Gardening with Children

Family Zone

Grow delicious Fruit and Vegetables in Hanging Baskets, Wall Baskets and Window Boxes (Troughs)

Date Posted: 01 May 2012

Have you seen our new Hanging Baskets, Wall Baskets and Window Boxes they are a great way to increase the growing area in your garden and are perfect when space is limited, making them ideal for patios or balconies. Hanging Baskets, Wall Baskets and Window Boxes can accommodate Vegetables and Herbs as easy as colourful flowers and now is the time to start thinking about planting them up. 
Plantopia Hanging & Wall Baskets
Choosing your Basket/Window Box
At the Recycleworks we think that we have found the perfect Hanging and Wall Baskets. The green ‘Plantopia Hanging Basket’ is 15” (40cm) in diameter with 12 planting holes around the side of the baskets plus the top surface and is large enough to accommodate your plants comfortably with plenty of growing room, all the baskets have four strong steel chains which offer better support, balance and reduce twisting. The green Wall Baskets are 20” (50cm) in length with 5 side planting holes plus the top surface. To make planting easier each of the side openings have a ‘gate’ which can be lifted out to allow for easy planting, root first, thus preventing the leaves and stems from being damaged and then they slide back into place to keep the plant secure. Our Window Boxes are available in green or terracotta and either 24” (60cm) or and 31” (80cm) in length.
All three contain a water reservoir at the bottom so reducing the amount of water needed and are made from durable plastic which will last for many years.
 Plantopia Wall Basket
Planting Up
A good quality Multi Purpose or Vegetable Compost should be used with the addition of Rain Gel Water Storage Granules (which absorb water and release it to the plants roots) and a slow release fertiliser such as Chicken Poo. Fill the Hanging/Wall Basket up to the openings with compost and insert your chosen plants root first and then top up with more compost to within a few centimetres of the top of the basket (to allow for watering), planting up with your remaining plants on the top, and then give the basket a thorough watering. If the weather is still cool it is advisable to place them undercover (greenhouse, porch, conservatory, cold frame) until the plants are established. 
Self Watering Troughs
Place your Baskets/ Windows Boxes in a sunny and sheltered position out of prevailing winds to get the best results from your crops.
Suitable Plants
Strawberries are my favourite and perfect as they are out of reach of slugs, small animals and the birds are put off too, the fruit ripens quicker and the Hanging Baskets can be turned round to face the sun to enable all the fruits to ripen, if you choose your varieties carefully you can be picking fruit from June until early Autumn.
Tomatoes are perfect too but make sure that you choose a variety suitable for Hanging Baskets, cherry sized tomatoes will ripen faster. Plant tomatoes deep to encourage extra roots as the plants can become top heavy with fruit.
Peppers both sweet and chilli are very attractive but choose dwarf varieties as the majority of the standard varieties make quite tall plants which become top heavy.
Herbs varieties ideally suited include Basil, Chives, Oregano, Coriander, Marjoram, Thyme, and Parsley and are handy positioned by the back door.
Salads Salad Leaves, Rocket, Spinach and other salad leaf varieties are ideal and if there is room you could squeeze in a few radish or spring onions on the top.
Cranberries can also be grown, if you want to give them a go Cranberry Pilgrim is the variety to try but they will need to be planted in ericaceous compost.
Dwarf Peas and Dwarf Beans can also be grown too and ‘what grows up can grow down’ and are very attractive cascading over the sides.
Herb Variety Pack
Due to their ‘exposed’ position and their size daily watering is crucial, you may need to water twice a day during hot/windy weather, they shouldn’t be allowed to dry out. A liquid feed would be beneficial during the growing season to ensure good cropping. Newly planted baskets may need protection from frost with fleece.
Have a go at planting up your own hanging basket/wall basket/window box, you can plant them up with the same type of plants or have a mixture of your favourite things to eat.
Be different put a vegetable hanging basket or window box by your front door instead of one planted with flowers it can look just as attractive and you can pick your tasty crops as you pass.
Why not plant up one for an original and unique birthday or anniversary gift or just to say thank you.

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