petunias in hanging containers

njitgradApril 10, 2014

I have a bunch of petunia seedlings that need to be transplanted into hanging containers very soon. Having never really worked with annual seedlings I could use a little advice. Here are my questions.

1) I have a bunch of 14" diameter hanging pots (cheapy $12.00 re-usable ones from my local garden center). How many holes should I drill for adequate drainage and how large should the holes be?

2) Should I line the bottom of the container with gravel or should I just use mesh fiberglass tape to cover the holes?

3) How many petunia transplants into a container of that size? I was thinking three, in a triangular shape layout.

4) I will be re-using potting soil from last year that I stored in a well ventilated clean trash can. I plan to add Osmocote Plus CRF to it so that I don't need to feed them again after I transplant them. Does that sound about right?

5) I also have Duet Sorbet violas and White Verbanas...will these go well with Petunias in a hanging container?

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david52 Zone 6

I do a couple of dozen hanging baskets of petunias every year, hanging them all around the verandas.

1) I have a bunch of 14" diameter hanging pots (cheapy $12.00 re-usable ones from my local garden center). How many holes should I drill for adequate drainage and how large should the holes be? 4 or 5 x 3/8 inch dia holes should do it.

2) Should I line the bottom of the container with gravel or should I just use mesh fiberglass tape to cover the holes? Use the mesh. Make sure the water runs out and the mesh isn't blocked.

3) How many petunia transplants into a container of that size? I was thinking three, in a triangular shape layout. three is good

4) I will be re-using potting soil from last year that I stored in a well ventilated clean trash can. I plan to add Osmocote Plus CRF to it so that I don't need to feed them again after I transplant them. Does that sound about right? They're pretty heavy feeders. If the growth slows down, a shot of Miracle grow does wonders.

5) I also have Duet Sorbet violas and White Verbanasâ¦will these go well with Petunias in a hanging container? I'd think the verbena would do well.

One trick is to start pruning them back after a month or so - prune back 6 inches from the one or two longest stems in each pot every week or so, and the whole container will look spectacular all summer. They also need very frequent watering, here its every two or three days.

Edited to add that I keep four or five going all winter in a south-facing window, and I like to put some seedling trays underneath which collect the tiny seeds as they fall. I start watering those in early march, and have a crop of new petunias all ready for the summer. Or, you can very easily root cuttings from the existing plants should you get some cool hybrid - I had one going for years, an inadvertent cross that popped up from the dropped seeds.

This post was edited by david52 on Thu, Apr 10, 14 at 22:29

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 10:25PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

Totally agree, though don't I don't usually find it's necessary to use anything to cover drain holes. Very little soil comes out of them unless they are really big. I worry more about critters coming in the holes than soil going out, for pots that don't hang. Hanging pots don't have this concern.

Hanging pots usually already have holes. Heck, at $12, I'd expect it to have a mature plant in it. Anyway, there may be a drain saucer that can just snap off (and the protuberances holding it on the pot may be what's blocking the holes.) I always take these off.

Hanging baskets rule! Last year I ended up with almost 50, though none had Petunias. I'd love to see pics of your (and David's) baskets when ready for the public!

    Bookmark   April 12, 2014 at 10:39AM
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njitgrad

Great, thanks for the advice.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 9:11AM
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