View Full Version : Winter baskets????

24th September 2008, 21:01
Now my summer hanging baskets are almost done with can anyone tell me what to fill them with so they are nice and colourful through the next few months, i have never done any late summer/winter type baskets before...i know the obvious winter pansies, apart from that i havnt a clue.

24th September 2008, 21:07
lol was about to say winter pansies - my mum had something lovely that wasnt flowers but colourful - was red and bright and nice

24th September 2008, 21:10
You could put a heather in the centre and some ivy around the edge as well as pansies.
Small pots of ivy are often made up from several cuttings so if you look for a nice bushy one and count the stems you might be able to get away with dividing one in three.

Small conifers or small shrubs like low growing hebes are also ok to give a bit of height to the centre. Pop a few small bulbs in the top such as crocus and miniature daffs then you will have some new colour in the spring.

Be careful of your choice of compost for heathers and conifers because they are lime haters so you'd need an ericaceous compost.

Have a look at some ready made up baskets in garden centres to get some ideas.

24th September 2008, 21:43
...I put violas, pansies, primroses, ivy in my baskets....great sunshine on a winters day!

24th September 2008, 22:15
Thankyou guys, i will rep you all, and start planning my baskets:D
Sorry Giz, wont let me rep you, gotta spread the luurrrvv

25th September 2008, 11:52
I've just copied this from the RHS website

Winter hanging baskets shouldn't be seen as the poor relation to summer displays. Winter displays can be equally alluring although often subtler.

Winter baskets are relatively low maintenance. The occasional water unless unseasonably dry. In the depths of winter when frost and snow is about stop watering completely as it will freeze the roots. With the onset of a thaw give the plants a good drink. Cold winds can also quickly dry out baskets.

Before planting think about the type of compost to use i.e. if planting heathers use ericaceous compost. Any compost used should be free draining. When planting remember plants grow more slowly in winter so plant closer together or buy larger ones.

Popular plants used for winter baskets are pansies, heathers, primroses and Hedera. Dwarf conifers, dwarf hebes, Skimmia or Euonymus - particularly variegated forms - can make good central features. Polyanthus give good height and flower over a long period. Crocus, Iris, miniature daffodils and tulips add spring colour.

Winter baskets - especially those containing winter-flowering plants - should be planted as early as possible as plants will not grow much in the winter and so won't initiate flower buds. Try and have them planted by mid-September if possible.

Skimmia which is mentioned above is a good one. Choose Skimmia Rubella which has red flower buds all winter and then opens to delicate pink or white flowers in the spring. Many of the plants can be transplanted into your garden when you redo the baskets with summer plants which makes it quite economical.

Check your baskets after a frost. The plants may look wilted and you will think it's the cold but they might be in need of a drink. The frost draws all the moisture out of the basket.

25th September 2008, 12:01
I always stick a few small bulbs in mine - crocus, miniature daffodils. I like to put in something like a variegated thyme (provided it within easy reach of the back door and sheltered) to use in cooking. I bought some cyclamen from Aldi and thought I might use one or two of those too.

25th September 2008, 12:07
The small cyclamens are lovely. Have a sniff before you buy because some of them are fragrant.

25th September 2008, 13:04
Oh I love that idea of mixing small bulbs in...why didnt I think of that before!


2nd October 2008, 08:01
Last year I did some violas which are real troopers and keep going even when you transfer them from baskets to beds.

My favourites were the ornamental cabbages (courtesy of Tesco) which were really unusual but colourful to look at. Had these in pots by our front door. Thought we were getting slug attacks as they kept disappearing however found the source of our problem to be my dog who was craftily eating them! (although she behaves like she's starving I do feed her honest, she's just a dustbin!)