Your flowering hanging baskets and containers can bloom and thrive for many months – with a little help from you. Follow these easy guidelines to keep your plants healthy and beautiful throughout the season!
This is the task most critical to the success of your container plants! All plants do not become dry at the same time even if they are all the same variety. Water when soil is barely moist. Soil just under the surface will feel cool, but not wet or muddy. Lift up on bottom of hanging pots to see how heavy they feel when fully watered. You will begin to be able to judge when plants need watering by the weight of the pot. In general, a 10” diameter hanging basket will use 16 to 32 oz. of water per day. Water until the excess runs out the drain holes. If your basket becomes so dry that the root ball has shrunk away from the sides of the pot, the water will quickly run out the drain hole, fooling you into thinking the basket is thoroughly watered when, in fact, the water is bypassing the roots. The best way to expand the root ball is to submerge the basket up to its rim in a bucket of water for several hours.
Flower Pouches require long, slow watering. Make sure the water runs out of the bottom drain holes. The entire pouch should feel cool after a thorough watering.
CHECK CONTAINERS DAILY! Water early enough to allow foliage to dry by evening, reducing fungal problems.
Container plants are dependent upon you for food. Frequent watering washes nutrients out of the soil. Use Osmocote, a 4 month slow-release fertilizer or Jack’s Classic Blossom Booster, a water soluble fertilizer. Follow package directions. The trailing petunias and calibrachoas we plant in our hanging baskets are varieties developed from cuttings, not from seed. We added Osmocote to these plants when we planted them; however, because they grow and bloom so vigorously, they will need additional weekly fertilizing with either Jack’s Classic Blossom Booster or Jack’s Classic Petunia Feed for abundant blooms and healthy green foliage.
With proper watering and fertilizing, your basket plants will flower so much that you may need to remove dead flowers and seed pods. This helps keep the plant looking its best and gives you an opportunity to inspect for any pest or disease problems.