Updated: May 9
Hanging baskets are the perfect way to make the most of your space and add dimension and height to your yard, porch or balcony. Here are 7 of our favorite full sun annuals to use in hanging baskets.
The number of Begonia varieties out there is truly astounding. One of our favorite full-sun varieties (that can also grow in part shade) is Dragonwing Begonia. One of the most popular plants for porch pots and combos, this plant also does great in a hanging basket. Available at Painters with red or pink blooms that will flower from spring through frost, it’s no wonder this is a timeless classic.
Dragonwing Begonias are heat tolerant, can handle a few skipped days of watering, have a nice branching habit, and require no pruning or dead heading.
SCAEVOLA (FAN FLOWER)
The beautiful trailing habit and abundant fan-shaped flowers of this unique plant are sure to intrigue you and your guests all summer long. Sometimes know as the 'Fairy Fan Flower' this annual will live up to its name as it spills over the side of your hanging basket. In a hot and humid climate this annual will offer blooms from early spring til first frost. Its thick stems provide an extra layer of drought tolerance making it a perfect choice for hanging baskets, which tend to dry out quicker than pots. It does not need to be pinched back, requires little in the way of fertilizing, and can bounce back from a few skipped days of watering.
BLACK EYED SUSAN VINE (THUNBERGIA)
This climbing annual with daisy-like flowers makes a big impact. Typically seen in hanging baskets or trellised from a pot, it constantly seeks something to climb. The lush foliage and bright flowers will quickly turn any hanging basket into a floating plant as the container disappears! Fast growing, this plant likes well draining soil and to be watered when the top inch is dry.
Petunias are a timeless garden favorite, offering big impact with bright blooms in a limitless array of colors from early spring to first frost. These plants are easy to care for but do not like to dry out and may require twice daily watering on hotter days. While Petunias can tolerate part sun they give off their best show in full sun. There are multiple varieties to choose from we recommend a trailing variety for hanging baskets. The only question is which color will you pick? All of our varieties are self-cleaning, so no need to deadhead.
CALIBRACHOA (MILLION BELLS)
Also known as Million Bells, Calibrachoa is a full sun annual with a gorgeous mounding and trailing growth habit available in a multitude of colors. With blooms similar to that of its cousin, the Petunia, but miniature, what its flowers lack in size they make up for in abundance. These bright blooms also attract hummingbirds and butterflies to your front porch or garden. Like the petunia, million bells enjoy full sun to part sun, but you’ll get the most blooms in 6+ hours of full sun. Calibrachoa's flowers will go strong through the heat of summer and it does not require deadheading to stay in bloom. Keep their soil evenly moist but be wary of overwatering!
Occasional feed helps too!
PORTULACA (MOSS ROSE)
This annual flowering succulent offers some of the brightest blooms in an array of pinks, oranges, yellows, and purples, and is a great choice for someone who prefers low maintenance plants. Its flowers open and close with the sun, so be sure to keep this plant in a full sun spot to enjoy the bright pops of color that emerge anew every morning. Because it is a succulent, this plant can tolerate high heat, drought conditions, and requires less frequent watering than other annuals on this list. This low maintenance plant only requires water when the top 1/2-1" is completely dry.
Unlike regular impatiens, these hybrid impatiens can tolerate part to full sun and high heat. Sunpatiens are perfect for someone who likes a tidier look as they do not trail but have a nice upright, mounded habit and will fill out a basket beautifully from spring through autumn. You can also consider pairing them with trailing plants like Dichondra Silver Falls, Creeping Jenny, or Sweet Potato Vine if you do want to add some trailing action to your basket. These easy to grow plants are low maintenance and require moderate watering (every 2 or so days in morning sun/part sun, but daily in full sun).