9 Best Annuals for Hanging Baskets

Best Annuals for Hanging Baskets

Choosing annual plants for your hanging baskets offers a multitude of benefits that make them a superb choice for gardeners looking to add a splash of color and vibrancy to their outdoor spaces. Annuals are prized for their ability to bloom prolifically throughout their single growing season, ensuring a continuous display of flowers from spring through fall.

Designing for Hanging Baskets

Unlike perennials, which may have a more limited bloom period, annuals like petunias, geraniums, and lobelias can transform any porch, balcony, or patio with their rich, full blossoms and diverse color palette.

Additionally, since they complete their life cycle in one year, it allows gardeners the flexibility to redesign and replant their hanging arrangements each year, keeping the landscape fresh and exciting.

Best Annuals for Hanging Baskets

1. Portulaca (Moss Roses)

annual hanging plants

Portulaca or “purslane” are spreading plants that are best suited for hanging baskets, window boxes, or as the spiller in mixed container plantings. Portulaca Yellow is an easy-to-care-for and drought and salt tolerant plant that making them great for coastal areas.

Portulaca is a sun plant, rose moss or wax pink, are a low maintenance garden flower. These flowers are perfect for containers, hanging baskets, or planted in the garden.

Choose a white container or porous terra cotta pot so as not to detract from the beauty of the blooms. Portulaca prefers dry conditions, though it will flower best with some moisture. Supplemental watering is generally only needed during a prolonged drought and should be done sparingly, as portulacas are shallow-rooted. Overwatering can cause root rot.

2. Dragonwing Begonia

hanging annual flowers

This Begonia is basically maintenance-free and builds spectacular hanging baskets. It makes a simple container turn alive with it’s eye-catching wing-shaped foliage and nice flowers. Perfect for my sustainable approach to gardening.This plant is also a great choice for attracting bees and butterflies to your garden.

Dragon Wing Begonia is noted for its tolerance to hot and humid summers. It is easily grown in average to moderately fertile, moist, well-drained soils in full sun to full shade. It appreciates some afternoon shade.

Dragon Wing is very heat tolerant and requires low water. One of the most popular plants for porch pots and combos, this plant also does great in a hanging basket. With blooms that will flower from spring through frost, it’s no wonder this is a timeless classic.

3. Geraniums

hanging annuals

You can plant all types of geraniums in hanging flower pots. Hanging geraniums are particularly suitable. They have lots of flowers. Hardy geraniums are easy to grow and are another great bee-friendly plant that also attracts butterflies. Geraniums blossom during May and June.

Grow geraniums in moist but well-drained soil in full sun. Most geraniums need protection in winter. Their preferred location is morning sun and some afternoon shade , they can also thrive in full sun as long as you don’t let them fully dry out.

They are ideal for flanking entrance-ways and adding color to border plantings.

4. Calibrachoa ( Millions Bells)

what is mounding annual

Calibrachoas (also known as million bells, trailing petunias or superbells). Calibrachoa is a popular garden annual that blooms continuously from planting until frost and is ideal for containers, hanging baskets, or raised beds. They offer a wide range of flower colors and patterns that look great by themselves, or when combined with other plants.

Calibrachoa need frequent watering, especially since they are often in smaller containers and hanging baskets. Watering daily is a good practice. Make sure to keep the potting mix moist, but do not overwater to prevent root rot.

Make sure the container or basket has functioning drainage holes for excess water. They can be mixed with other annuals or perennials for a colorful and varied display.

5. Sweet Potato Vine

annual hanging baskets

Sweet Potato Vine is a dense herbaceous annual with a trailing habit of growth, eventually spilling over the edges of hanging baskets and containers. Its medium texture blends into the garden.

Taller container (or alternatively, a hanging basket) will provide more space for the vines to trail down the sides. Make sure the container has drainage holes so the soil doesn’t become overly soggy.

Sweet potato vines need ample amounts of heat and direct sunlight. The more they get, the better they do. These plants will grow in light shade, but their colors will be duller. Give them moist, fertile, well-drained soil. This easy-to-grow plant can add dramatic flair when spilling from pots and hanging baskets.

6. Petunia and Supertunia

annuals for hanging baskets

Supertunia petunias are great for hanging baskets because they have mounding and trailing growth habits and function as both fillers and spillers in containers. They are also excellent landscape plants, best suited to be placed near the front of beds.

Petunias and Supertunias have been worked on and modified over the years to be aggressive growers with a flower display that just doesn’t quit.

To keep this look fueled over the summer, you’ll need to give them plenty of sun, water, and regular doses of fertilizer. Petunias are warm-weather annuals and should be planted after the last frost date in your area.

7. Scaevola ( Fairy Fan flower)

pink hanging basket flowers

Scaevola aemula, the fairy fan-flower or common fan-flower, is a heat- and drought-tolerant plant and is an evergreen perennial, although it is often grown as an annual. It has spoon-shaped leaves and fan-shaped bluish flowers.

Scaevola is best grown in full sun to part shade and does well in hot, dry summers. It prefers medium, well-drained soil that is kept evenly moist but not wet. Scaevola is grown for use in hanging baskets, containers, window boxes, and landscape beds.

The flowers attract butterflies, bees, and other pollinating insects.

8. Lantana

yellow hanging basket flowers

Lantana does especially well in containers as long as basic growing conditions are met. trailing or spreading types of lantana are best for hanging baskets.

Lantana blooms best in full sun. Choose a site with at least 6 hours of direct sun per day. Use a high-quality, all-purpose potting mix that drains well. Add sand, vermiculite, or perlite to improve drainage if needed.

Lantana is a great flower to put in hanging baskets because it is a very hearty plant that can survive in most conditions, even very sunny spots, during the heat of summer. It has bright clusters of flowers that make it a favorite for many gardeners.

9. Giant wax begonia (bronze leaf or green leaf)

mounding annual

It bears huge, elaborate flowers with ruffled petals and a picotee edge, in colors ranging from pink, apricot, and yellow. They are perennial in a warmer climate; most gardeners treat them as annual flowers. They make very impressive plants.

Begonias need to be watered consistently. Check your begonias often during hot, dry weather. If the plants start dropping flowers or wilting, it means the soil is either too wet or too dry. In summer, too much sun can cause the leaves to burn and the plants to suffer. They grow best with cooler air temperatures.

Bronze leaf begonias are considered more sun-tolerant, but they will not even be like a sunny day. Green leaf begonias are tolerant of a range of light conditions, from full sun to shade. In colder climates, plants can tolerate more light. Begonias are grown for their foliage and or attractive flowers.


Opting for annual hanging baskets is a delightful way to inject vibrant color and life into any outdoor space throughout the seasons. These baskets are not only versatile and visually appealing but also offer the opportunity for gardeners to experiment with different plant combinations each year.

By choosing annuals, you can tailor your displays to your personal taste and the specific conditions of your environment, ensuring that your living decorations are always at their best. Furthermore, annual hanging baskets can be updated or changed with minimal cost and effort, making them an ideal choice for those looking to enjoy seasonal beauty without a long-term commitment.

Whether enhancing a porch, patio, or balcony, annual hanging baskets provide an instant and refreshing touch of nature that is sure to enhance any living space.

Johan Perez
Johan Perez is an experienced agriculturalist with over twenty years in the field. He holds a Ph.D. in Agricultural Sciences and has contributed extensively to research on sustainable farming practices. Johan has also written for numerous agricultural periodicals, offering expert advice on farming technologies and methods. In his free time, he enjoys outdoor adventures, which often inform his professional insights into ecological agriculture.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign Up For Newsletter!