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The best care for annual hanging baskets

Create blooming vertical layers in your garden and on your porch with colorful hanging baskets! They are a great way to bring color closer to the house. Because they are in a basket instead of the ground they do have different water and nutrient needs, but it’s possible to keep them gorgeous all season long with these four considerations: Water, sun, feeding, and pruning…

WATER:
It can be tricky to know when to water because the hanging baskets are often out of convenient reach for a soil touch test. We recommend watering when the basket feels light to lift. In the early spring this might be once every other day, in the summer it might be twice a day. To prevent loss of shape, do not let your basket get too dry!

EXPOSURE:
Make sure that you hang your basket in a location that gets the correct sun exposure. Full sun baskets should receive more than 6 hours of sun a day, part sun should receive 4-6 hours of sun and shade baskets should receive less than 4. If your plants are looking crispy but you have been watering, the sun might be too harsh for those particular plants.

FEEDING:
Your basket will need food to keep looking nice! Container plants have a limited amount of nutrients available to plants, so feeding them is essential. We recommend using Fertilome Blooming and Rooting Plant Food beginning in June to keep the flowers at full power. Or use a slow release fertilizer, like Osmocote, which will last for 3 months.

PRUNING:
If your basket begins to look scraggly towards the middle of the summer, you can revitalize it by cutting it back! Every branch of the plant you trim, you end up with 2 branches, which doubles the fullness of your basket! By cutting off the growing tips you will help your plants fill in the middle of the basket and it will give your basket a more uniform shape! If you don’t want it to look drastically mowed, simply cut it back a little bit every other week. Leave some of the shorter branches that have flowers on them alone, but prune off the longer ones each time you trim. That way you maintain a beautiful basket all season long!

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