Plan ahead for ENVY OF THE NEIGHBORHOOD hanging ferns!

It was May 2013 when I asked you this question…



I asked the same question over at Hometalk where the post (so far) has




71,000 Facebook shares


204,000 pins on Pinterest


It’s popular.


Seems like a good time to reprise it here…

My favorite homes here in the South have big front porches with huge hanging baskets of lush green Boston ferns. Apparently I’m not alone. At this time of year, the garden centers sell out quickly. Renaissance Man and I recently bought our usual six for the front porch … plus the “necessaries” for planting them.


You’ll have better luck if you don’t leave the plants in their original plastic pots. Instead, replant them using coir-lined wire baskets and a good-quality potting mix. The pics below show you how. Step 7 isn’t always necessary, but you want to be sure your chains are secure before hanging. Ferns get very heavy when wet, and you don’t want them to fall! Step 8 is an absolute “must” when it comes to ferns.


Click pics once — or twice! — to enlarge.


Hang each basket on a sturdy hook screwed into solid wood … and then keep them watered all Summer long … twice a day … every day. [record scratch] Who has time for that?

YOU do! See the black tube Renaissance Man is positioning in the fern? It’s an automatic drip watering system on a timer — and it waters our ferns all Summer long … twice a day … every day … even when we’re not home!


The system is made by Rainbird, and we bought the components at Home Depot (but this is not an advertisement for HD and you can probably get them elsewhere as well.)

In the big picture below, you can see a black tube running horizontally near the porch ceiling. One end connects to a water faucet. The other end is capped. Wherever we have a hanging fern, Renaissance Man added a vertical drip line. One end (Steps 1-7) connects to the horizontal tube while the “loose” end gets a drip nozzle added to it then hangs in the fern. We’ve found it works best to zip-tie the drip line to the hanging chain so it doesn’t blow out and water the porch. (Step 10)


On the faucet connection end, we added a timer. Right now, since it’s still fairly cool here in East Tennessee, ours is set to water once a day for 5 minutes. By mid-Summer, we’ll be watering for 10 minutes twice a day.

Our system is hooked up to the faucet in the basement, but yours can be anywhere.

Before hanging ferns, this is what the watering system looks like.

After …

After just a couple of really good drinks …


You can’t imagine how large and lush these babies will be by October! I’ll have to remember to show you. With just a little measuring and easy installation, yours can, too! Go ahead … “pin it” — and try it!

You can use this system for any kind of hanging baskets; just be sure to adjust the amount of water depending on what plants you use.

UPDATE: If your hanging baskets will drip/splash on a wood surface, don’t make the mistake we did! READ THIS POST FIRST.


AND if you want to use this drip system in your flower beds—so you’ll have beautiful plants all Summer long—check this out.


So go ahead… Scroll down just a tad. See those cute little “share this” icons? Click one—or two—and share this post with family and friends… just not the ones in your neighborhood! 😉

Thanks so much for stopping by today. I always enjoy and appreciate your visits! Have a wonderful weekend.

P.S.  For the first time in I-can’t-remember-how-long we have an absolutely gorgeous warm, sun-filled weekend ahead here in East Tennessee! (Insert reeaallly big smile.)  Renaissance Man and I are headed to the farm to work on fences… and hopefully plane some reclaimed wood.


  1. I have awful luck with ferns, but I absolutely love them. I think i wasnt watering enough. Ill be trying again this year.
    New to your blog,, your ferns are beautiful!