots through the Xs from the outside. The roots are now inside the basket and liner, and the leafy growth is outside the basket.
  5. Remove the bags and add more soil until it reaches an inch below the rim. Firm the soil around the roots and water thoroughly.
  6. When the basket has drained, plant the top with whatever you like, being careful not to dig into the candytuft or alyssum roots.

Tips for keeping hanging baskets healthy all summer

Candytuft image info

Alyssum image info