Ideal if you have limited windowsill space, colorful baskets create an attractive "living" feature for your home.
Use a piece of thick plastic to line the inside of the basket. Trim the edges to ensure that the base and sides are fully covered, but the liner isn't visible over the edge.
Drill lots of small drainage holes in the base of a low, wide plastic bowl. This will act as your pot, while the liner acts as a saucer to catch excess water.
Cover the small drainage holes with a layer of small gravel to keep them from blocking up. Then add potting mix with slow-release fertilizer, leaving space for the plants.
Remove the plants from their pots and arrange them in the basket. Plants such as begonias and spider plants make good focal points, and they are best planted toward the center of the basket.
Use small amounts of potting mix to fill in around the plants. Firm it down with your fingers and add more until the soil surface is level, leaving a 1" gap below the rim. Hang it in a bright spot out of direct sunlight.
Water the hanging basket, making sure the whole surface of the potting mix is wetted. The liner will act as a saucer and catch excess moisture. After an hour, take down the basket and tip out any excess so that the potting mix doesn't become waterlogged, which could harm your plants. Add water every two weeks in spring and summer; reduce watering in winter. Plants will need re-potting every few years.
Excerpted from How to Grow Practically Everything
© 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited