Hanging Baskets & Nursery
In 2012, Victoria's trademark hanging flower baskets celebrated their 75th anniversary.
Growing and Assembly
Plants for the baskets are grown in the City of Victoria's nursery, located in the southeast corner of Beacon Hill Park. In late April, a crew of six gardeners begins construction of approximately 1,350 hanging baskets. This process takes place over a four-week period.
After the baskets are made, they remain in the City's greenhouses for one week before being moved outside to acclimatize to the conditions they will encounter on the streets. During the second week of June, the baskets are placed on the City's signature lampposts.
Parks staff water the hanging baskets every night throughout the summer, from 10:45 p.m. to 7:15 a.m. Trucks transport water in 2,250 litre tanks, and handheld wands are used to water the flowers. Parks staff give each basket 6.5 litres of water containing a trace amount of fertilizer. Baskets in exposed areas are watered 6 - 7 times per week, whereas baskets in sheltered locations are watered 4 - 5 times per week, depending on the weather.
In addition, baskets are sampled weekly for moisture content, pH and soluble salt levels and appropriate corrective measures are taken, if required.
Shade baskets were introduced in the 1990s. As the City's boulevard trees grew larger and cast more shade, it became apparent that an alternative to the 'traditional' sun basket was needed. Nursery staff decided to try Impatiens baskets with Rhodochition as a trailing plant. Trials continue today as new Impatiens varieties become available. Shade baskets have now expanded into new shade locations where sun baskets would never have reached their full potential.
In 2014, the shade baskets will feature Summer Wings Begonias instead of Impatiens due to a fungal disease known as Downy Mildew, which has struck Impatiens in the UK in 2003 and more recently in North America.
How to Make Your Own Sun Basket
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To learn more about the City's hanging baskets and how to make your own, view our hanging basket brochure. [PDF - 423 KB]
Print copies are available at Victoria City Hall and the Crystal Pool and Fitness Centre.