5 Winter Hanging Basket Ideas - Backyard Boss
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5 Winter Hanging Basket Ideas

A hanging basket is an excellent way to exhibit the most vibrant flowers and plants. While many associate hanging baskets with summertime, you can easily curate eye-catching displays of colorful blooms and lush foliage in the winter.

These baskets can bring cheerfulness and a festive vibe to your gardens when all the other plants and flowers have gone dormant. Learn the top winter hanging basket ideas.

1) Plant Pansies

Newly planted pansy flowers in a hanging basket, catching the rich golden hour sunshine. There is an attractive lens flare.
Image credits: Christine Bird via Shutterstock

Pansies can bloom intermittently during mild winter spells, giving you a riot of colors. These flowers are generally easy to take care of and hang beautifully from raised planters. 

These tiny, cheerful flowers are hardy plants and can survive in zones 3 to 8 but prefer temperatures between 45 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit.

Place the hanging baskets with flowers in areas that receive full or partial sunlight to allow them to make the most of the rare winter sun. Occasionally some of the blooms can get damaged by frost. In that case, simply snip off the flower.

To ensure you enjoy the brilliant display, plant the flowers in well-draining soil with organic matter to improve drainage. Water the plant after a dry spell whenever there is less than 1 inch of rainfall.

Water the pansies in the morning to allow the water to dry off from leaves before nighttime.  

2) Create a Colorful Display

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You can mix and match flowers of different colors to add a splash of pizazz to the bleak winter backdrop. If you are not confident about combining other flowering species, go for different colors of the same flowering plant.

Crocus is a perennial flowering plant with blooms that resemble tiny tulips. It can survive the harshest winter and is available in various hues, such as purple, pink, red, yellow, orange, and blue. They are extremely cold hardy. For example, the snow crocus (Crocus tommasinianus) doesn’t even germinate until temperatures reach 41 degrees Fahrenheit. 

These flowers are also relatively small, just 2 to 4 inches tall, making them perfect for a hanging basket. 

The plant thrives in partial to full sun locations and can survive in zones between 3 and 8. It prefers well-draining soil with a neutral pH. 

Take care of its watering schedule during the growing season (late winter and early spring). Crocuses should get 1/2 to 1 inch of water weekly. In the absence of snow cover, you need to water it throughout winter. 

3) Focus on Foliage

Garden composition of ornamental flowers in a basket, sprayer and shovel on the table
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Besides flowers, you can also add some refreshing greenery to your garden by placing foliage of different colors and textures in your hanging container.


Heucheras, or coral bells, are an excellent choice as they can grow in zones 4 to 9, surviving temperatures as low as -30 degrees Fahrenheit. They have evergreen, variegated leaves in deep purple, maroon, orange, and lime green colors. The plant can also bloom tiny flowers on wire stems that spike upwards.

The pale-shaded varieties thrive in partial shade, while the darker leaves can tolerate more sun. When watering the plant, apply water directly to the soil and avoid wetting the leaves as it can be fungus and rot.     

Keep your planters out of heavy rain or snow in winter, as the compost can get waterlogged.     


Skimmias are handsome evergreen shrubs that are exceptionally easy to maintain and work perfectly in hanging baskets in winter. They can grow in hardiness zones 6 and 7 and survive temperatures as low as 5 degrees Fahrenheit.  

Some varieties of the can also produce berries that last through the winter for a decorative effect. The slow-growing shrub has dark green or reddish green lethargy leaves that can make a striking foliage cover in your pot. 

The shrubs are drought-resistant, but a prolonged dry spell will result in leaves returning white. The plant thrives in partial shade and well-draining soil with an acidic pH. 

4) Opt for Evergreen Trailing Plants 

Home and garden concept of english ivy plant in pot on the balcony
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Trailing plants are an ideal inclusions to the hanging baskets, as they cascade down to create a lush display. These plants bring freshness to your backyard and are not particularly fussy about growing.  

One great example of an evergreen trailing plant is the English ivy. It is a fast-growing plant with dense foliage of dark green leaves on climbing vines that grow 50 to 100 inches in height.

It survives between Zone 4 to 9 and can handle temps as low as 10 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit if you acclimatize them. 

The plant is shade-tolerant and survives in most soil conditions as long as the soil is alkaline and not waterlogged. Water the plant only once the top half inch of soil feels dry, and avoid wetting the leaves.   

5) Get Creative

white and purple flowers hanging
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Instead of sticking to one plant per pot, let your creative juices flow: Add various flowers, ferns, trailing ivy, and shrubs that can survive the winters to a single hanging basket. 

The best way to go about it is to opt for plants with similar water, soil, and light needs. Most plants that survive outdoors in cold, severe conditions are low maintenance, as they can tolerate partial light and occasional watering. 

Choose a winter flowering plant for the center of the pot, like pansies, cyclamens, or winter-flowering heathers. Surround the pot with foliage and complete your masterpiece with trailing ivy!

Exuberant Hanging Baskets to Combat the Winter Blues

There is no reason why you cannot enjoy some stunning flower arrangements and lush foliage when you look out the window this winter. Therefore, get your hanging planters and create the most epic plant arrangements for a cheery backyard. 

Which plants would you choose for your hanging planters? Comment below!