How to Choose Plants for Your Hanging Baskets

Choosing the plants for your Sphagnum Moss-lined Hanging Baskets is a wonderful way to set the theme of your garden and delight your visitors with a magnificent show of color.  Once you customize your first hanging basket you’ll want to make many more.

Hanging Baskets Featured Image

Project Difficulty


Mosser Lee
Products Needed

What You Will Need

Hanging Wire Basket

Long Fibered Sphagnum Moss


Gardening Gloves

Selected Plants


Selecting the plants for your Sphagnum Moss-lined Hanging Baskets should compliment your growing season and the effect you want to create. Annuals or perennials mixed with complementary foliage can complement the existing features in your landscape. It is important to keep in mind the following points when selecting plants for your hanging basket:

  1. Will the basket be in the shade, broken sunlight, or direct sunlight?
  2. Do you want a full basket immediately or are you willing to wait for the plants to grow?
  3. Does the plant have a cascading or vining effect?
  4. What time of year are you planting? Winter annuals will not do well in the heat of the summer.

If your basket is going to grow outdoors and receive full sun all day, it is best to select plants which love direct sunlight such as: petunias, salvia, geraniums, etc. If your basket will be growing in full shade, choose ivy, fern, begonias or impatiens. Partial light conditions, such as morning shade with afternoon sun or filtered light, is normally best.

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Warm Weather Plants ideas for Hanging Baskets:

Begonia (wax and tuberous)
Vinca minor or Vinca major

Cold Weather Plant ideas for Hanging Baskets:

Sweet Alyssum
Sweet William (Dianthus)


Climbing Rose
English Ivy
Mandevilla “Alice Dupont”
Ivy Geraniums

Tropical Effect:

Boston Fern with Strap Leaf
Spider Plant with Chenile Plant

Many landscape architects are now designing Sphagnum Moss-lined Hanging Baskets in the form of a sphere.These popularly-designed hanging baskets can be seen in many main streets throughout the United States andCanada. Most are planted with impatiens or begonias. When planting a hanging basket to look like a colorful sphere, make sure that the basket contains more than one color. Multiple shades of the same color family look especially attractive (e.g., red, purple and pink).

Some other unique combinations of plants include impatiens with browallia; poinsettia with fern; and ivy geranium with English ivy.

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How to Choose Plants for Your Hanging Baskets