Foliage in Hanging Baskets - its not always about the
For something different think foliage in hanging baskets - there are
so many different plants available that you can plant singularly or that
you mix and match to create wonderful hanging baskets combinations.
From potato vines, to coleus, to ferns, caladiums, succulents - the
choice for your hanging baskets is vast.
In this article below some good plants are recommended - I have noted
next to these one we think excel in hanging baskets.
Foliage first: These plants concentrate their drama in leaves of
eye-stopping color, shape and size
Caladiums are a striking substitute for flowers, with their heart-shaped
leaves and splashes of pink, white and red. They're not a winter plant,
however, and die back, to rise again in the spring. - GREAT IN HANGING
Holy cow, I must be an old gardener. I am not just looking for plants
with beautiful flowers; I am actually going beyond that and admiring
For years the battle has been raging between the flowers and the foliage
plants in my garden. Well, Iíve decided to declare a winner. They both
are. Itís like giving me a choice between a cold beer and a cold beer ó
of course they both win!
A lot of the plants that grow here in Southwest Florida are considered
tropical or sub tropical and a lot of them produce the most beautiful
foliage you have ever seen, leaving their flowers as a secondary
thought, making the foliage of the plant the big show.
Alocasias ó often called elephant ear plants ó are beautiful tropical
plants that live up to their tropical billing. Their foliage comes in
various shades of green, white, black, with variegations and
combinations of all of the aforementioned. Florida gardens produce a
real tropical look and feeling when Alocasias are inserted in the
landscape. Some of the leaves can be 6 to 10 inches in length, while
others other can be 2 to 3 feet long, making them dramatic not only by
color but by size.
Copperleaf. One of my favorite groups of plants is the Acalyphas, or
commonly known as Copperleaf. They come in so many leaf shapes, from
long and skinny to fat and colorful, and from heart to fringe shapes. To
have a collection of Acalyphas in oneís garden is a plus because of
their extremely colorful foliage and leaf designs. The flowers are
miniscule, but I have seen butterflies nectar on them many times in my
I have done many site consultations at private homes and condo complexes
where I have been asked to suggest color for the gardens, landscapes and
entrance ways that do not have to be changed out with the changing
seasons. Copperleaf fits the bill, and with just a little hand trimming
it will give you spectacular color all year long. It is hard to think of
a more colorful shrub.
The leaves can contain three or four different colors from pinks to
greens to reds and whites and on and on and on. They are the color wheel
of plants. A lot of gardeners have trouble, usually once a year, when
the sun shifts, thrusting shade plants into sun and sun plants into
shade. Copperleaf will self-adjust to the changing light by simply
changing the color variations on its leaves slightly.
Note: Acalypha pendula or Chenille Plant is great for hanging baskets.
This Compact, weeping plant has stunning flowers and makes an ideal
hanging basket plant. Exotic, brilliant red, pendulous cattail flowers
bloom almost year round. Give partial shade and moderate water - they
thrive in warm semi shade/ morning sun positions and do not tolerate
cold. They can be overwintered by moving them into a conservatory.
Philodendrons are a class in themselves: hundreds to choose from, with
one plantís foliage outdoing the next. The new hybrids have brought
striking pinks and whites to leaves that in the past were mainly green.
They all have a super tropical look to them. A warning: Just keep them
in check. They will wander.
Arabian lilac. Another of my favorites groups of plants for foliage is
the Vitex category. One is Vitex trifolia, or Arabian lilac, which is
sold for its blue upper leaf color and the mauve underside color, making
it a striking statement of color in any garden, especially when the wind
blows unveiling the mauve underside color of the leaf. The bonus with
this plant is the sky blue flowers it produces in the summer.
Persian shield (Strobilanthes dyerianus) is almost unmatched for color
in shady areas. The leaves vary from silver to green to purple and white
and any combination of the colors. Itís a real show-stopper. - GREAT IN
Caladiums (Caladiums spp.) are always must for summer color. They come
in almost every color known to man. The leaves are not only colorful
they also have a beautiful heart shape. They do well in pots, hanging
baskets as a ground cover or as a garden border. They require average
amounts of water. - GREAT IN HANGING BASKETS
Tractor seat and kin. Here are three different varieties of Farfugium
japonicum: tractor seat, leopard leaf and ruffle leaf. The tractor seat
is just that: a plant with a large leaf that looks just like an old-time
tractor seat and is just as big and very dramatic. The leopard leaf is a
little smaller leaf with white to yellow spots all over it. People often
ask if bleach was spilled on it.
The ruffle leaf is frilly and looks like the outer leaves of cabbage.
All bloom in yellow daisylike flowers which are extended on tall stalks
that protrude up and outward from the main plant. All prefer a shady
area and all are sure to be a topic of conversation in the garden.
So when trying to decide what your garden should look like give everyone
a chance, flowers and foliage. Keep butterflying!