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13 Best perennials for hanging baskets

Why perennials?

Perennials are plants that will return year after year. Having to buy new annuals (plants that only live one year) each year can be costly. By using perennials in hanging baskets, you won’t need to replace them every spring.

How to plant perennials in hanging baskets:

  1. Decide on what size hanging baskets you want to use
  2. Buy small perennials for hanging basket(s)
  3. Decide how many perennials you want to put in each hanging basket, we recommend one or two, but you can do more
  4. Place a liner made from natural materials in the basket
  5. Fill half of hanging basket with soil
  6. Take perennial plant out of its store container and place in soil of hanging basket
  7. Fill in remaining space with soil
  8. Water plant thoroughly
  9. Hang the basket in a desired location

Picking perennials

The best perennials for hanging baskets are the ones that you enjoy!

There are many options to choose from, but those that are short are most ideal. This means picking plants that are no more then 12 inches high. All of the plants on this list are short and suited for containers. Plus the majority of the plants on this list are native and pollinator friendly-- what's not to love?

Here are the 13 best perennials for hanging baskets:

Dwarf Crested Iris

Dwarf crested iris is one of the best perennials for hanging baskets because its flowers are best up close. With unique blossoms, you will want to take a closer look to see their detail.

Zones: 3 to 9
Sun exposure: Full sun to part shade
Mature height: up to 10 inches
Water: Average
Best for woodlands, borders, and containers

Painted Trillium

Painted trillium makes for a good hanging basket perennial because it's small enough to fit. It also has beautiful detail that is best up close. Painted trillium is low maintenance and easy to grow.

Sun exposure: Full shade
Zones: 3 to 9
Mature height: up to 8 inches
Water: Average
Best for woodland gardens, alpine gardens, containers, and shaded borders


Bird’s Foot Violet

Bird's foot violet is one of the best perennials for hanging baskets because it has plenty of blossoms each year. It is a resilient plant that can withstand changes in weather and is happy as long as it has occasional shade.

Zones: 4 to 8
Mature height: up to 8 inches
Sun exposure: Full sun or part shade
Mature height: up to 6 inches
Water: average
Best for woodland edges, in front of borders and containers


Purple Violet

Purple violet is a great perennials for hanging baskets because it is small and easy to grow. It also shows off vibrant shades of purple as it blooms from late spring until fall. With its unique foliage, you may not ever need another hanging basket plant again.

Zones: 3 to 9
Sun exposure: Full sun or part shade
Mature height: up to 8 inches
Water: average
Best for woodland gardens, alpine gardens, containers, and borders


White Violets

White violets are some of the best perennials for hanging baskets because their green leaves make the white blossoms pop. The violets look especially nice when planted together with other violets. Plus, they are super easy to maintain!

Zones: 3 to 8
Sun exposure: Full sun or part shade
Mature height: up to 8 inches
Water: Average
Best for woodland gardens, moon gardens, alpine gardens, containers, and borders


Wild Ginger

Wild ginger is an ideal container plant because it is low maintenance and it adds green to any arrangement. This plant can be planted with another flower to add interest to a hanging basket.

Sun exposure: Full shade
Zones: 4 to 8
Mature height: up to 12 inches
Water: average to wet
Best for woodlands, shaded gardens, under trees or shrubs, and in containers


European Ginger

The European ginger is another one of the best perennials for hanging baskets because its foliage will steal the show. In addition to its mellow ginger scent, this plant can fill in any container with its lush foliage.

Sun exposure: part shade to full shade
Zones: 4 to 8
Mature height: up to 8 inches
Water: medium to wet
Best for woodlands, shaded gardens, under trees or shrubs, and in containers


Virginia Spring Beauty

The delicate flowers of the Virginia spring beauty make this another plant you will want to see up close. It is obvious why this is one of the best perennials for hanging baskets; the flowers are almost too beautiful to be real! 

Sun exposure: Full sun to part shade
Zones: 4 to 9
Mature height: up to 8 inches
Water: Average
Best for woodland gardens, alpine gardens, borders, and containers


Twinleaf

The twinleaf is another hanging basket perennial that is almost too good to be true. Its cupped flowers sit just above its dark green foliage. With a short but full growth habit, the twinleaf would look good in any hanging basket.

Sun exposure: Full shade
Zones: 5 to 7
Mature height: up to 8 inches
Water: Average to moist
Best for woodland gardens, front of borders, edges, and containers


Hepatica

The hepatica looks similar to the twinleaf, but is even shorter. It makes for one of the best perennials for hanging baskets because of its many sparkly, white blossoms. 
 
Sun exposure: Part sun to part shade
Zones: 4 to 8
Mature height: up to 6 inches
Water: Average
Best for woodlands, edges, front of borders, and containers


Vinca Minor

While vinca minor is most often used as a groundcover, it looks wonderful in containers and hanging baskets. Its purple flowers will fill in and trail from any hanging basket as long as it has plenty of sun. 

Sun exposure: Full sun
Zones: 4 to 9
Mature height: up to 6 inches
Water: Average
Best for front of borders, containers, and as groundcover


Creeping Buttercup

Creeping buttercup is most often grown on the ground, but why not bring it up a notch? Children are transfixed by these delicate flowers for a reason-- they are beautiful and memorable. Why let kids have all the when you can enjoy them up close in a hanging basket!

Zones: 3 to 9
Sun exposure: Full sun or part shade
Mature height: up to 10 inches
Water: Average
Best for woodlands, borders, or as a groundcover

Check out the Creeping Buttercup product page here


Bluets

The overlooked bluets are one of the best perennials for hanging baskets because they have such delicate flowers. They pair nicely with violets, buttercups, or the dwarf crested iris. 

Sun exposure: Part sun to part shade
Zones: 3 to 8
Mature height: up to 6 inches
Water: Dry to average
Best for from of borders, woodland gardens, edges, and containers

How to take care of perennials in hanging baskets in the fall:

Now that you have some ideas of what to plant, here is a short care guide for hanging basket perennials.

Because perennials will return the following year, they will require some maintenance and care if planted in a hanging basket or container.

If you have other containers that you plant perennials in, treat the plant in the hanging basket the same as those. If not, we suggest you consider doing the following:

  1. Take hanging baskets down
  2. Dig a half circle in the ground
  3. Remove the plant together with the natural materials liner
  4. Place the plant with liner into the hole so it is level with the ground
  5. In spring, pick the plant up and replace the liner before reinserting it into hanging basket
  6. The plant may need to be divided or thinned if it becomes too large for the hanging basket
Or you can try this method:

 

  1. Take hanging baskets down
  2. Place baskets in greenhouse, shed, or basement
  3. Make sure you water the plants occasionally throughout winter
  4. In spring, take plants outside again and rehang 

 

We hope this list gave you some ideas and the inspiration to make your own perennial hanging baskets. Whether you are a customer or not, feel free to reach out to us with any questions you might have!

Creeping Buttercup

Creeping Buttercup

Creeping Buttercup is a low-growing, perennial weed with bright yellow, glossy flowers and creeping stems making it a favorite for low-maintenance landscaping.. This versatile perennial herb, native to Europe and Asia, has attractive characteristics that make it a valuable addition to various garden settings. Creeping Buttercup is most admired for its ability to form a dense ground cover. Its creeping habit allows it to spread rapidly, creating a lush carpet of bright green foliage. This makes it an excellent choice for filling in bare spots or covering large areas where other plants may struggle to establish themselves. Furthermore, the plant's dense growth can help suppress weed growth, reducing the need for excessive welding and thus promoting a more low-maintenance landscape. Another significant advantage of it is its adaptability to various soil conditions. It can thrive in moist and moderately dry soils, making it a suitable option for areas with varying degrees of moisture. This adaptability also extends to its tolerance for different light levels, as it can grow in full sun and partial shade. Its ability to withstand diverse environmental conditions offers flexibility in landscaping choices and can fill niches where other plants may struggle. Moreover, its bright yellow flowers, which emerge in spring, add color to the landscape. These cheerful blooms attract pollinators, such as bees and butterflies, helping to support local biodiversity and ecosystem health. The plant's flowers can also be a delightful visual feature, mainly when spread across a larger area. Beyond its ornamental value, it can play a role in erosion control. Its extensive root system helps stabilize soil and reduce erosion, particularly on slopes or areas prone to water runoff. This makes it a suitable choice for eco-friendly landscaping projects that aim to minimize the negative impacts of erosion on local waterways and ecosystems. In conclusion, creeping buttercup has several benefits when used in landscaping. Its ability to form a dense ground cover, adapt to various soil and light conditions, provide vibrant yellow flowers for pollinators, and aid in erosion control make it a valuable asset for enhancing the aesthetic appeal and ecological health of gardens and green spaces. Landscapers and gardeners can harness the unique attributes of it to create visually appealing, functional, and sustainable landscapes.  Get your Creeping Buttercup at TN Nursery today! Ranunculus Repens, or Creeping Buttercup Plant, is a beautiful herbaceous perennial that can be enjoyed year after year with very little maintenance, providing good ground cover. This low-maintenance flower is perfect for flower beds, lawns, and borders. For a seasonal flower patch, the plant is hearty enough to withstand regular mowing when the flowers are dormant during the off-season. Each Creeping Buttercup Plant will grow to a height of approximately 18 inches. Gorgeous yellow flowers will crown the thin stems for up to four months. The leaves of the Creeping Buttercup Plant are a luscious green with three hairy lobes. The plants will bloom in late spring and continue through summer from May to August, making them the perfect complement to both early and late bloomers to ensure beautiful flowers all year.  The Flowers are a vivid yellow, borne in small clusters. Each flower will have five shiny overlapping petals and will open to a diameter of roughly 1 inch. They are very aromatic, which makes them a great addition to a bouquet and a terrific attractant to pollinators. Bees make for a healthy garden, which the Creeping Buttercup Plant will attract in droves! Keeping Creeping Buttercup Plants healthy requires little effort. They prefer full to partial sun. Though they do best in moist, loamy soil, they have been known to take root in almost any soil condition. From loam to heavy clay, they are prolific colonizers. Each fast-growing plant will spread to a diameter of roughly 3 feet. Given proper care, they will propagate naturally to fill whatever space the gardener desires. A wide range of habitats will allow this plant to thrive, doing well in U.S.D.A. hardiness zones 3-8.   Historically, the crreping buttercup has been used for arthritis, nerve pain, and skin problems Although it is recommended to consult a professional before ingesting any part of the plant. It is always safe, however, to pluck a flower and hold it under your chin, which, according to well-known childhood lore, would indicate a liking for butter.  Perhaps best of all, The Creeping Buttercup Plant has natural pest-repellent properties. Mammalian herbivores avoid them, but critters (such as pets) that make the mistake of consuming the plant will only experience stomach discomfort and no lasting poisonous effects.

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