20 Gorgeous Fall Hanging Basket Ideas

Stage your own fall color show with spectacular hanging baskets overflowing with plants that thrive in the season’s cooler weather.

August 26, 2020

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Photo By: Sakata Seed Company

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Photo By: Shutterstock/A. L. Spangler

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Photo By: ProvenWinners.com

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Photo By: ProvenWinners.com

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Photo By: ProvenWinners.com

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Photo By: Fred Zwiebel for LongwoodGardens.org

Photo By: ProvenWinners.com

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Photo By: ProvenWinners.com

Photo By: Ball Horticultural Company

Welcome Fall With Pansies

Ignite your autumn scenery with sizzling shades of red and gold by hanging baskets of Cool Wave Fire pansies. This newcomer to the Cool Wave pansy line-up celebrates the season with classic fall hues. Cool Wave pansies naturally cascade and trail over basket edges, creating a lush, bloom-a-licious look. Expect these pansies to survive fall frosts with ease, gracing your home with living color until you’re ready for some ho-ho-holiday plantings. In warmer zones, shift these trailing pansies from baskets to garden beds, and you'll have flowers all winter long.

Learn More: Growing Tips and Planting Ideas for Fall Pansies

Pretty in Pink

Count on snapdragon to keep the flowers coming. These cool-season bloomers grow best in sweater weather: nights in the 40s and days below 70°F. Candy Showers Rose snapdragon is a naturally cascading type — an ideal candidate for hanging baskets where its flower-covered stems can trail and tumble freely. Expect snapdragon baskets to survive winter in Zones 8 and warmer (they may or may not keep blooming through a Zone 7 winter, depending on how low temps go).

Learn More: How to Grow and Care for Snapdragon Flowers

Cool Season Cyclamen

Give your autumn hanging baskets staying power with the one-two punch of flowering cyclamen and needle grass. This plant partnership weaves a textural tapestry that’s as brilliant as it is beautiful. Why? Because both plants hold their own through early fall frosts to keep the show going strong. Cyclamen thrives to 23°F while needle grass keeps its good looks right up to the first snow. This needle grass variety is Stipa lessingiana 'Capriccio' — a smaller version adapted for containers.

Learn More: All About Cyclamen

Try a Fall Classic

For show-stopping color, nothing beats hanging baskets overflowing with garden mums. These autumn icons stage a flower show that will make you smile all the way to Thanksgiving in warmer regions. Flowers brown with hard frosts, so in northerly zones, it’s best to get your chrysanthemum baskets up as soon as you see them for sale. Choose a flower color that complements your home’s exterior for an eye-pleasing scene.

Learn More: Mums 101: When To Plant and How To Grow Chrysanthemums

Impatiens for Warm Regions

If you exercise your green thumb in the South, consider impatiens for fall color — but not just any impatiens. You need to find Beacon impatiens, which are a disease-resistant type that doesn’t melt away in autumn’s rainy, cooler weather. Beacons unfurl flowers in all your favorite impatiens shades, including red, orange, violet, rose (shown) and white. Like other impatiens, this bloomer grows best in part sun to full shade. These plants were bred to be resistant to impatiens' downy mildew. The company behind Beacon donates 3 percent of sales to a lesser-known charitable organization each year. In 2020, that donation went to the Osteogenesis Imperfecta Foundation (OI).

Learn More: Impatiens Flowers: Impatiens Walleriana

Fragrant and Fabulous

Sweet alyssum is a cool-season favorite for flowers and fragrance. This pair of baskets contains a newer type, Clear Crystal, which has larger plants, bigger blossoms and outstanding fragrance. Plants tolerate heat well, flowering in Dallas well into June’s heat, and also shrug off early frosts, surviving when temps tumble into the mid-20s. For a strong fall display, look for Clear Crystal on the plant tag in your hanging baskets to be certain you’re getting the right sweet alyssum. Hang these perfumed bloomers near a door or patio where you’ll be able to savor the scent.

Supertunia Showcase

Sweet alyssum also shines when it’s paired with the flower powerhouse known as Supertunia — a type of petunia that trails up to 30 inches and never needs deadheading. Like petunias, Supertunias are surprisingly cold tolerant, withstanding freezing temps — and even hard frosts (temps below 28°F) — for a few hours with little to no damage. This hanging basket fills fall evenings with a sweet perfume. Fertilizing plants with water-soluble plant food helps fuel the non-stop flowers.

Learn More: Growing Petunias

Discover Trailing Garden Mums

Look for new Skyfall mums to create the perfect porch-size garden mum orb. Traditional garden mums don’t always make the prettiest hanging baskets because their stems don’t naturally trail and can be brittle. Not so with Skyfall mums. These trailing mums adapt beautifully to hanging baskets, cascading naturally. The petite daisy blooms beckon butterflies to the frost-tolerant plants. Look for flower colors of yellow, white, pink, purple and red. Plants are garden hardy in Zones 6A to 11. Plant at least six weeks before frost to help ensure winter survival.

Dynamic Duo

Look for hanging baskets filled with a pair of fall’s finest bloomers: viola and sweet alyssum. This duet delivers strong color through the season’s first frost and beyond. These pretty-in-purple posies are Sorbet Midnight Glow viola and Clear Crystal Purple Shades sweet alyssum. In northern regions, this combination should keep flowering until hard frosts last all night long. Southern gardeners can expect these baskets to look great for Thanksgiving company — and even longer. Tuck plants into beds to enjoy blooms into winter.

Learn More: Winter Annuals

Autumn Brilliance

Set off some floral fireworks in traditional fall hues with a stunning Supertunia and Superbells basket. To create this vibrant combination, Supertunia Black Cherry teams with a pair of Superbells calibrachoa: orange Dreamsicle and Yellow. All of these plants flower right up to frost without missing a blooming beat. This basket grows best in part to full sun. Feed plants regularly, even every time you water, using water-soluble fertilizer. When trimming, cut stems back by one-third for best results.

Cold Weather Champ

This cold-tolerant basket features a trio of silvery-white plants that transition beautifully from fall to the holiday season. Grassy Amazon Mist leatherleaf sedge (Carex comans) keeps its looks all the way down to 0°F (hardy to Zone 6), while flowering Metis Pure White cyclamen survives to 23°F (Zone 9). The lush tangles of Silver Falls Dichondra argentea are hardy to Zone 8. Choose this basket if you live where fall lingers long and serious cold doesn’t show up until the New Year. In northern regions, you’ll enjoy the show until mid- to late October unless hard frosts come sooner and stick around.

Cool Toned Beauties

What’s better for fall color than a pansy? How about a trailing pansy that naturally rambles and scampers over the edges of hanging baskets? Cool Wave pansy does just that, opening classic pansy blooms in a rainbow of shades. Look for hanging baskets planted with Cool Wave spreading pansies, or whip up your own. Choose baskets in single colors to complement your home’s exterior, or get in on nature’s autumn act by hanging baskets overflowing with pansies that contrast with the fall color of nearby trees.

Blazing Fall Color

Some classic summer annuals can hold their own well into fall, even standing up to early light frosts. Orange tones steal the spotlight in this autumn-themed hanging basket that features grass-like Toffee Twist carex, Flirtation Orange diascia, Diamond Frost euphorbia and Superbena Royale Peachy Keen verbena. These annuals withstand varying degrees of frost. In mild winter regions, they’ll deliver color through early December.

Learn More: 15 Summer Annual Tips

Herbal Beauty

'Kirigami' ornamental oregano isn’t meant for the kitchen — it’s purely a garden delight with its colorful bracts and lightly fragrant flowers. During autumn’s cool nights, the rose-purple bracts on 'Kirigami' (Origanum x hybrid 'Kirigami') deepen in color. Look for this beauty in spring to grow all summer long and into fall. Or pick it up at garden centers in autumn to decorate outdoor spaces until hard frost arrives. This oregano is winter hardy in planting beds in Zones 5b-8b. Tuck it into the garden at least six weeks before hard frost to help ensure winter survival. Next spring, dig it and pot it, or enjoy its trailing stems in the garden.

Larger-Than-Life Hanging Basket

Fall means garden mums, and no one does mum hanging baskets better than Longwood Gardens. At their annual Chrysanthemum Festival, mums take center stage, including these gigantic hanging orbs. Your porch might not be able to accommodate an oversize orb, but it can host pretty garden mum hanging baskets.

See More Photos: Mum-Extravaganza! A Glorious Annual Chrysanthemum Festival

Shades of Pink

Fall’s blazing hues of orange, gold and red blend artfully with pretty pink tones, like those found in this basket of blushing annuals. The trio features frost-hardy Rose Veined Trailing Supertunia (small pink petunia), Blushing Princess sweet alyssum and Royal Magenta Supertunia (large deep pink petunia). Supertunias withstand light freezes to 30°F, while dainty sweet alyssum bounces back from hard freezes of short duration. In other words, this mix of bloomers can bring on color from early fall to whenever consistent cold arrives in your neck of the woods.

Bold Begonias

New to the begonia market, Megawatt begonia delivers big color on big plants (20 to 28 inches tall). It’s a natural for hanging baskets, forming lush, flower-covered balls that look good from spring to fall. This beauty waltzes from summer heat and drought to autumn chill without missing a blooming beat. Look for Megawatt begonias with bronze-tinted leaves for a striking complement to fall’s natural color palette. Flowers colors include pink (shown), rose and red.

Learn More: Begonias: How to Plant, Grow and Care for Begonias

Garden Mums For Baskets

These aren’t your grandmother’s garden mums! Dress your outdoor spaces with the newest in garden mums: trailing Skyfall garden mums (Chrysanthemum morifolium). The flowers open to reveal petite daisy-like blossoms that beckon late-season pollinators. Create your own autumn fest by hanging baskets of mixed Skyfall garden mum varieties, including yellow, white and pink. Purchase baskets that are fully budded and just starting to open flowers to make sure you get the color you want. Then sit back and enjoy the floral fireworks as buds burst.

Petunia Perfection

Don’t hesitate to bring home a fall petunia basket from your favorite garden or home center. If it’s planted with Proven Winners Supertunias and Calibrachoa, you’ll be in for weeks of flowery color. This blend of petunia-like blooms features a mix of Really Red Supertunia and Royal Velvet Supertunia (purple), accented with the smaller blossoms of Dreamsicle Orange calibrachoa. These petunias don’t need deadheading to look their best and deliver color through Thanksgiving in all but the coldest regions.

Mix It Up

If you’re a gardener who craves pure splashes of single colors, try something different this year. Mimic Mother Nature’s fall color show and treat yourself to a hanging basket planted with a mix of hues. The effect is truly a garden party in a pot. Cool Wave Mix Spreading Pansy delivers a just-right blend (designed by the seed breeders) that’s eye-catching and perfect for fall. Tuck a pot into the ground at least six weeks before frost, add extra mulch once the ground freezes, and you’ll be rewarded with early spring pansies. Cool Wave pansies handle temperatures as low as minus 13° Fahrenheit. They’ll look frozen solid during winter, and leaves and stems may turn brown, but watch what happens when spring peeks around the corner. Of course, plants in pots won’t survive freezing temperatures.

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