Hanging baskets have gained popularity over the years here in the US and now they have become home gardeners’ go-to option. These not only add to the décor but also bring in a sense of accomplishment. We are sure you love your hanging plants but what if they refuse to grow?
Why are my hanging baskets not growing? The most common cause for hanging baskets not growing is the size of the container they are in. If the container is too small the roots of the plant are cramped up resulting in stunted growth. The solution to this is repotting the plant and letting it take its time to grow naturally. It is also advisable to water the plant regularly and feed it well.
Why are my hanging baskets not growing?
If you notice that your hanging baskets are not growing here are some of the possible reasons.
1. Hanging baskets not growing due to improper sunlight
When it comes to hanging baskets the location it is placed in makes all the difference. The variety of plants may differ but most of them have similar requirements.
Most plants used in hanging baskets require half a day of sunlight some also require an entire days’ worth of sunlight. If the plant does not receive enough sunlight, it will have stunted growth.
In some cases, it may so happen that the plant variant in the basket is a shade-loving plant. In such cases, if the plant is left in a sunny spot, it will not grow. Hence it becomes necessary to understand the plant and care for it accordingly.
How to fix hanging baskets not growing due to improper sunlight
In order to fix a hanging basket that is not growing due to either insufficient or excess light, it is important to understand the plant and its requirements. For this read about the plant, you are planning to care for.
Some plants need a lot of sunlight and you will need to place them in a sunny spot. For plants that require less sunlight, they can be placed in a spot with a little shade.
Simply understanding the plant and caring for it accordingly will save a lot of trouble when it comes to placement.
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2. Hanging baskets not growing due to insufficient watering
Contrary to popular belief hanging plants require sufficient water not only while it blooms but also while the plant is growing.
Hence, to see that the plant grows well it is important to water them regularly and most importantly sufficiently. Insufficient or irregular water can cause the hanging plant to wilt or have stunted growth.
Hanging plants tend to dry out sooner as compared to other plants. This makes it imperative to water them every day. On hotter days the plant needs to be watered more often.
How to fix hanging baskets not growing due to insufficient watering
If insufficient watering is causing stunted growth in hanging baskets the only option is to fix it by setting a watering schedule.
As these plants tend to dry quickly watering them in the morning is a good option. On hotter days it is better to water them twice and in some cases mist them.
To water hanging baskets water it in such a way that the water flows all the way through the basket. You will need to let the water overflow. This way the plant can absorb the water required and the excess can flow out.
On hotter days you can either repeat the process in the evening or put in half the amount later in the evening or night.
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3. Hanging baskets not growing because they are hungry
Feeding hanging baskets is extremely important. Even though these pants are low in maintenance it is important to feed them well. This ensures that the plant grows and blooms well.
These plants unlike plants in the garden are stuck in the soil and pots they are planted in. this means that they are completely dependant on you for nourishment. Lack of which will cause them to have stunted growth.
How to fix hanging baskets not growing because they are hungry
When it comes to caring for hanging baskets it is better to feed them regularly as compared to feeding them once in a blue moon. You can sprinkle in slow-release fertilizers and let them work wonders as you water the plant.
Alternatively, you can mix miracle grow or other liquid fertilizer with the water you use to water the plant. This is a more instant and direct manner of feeding the plant. This way the plant will respond instantly.
Worm castings are an excellent choice when it comes to feeding hanging plants. You need to mix it into the top layer of the soil. It acts as a slow-releasing fertilizer and does the job pretty well. Not only does it offer the plant the required nutrients but also helps retain moisture.
For organic liquid fertilizer options, you can go in for worm casting tea, compost tea, or an organic store-bought liquid fertilizer.
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4. Hanging baskets not growing because the pot is too small
Hanging baskets suffer tremendously from the lack of space. These plants require a lot of
room to grow, the roots are dense and, in most cases, run out of space in summer. When the planter is too small the roots cannot breathe, this causes them to suffocate. This causes the plant to stop growing and eventually wilt.
How to fix hanging baskets not growing because the pot is too small
There are two ways to fix a plant that is not growing because the pot is too small. Either you repot the plant or you can divide the plant into smaller plants and grow them in different planters.
Both options require removing the plant from the soil and loosening the roots. this gives the plant space to breathe and it can resume normal functioning.
It is better to use a 14” or a 16” if you want it to last the entire growing period. Anything less than that will be outgrown in a month or two.
While repotting the plant be sure to use good quality potting mix and also add in fertilizers. This will take the strain off the roots and help the plant absorb nutrients and moisture that it missed.
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5. Hanging baskets not growing because of dead and dying blooms
Dead leaves and spent blooms tend to rot on the plant and restrict growth. These keep the plant from attaining its full potential.
If left on the plant the old booms not only become an eyesore but also use up the valuable resources of the plant that could otherwise be used by new blooms and leaves.
How to fix hanging baskets not growing because of dead and dying blooms
To fix this issue it is better to deadhead and cut back the plant often. this way the plant will have time to recover and most importantly it will better the growth. Having a pruning schedule that you can follow will reduce stress. It can be done every other week or as and when you see spent blooms.
The choice is entirely yours.
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Hanging baskets are an excellent way of lifting up the mood of your home garden. If you are faced with the question Why are my hanging baskets not growing? Remember there can be various reasons. it can surely be because the plant has outgrown the planter, or that you are not watering it enough.
In some cases, it can be that you are not feeding the plant enough, or the dead leaves and spent blooms are taking up all the nutrients. Either way, the key to a perfect hanging basket is patience and knowledge about the plant. This will save you from the effort and stress.
I’m Elsa, and I love gardening. I started GardeningElsa.com as a resource for other gardeners, and I offer expert advice on gardening topics such as plants, flowers, herbs, and vegetable gardening. On my website, I share my latest tips and tricks for creating beautiful gardens. When I’m not working on my website, you can find me in my own garden, tending to my plants and flowers. Read more about me.