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How to Hang Houseplants From the Ceiling in 5 Simple Steps

Written by MasterClass

Last updated: Sep 2, 2020 • 3 min read

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Ron Finley Teaches Gardening

A hanging planter is a creative way to accent your home decor. When combined with tasteful wall art, a plant hanger with a potted indoor plant livens up a living space.

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Ron Finley Teaches GardeningRon Finley Teaches Gardening

Community activist and self-taught gardener Ron Finley shows you how to garden in any space, nurture your plants, and grow your own food.

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5 Simple Steps for Hanging Plants From the Ceiling

A hanging basket is an accessible DIY project that requires just a few tools—all of which you can find at your local hardware store. You can install a hanging basket in a few simple steps.

  1. Assemble your materials. You will need ceiling hooks (curved swag hooks work best), a hinged clip, hanging chain, and a drill with the proper drill bit (5/8-inch is the right size for most ceiling hooks). You'll also need the potted plant itself.
  2. Find the right location. The most reliable way to mount indoor hanging plants is into a stud of solid wood such as a ceiling joist; if you own a stud finder, you can use it to locate the closest joist. If a stud is not conveniently accessible, you can also install a hanging plant pot into ordinary ceiling drywall, provided that you use a swag hook with hinged clip that opens out once you push it through the drywall.
  3. Drill a hole in the ceiling. Using the 5/8-inch drill bit, firmly press your drill into the ceiling. If you're drilling into a solid stud, the process is straightforward. If you're drilling into sheetrock with no stud behind it, you'll need to widen your hole to fit in the hinged clip. The clip will expand once it gets past the drywall, which makes it difficult to remove without damaging the ceiling, so make sure you're putting it in the right spot.
  4. Install the hook. For solid wood installation, screw the swag hook into the hole you pre-drilled. For installation into drywall, thread your hook into the hinged clip, then push the whole apparatus into the ceiling until the clip expands and holds in place. Ideally the hole you made to fit the clip will be covered by the base of the swag hook. If not, you will need to patch the ceiling.
  5. Hang your plant. With your hanging pot holder now in place, you're ready to hang your plant. There are many designs to choose from (shelf-style plant hangers, twine hangers, handmade macrame plant hangers, heavy-duty chain hangers), so make sure you choose a design that functionally supports your plant pot and matches the decor of your room.

Hanging plants fit nicely in living rooms, dining rooms, bedrooms, and kitchens. You can also use hangers for outdoor plants by attaching the hook a trellis or porch overhang.

7 Plants That Are Perfect for Hanging Baskets

If you’re starting a hanging indoor garden, there are few plant species that particularly thrive in hanging baskets.

  1. String of pearls: These bead-like succulents (Curio rowleyanus) spill over the edge of a hanging basket. They require little maintenance, which allows you to hang them in somewhat high locations.
  2. Burro's tail: The burro's tail (or donkey's tail) plant, scientifically known as Sedum morganianum, is another succulent that thrives with minimal water. It grows best in bright light, so hang it in a sunny window.
  3. Pothos: The pothos plant (Epipremnum aureum) is famous for growing long vines from a relatively small hanging basket. When properly watered, the plant's capacity for growth is almost boundless. You can find pothos plants for sale in nearly any hardware store or supermarket.
  4. Satin philodendron: Sometimes called philodendron silver (Scindapsus pictus 'Exotica'), this hanging plant looks like a glamorous version of pothos, with silver-flecked, satiny leaves. It grows well in low light, which saves valuable window space for another plant.
  5. Hoya obovata: The Hoya obovata is a semi-succulent plant, which means it has waxy leaves that can store moisture. These plants grow well in hanging pots as well as wall planters that attach to vertical surfaces rather than the ceiling.
  6. Spider plants: Spider plants (Chlorophytum comosum) are perfect plants for suspended baskets. When mature, they spill over the sides of the pot, sometimes obscuring it altogether. For this reason, they can look great with a handmade macrame hanger.
  7. Air plants: The genus Tillandsia consists of small plants that pull their moisture from the air. Since they don’t require soil, they’re perfect for hanging. Rather than water these plants, mist them with a spray bottle.
Ron Finley Teaches Gardening
Ron Finley Teaches Gardening
Ron Finley Teaches Gardening
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Grow your own food with Ron Finley, the self-described "Gangster Gardener." Get the MasterClass All-Access Pass and learn how to cultivate fresh herbs and vegetables, keep your house plants alive, and use compost to make your community - and the world - a better place.

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