how to get big, full hanging baskets of petunias?


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Hi all,

New here, what a great resource this place is!

I hope this is the right topic for this forum, I'm not sure where else it should fit in, please inform me if not :)

I'm wondering if any of you have planted petunias in hanging baskets and what tips you can offer me on how to make them look great. I'd love to turn out with something like the photo below.

I picked up a couple of 14" coco lined hanging baskets yesterday but apart from that, i'm not really sure where to start. How many should I plant to each basket? I heard once that people sometimes poke holes in the coco liner and actually plant petunias in the sides of the basket. Is that the trick? Or will they cascade down like this after some time if they are just planted "normally"?

Then, what type of petunia will achieve this look - should I pick up any "wave" petunias or cascading petunias like grandiflora or groundcover?

Any advice you can give me is greatly appreciated! Thank you!
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I do several of these hanging pots every year! DIY is so much cheaper. I use both "regular" and wave types, and plant them fairly densely, about 2-3" apart. Feed several times during the season, and pinch off droopy or dead blossoms daily as this will encourage more flowers.
 
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For a 14in I would put at least 3 if you are using the wave Petunias. I tried the coco liner one year and didn't like it. It dried out so quick. I now just put plastic pots in the wire baskets.
So I work a bit of hanging basket, slow release, pelleted fertilizer (Plant Prod) into the top of the soil then plant the Petunias. After a couple weeks I give them a weekly feeding of 20-20-20 water soluble at 1/4 strength. I do the slow release and the weekly feed because I need to push the plants up here in Calgary.
Always keep an eye out for aphids and when the plant looks scraggly give it a good hair cut, they love it. I just grab the stems and snip away, rather harsh but they don't mind.

Here are some of my results.



 
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Oh and about the look, all the different waves have different growth habits. So I sit for days working out what I will put into a baskets. If you look up the different waves they will tell how high, wide and long they will grow. The old original waves do well for just hanging over the edge and cascading down, the easy waves are compact growers but I love them (the blue Petunias in the pictures and on the ladder), Tidal waves are probably what you want to go with, they give you height and width and length, a round look. The Avalanche waves are great ground covers they just take over.
 
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Beth_B and johnny canoe, thanks so much for your replies! Was definitely attracted to the price of doing it DIY this year. Saw some absolutely beautiful baskets at my local nursery last year but I didn't want to pay the price tag for those, lol.

johnny, thanks for the tips on what petunias to look out for. Tidal wave sounds great and I'll be on the hunt for those in the upcoming weeks when it's finally warm enough to plant. I'm in zone 4b too in South Dakota. I think I'll see if I can fit 5 into a 14" basket, looks like they fill in really well. Was at our local nursery yesterday and it looks like that's about how many they had in theirs. Also, your petunias are amazingly beautiful!! Wow!
 
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