Living Bouquet Baskets- click here to learn how!

Living Bouquet Basket for shade

King’s has specialized in hanging baskets for many years. None are more fun to make or grow than the mixed baskets of flowers we call Living Bouquets. Planted and maintained correctly, they will give you an entire season of colorful blossoms. Making your own basket can be lots of fun, although quite a challenge for us to explain. The following is a guideline to get you started. If you have questions or need advice, drop by the Nursery; we’ll be happy to help.


What you will need:

A hanging basket, 12” in diameter or larger

A swivel hanger for the basket

Sphagum moss to line the basket

A bucket with water

Quality potting soil – we use MasterNursery “Professional Potting Soil”

Fertilizer – we use a combination of Master Start and Osmocote

A soil polymer such as SoilMoist (optional)

A selection of flowers, veggies, herbs, or greens


We need to grasp the concept that the moss is merely a liner around the basket used to hold in the soil. The moss is easy to work with when wet. That’s why we have the bucket. Submerge the moss in the bucket full of water. With the basket in front of you, take the moist pieces of moss out of the bucket. Smash the piece flat like a hamburger patty. Place the flattened moss in the bottom of the basket. Continue lining the bottom and sides of the basket, slightly overlapping flattened pieces of moss. Continue up the sides until you are about 1/3 of the way up. Remember the moss is merely a liner to hold the soil. There is no reason to completely fill the basket with moss. What you should now have resembles a bird’s nest in the bottom of the basket.


Into the nest, or depression, you want to pack in your potting soil/fertilizer mixture. Bringing it right up to the top of the moss. Your soil mix should consist of 1/3 cubic foot Potting Soil, 1/3 cup Osmocote, 2 Tbsp Master Start, and 1 to 2 Tbsp SoilMoist.


Now come the first of your plants. For a 12” basket, we only want to put 4 plants on the bottom layer. From the inside out – that means you are threading the foliage through the wire from the inside – place one plant at 12 o’clock, one plant at 3 o’clock, one plant and 6 o’clock, and one plant at 9 o’clock. Make sure the foliage extends outside the basket and the roots are inside, in good contact with the soil.


Smash down more moss and line the basket another 1/3 of the way up. Add more soil mixture to the top of the moss, packing down firmly, thus covering the roots of the plants already in the basket. On this layer put 6 plants, bracketing the 4 on the bottom row. When you have placed them to your satisfaction, continue lining the basket with moss all the way to the top, and slightly over the edge of the basket. Fill the basket to about 1” from the top with soil and pack down firmly. Plant 5 or more flowers in the top of the basket; 4 equaly spaced near the edges and one in the middle.


Carefully attach the wire hanger and water thoroughly but gently. You are now ready to hang the basket. Choose a location that is compatible with the plants you have chosen. As the basket matures, it will need more and more water. Daily during the summer is not too much. Water slowly and thoroughly. One gallon applied slowly is more efficient than three gallons squirted on. From time to time we feed with Maxsea, a superior liquid plant food.


When the season ends for your basket, you may salvage the basket, hanger, and some of the better moss. We always start over with new soil, fresh moss, and new plants. This produces a superior basket. That’s the entire procedure. Try not to skip any of the steps or materials as each is very important to the overall health and beauty od the basket. Remember, if you are confused, call or drop by the Nursery and ask for help. All of us at King’s have made many, many baskets and want yours to turn out great!


Finally, here are some guidelines for plant choices for your basket. Remember to put compatible plants together. All the plants in each basket should have similar requirements as to sun, water, etc.


Spring and Summer plants for the sun:








Golden Fleece


Million Bells



Spring and Summer plants for the shade or part sun:










Fall and Winter plants for sun:



Winter Daisy

Dwarf Snapdragon


maybe Lobelia and Alyssum


Fall and Winter plants for shade and part sun:

English Primrose

Fairy Primrose


Primula obconica


maybe Lobelia, Nemesia, and Schizanthus


Let your imagination run wild. If you discover some new combinations that work for you, we’d love to hear about it…and see pictures!

Deer Resistant List

King’s guide to deer resistant plants. Deer can be a frustrating nuisance, but there is some relief! The following is a sample of shrubs and flowers that deer generally avoid and do well in our area. We do like to recommend that a repellent such as Liquid Fence be used when plants are first planted to protect young foliage. The list is arranged by botanical name followed by common name.


Ageratum houstonianum – Floss Flower

Alcea species – Hollyhock

Celosia cristata – Cockscomb

Centaurea cyanus – Bachelor’s Button

Cleome spinosa – Spider Flower

Coreopsis species – Coreopsis

Cosmos species – Cosmos

Dyssodia tenuiloba – Dahlberg Daisy

Eschscholzia californica – California Poppy

Gaillardia species – Gaillardia

Gypsophila – Baby’s Breath

Helianthus species – Sunflower

Impatients balsamina – Balsam

Impatiens wallerana – Busy Lizzie

Ipomoea species – Morning Glory

Limonium sinuatum – Statice

Lobelia erinus – Lobelia

Lobularia maritima – Sweet Alyssum

Myostis sylvatica – Forget-Me-Not

Nigella damascena – Love-in-the-Mist

Papaver rhoeas – Shirley Poppy

Portulaca grandiflora – Rose Moss

Salvia species – Sage

Sanvitalia procumbens – Creeping Zinnia

Scabiosa atropurpurea – Pincushion Flower

Senecio cineraria – Dusty Miller

Tithonia rotundiflora – Mexican Sunflower


Achillea species – Yarrow

Alcea rosea – Hollyhock

Aloe species – Aloe

Alstromeria – Peruvian Lily

Anenome japonica

Aquilegia – Columbine

Armeria maritima – Common Thrift

Artemesia species – Wormwood


Aster species – Perennial Asters

Astilbe – Meadow Sweet

Aubrieta deltoidea – Common Aubrieta

Aurinia saxatilis – Perennial Alyssum

Bellis perennis – English Daisy

Beloperone guttata – Shrimp Plant

Bergenia – Saxifraga

Brachycome iberdifolia – Swan River Daisy

Centaurea cineraria – Dusty Miller

Centranthus ruber – Jupiter’s Beard

Chrysanthemum frutescens – Marguerite

Chrysanthemum partenuim – Feverfew

Coreopsis species

Dicentra species – Bleeding Heart

Digitalis species – Foxglove

Echium fastuosum – Pride of Madeira

Erigeron glaucus – Santa Barbara Daisy

Eriogonom species – Buckwheat

Erysimum linifolium – Bowle’s Mauve

Euryops species

Felicia amelloides – Blue Marguerite

Galium odoratum – Sweet Woodruff

Geranium – Cranesbill

Gerbera jamesonii – Transvaal Daisy

Gypsophila – Baby’s Breath

Helichrysum species – Strawflower

Helleborus niger – Christmas Rose

Hemerocallis – Daylily

Heuchera sanguinea – Coral Bells

Iris species

Kniphofia uvaria – Red Hot Poker

Lantana montevidensis – Trailing Lantana

Lavandula species – Lavener

Leonotis leonurus – Lion’s Tail

Limonium – Sea Lavender

Liriope muscari – Lily Turf

Lobelia cardinalis – Cardinal Flower

Lupinus species – Lupine

Lychnis coronaria – Crown Pink

Mimulus – Monkey Flower

Mirabilis – Four O’Clock

Monarda species – Bee Balm

Nepeta faassenii – Catmint

Nierembergia species – Cupflower

Oenothera species – Evening Primrose

Origanum dictamnus – Crete Dittany

Papaver orientale – Oriental Poppy

Penstemon – Beard Tongue

Phlox subulata – Moss Pink

Rudbeckia hirta – Gloriosa Daisy

Ruta graveolens – Common Rue

Salvia species – Sage, Salvia

Santolina chamaecyparissus- Lavender Cotton

Scabiosa columbaria – Pincushion Flower

Silene acaulis – Cushion Pink

Stachys byzantina – Lamb’s Ear

Tagetes lemmonii – Bush Marigold

Tropaeolum – Nasturtium

Tulbaghia violacae – Society Garlic

Verbena peruviana – Peruvian Verbena

Viola odorata – Sweet Violet

Zantendeschia – Calla Lily


Alstromeria – Peruvian Lily

Amaryllis belladonna – Naked Lady

Begonia – Tuberous Begonia


Crocosmia – Montbretia



Cymbidium – Terrestrial orchids

Cypripedium californicum – Lady Slipper

Dahlia imperialis – Tree Dahlia


Fritillaria imperialis – Crown Imperial

Galanthus elwesii – Giant Snowdrop


Muscari – Grape Hyacinth

Narcissus – Daffodil

Scillia – Blue Bells

Watsonia – Bugle Lily

Zantedeschia – Calla Lily

Grasses (and grass-like plants):

Acorus variegatus – Japanese Sweet Flag

Alopecurus pretensis “Aureovariegatus” – Yellow Meadow Foxtail

Arundinaria viridistriata – Dwarf Running Bamboo

Arundo donax – Reed Grass

Briza maxima/media – Quacking Grass

Calamagrostis – Feather Reed Grass

Carex – Sedge Grass

Deschampsia caespitosa – Tufted Hair Grass

Dietes – Fortnight Lily

Festuca – Fescue

Hakonechloa – Golden

Imperata – Japanese Blood Grass

Juncus – Common Rush

Miscanthus – Feather Grass

Molinia – Purple Moor Grass

Pennisetum – Fountain Grass

Phalaris – Ribbon Grass

Phormium – New Zealand Flax

Stipa gigantea – Feather Grass

Vines and Groundcover:

Ajuga reptans – Carpet Bugle

Anthemis nobilis – Chamomile

Bougainvillea species

Campsis species – Trumpet Creeper

Carpobrotus edulis – Ice Plant

Ceratostigma plumbaginoides – Dwarf Plumbago

Chamaemelum nobile – Chamomile

Clematis armandii – Evergreen Clematis

Coprosma kirkii – Creepingn Coprosma

Erodium chamaedryoides – Crane’s Bill

Ficus pumilla – Creeping Fig

Gazania species

Gelsemium sempervirens – Carolina Jasmine

Hedera helix – English Ivy

Herniaria glabra – Green Carpet

Irish moss

Isotoma – Blue Star Creeper

Jasminium species – Jasmine

Juniper species – Juniper

Lithidora diffusa

Lotus berthelotii – Parrot’s Beak

Mint species

Myoporum parvifolium – Creeping Myoporum

Muehlenbeckia – Mattress Vine

Osteospermum fruticosum – Trailing African Daisy

Pachysandra terminalis – Japanese Spurge

Polygonum – Knotweed

Scaevola – Mauve Clusters

Solanum jasminoides – Potato Vine

Stachys byzantina – Lamb’s Ears

Thumbergia alata – Black-Eyed Susan Vine

Thymus species

Vinca species – Periwinkle

Viola odorata – Sweet Violet

Wisteria species – Wisteria

Zauschneria californica – California Fuschia


Acer palmatum – Japanese Maples

Aesculus calofirnica – California Buckeye

Albeisia – Silk Tree

Arbutus – Strawberry Tree

Catalpa species

Cinnamomum camphora – Camphor Tree

Conifers: cedar, fir, pine, redwood, spruce

Cotinus coggyria – Smoke Tree

Crataegus species – Ash

Diospyros – Persimmon

Eucalyptus species

Ficus carica – Fruiting Fig

Fraxinus species – Ash

Ginko biloba – Maidenhair Tree

Lagerstroma indica – Crepe Myrtle

Laurus nobilis – Grecian Laurel

Liquidamber styraciflua – Sweet Gum

Magnolia species – Magnolia

Maytenus boaria – Mayten Tree

Olea europaea – Olive

Pistachia chinensis – Chinese Pistache

Podocarpus granatum – Yew Pine

Punica granatum – Pomegranate

Quercus species – Oak

Quince – Fruiting Quince

Rhus species – Sumac

Scinus species – Pepper Tree

Sequoia sempervirens – Coast Redwood

Thuja plicata – Western Red Cedar

Umbellularia californica – California Bay

Bushes and shrubs:

All Ferns

Agapanthus species – Lily of the Nile

Alyogyne huegelii – Blue Hibiscus

Arctostaphylos – Manzanita

Bamboo species

Berberis species – Barberry

Brugmansia – Angel’s Trumpet

Buddleia – Butterfly Bush

Buxus species – Boxwood

Callistemon species – Bottlebrush

Ceanothus – Wild Lilac

Chaenomeles species – Flowering Quince

Choisya ternata – Mexican Mock Orange

Cistus species – Rockrose

Clivia miniata – Kaffir Lily

Coleonema pulchrum – Pink Breath of Heaven

Convovulus cneorum – Bush Morning Glory

Coprosma kirkii – Dwarf Mirror Plant

Cordyline autralis – Dracena Palm

Corokia cotoneaster – Twisted Cotoneaster

Correa pulchella – Australian Fuchsia

Cotoneaster lacteus – Red Clusterberry

Crassula argentea – Jade Plant

Cyperus species – Papyrus

Daphne species – daphne

Dendromecon harfordii – Island Bush Poppy

Dodonaea viscosa – Hop Bush

Dracena species – Dragon Palm

Echium fastuosum – Pride of Madeira

Echium wildpretii – Tower of Jewels

Elaeagnus species – Silverberry

Erica – Heath

Eriogonum arboresscens – Wild Buckwheat

Euphorbia species – Spurge

Fatsia japonica – Japanese Aralia

Feijoa sellowiana – Pineapple Guava

Ferns – all types

Forsythia species – Forsythia

Fremontodendron – Flannel Bush

Garrya elliptica – coastal Silktassle

Gaultheria shallon – Salal

Geranium – Cranesbill

Geranium – scented varieties

Grevellia species – Grevellia

Hakea sauveolens – Sweet hakea

Halimium lasianthum – Sunrose

Hebe buxifolia – Boxleaf Hebe

Helianthemim nummularium – Sun Rose

Heteromeles arbutifolia – Toyon

Hypericum calycinum – St. John’s Wort

Ilex species – Holly

Impatiens oliveri – Snapweed, Poor Man’s Rhododendron

Iris species – Iris

Juniperus species – Juniper

Kniphofia uvaria – Red Hot Poker

Kolkwitzia amabilis – Beauty Bush

Lagerstoemia indica – Crepe Myrtle

Lavandula species – Lavender

Leptospermum species – Tea Tree

Loropetalum chinense – Chinesse Witch Hazel

Lupinus arboreus – Lupine

Mahonia species – Oregon Grape

Melaleuca species – Melaleuca

Melianthus major – Honey Bush

Metrosideros excelsus – New Zealand Christmas Tree

Moraea iridiodes – African Iris

Myoporum species – Myoporum

Myrica californica – Pacific Wax Myrtle

Myrtus communis – Common Myrtle

Nandina domestica – Heavenly Bamboo

Nerium oleander – Oleander

Philadelphus coronarius – Sweet Mock Orange

Philodendron selloum – Bigleaf Philodendron

Phlomis fruiticosa – Jerusalem Sage

Phormium tenax – New Zealand Flax

Pieris species – Pieris

Plumbago auriculata – Cpae Plumbago

Poinciana gilliesii – Bird of Paradise Bush

Potentilla fruiticosa – Bush Cinquefoil

Prostanthera rotundifolia – Mint Bush

Punica granatum – Pomegranate

Quercus – Oak

Rhamnus californica – California Coffeeberry

Rhododendron species – Rhododendron (not Azaleas)

Rhus species – Sumac

Ribes species – Currant, Gooseberry

Romneya coulteri – Matilija Poppy

Rosmarinus officinalis – Rosemary

Ruhus vitifolius – Blackberry

Salvia secies – Salvia, Sage

Sambucus caerulea – Blue Elderberry

Sarcococca species – Sarcococca, Sweet Box

Sollya heterophylla – Australian Bluebell

Strelitzia species – Bird of Paradise

Syringa species – Common Lilac

Syzygium paniculatum – Brush Cherry

Tamaarix species – Tamarisk

Tellima grandiflora – Fringe Cup

Tetrapanax papyruferus – Rice Paper Plant

Teucrium fruticans – Bush Germander

Thuya / Thuja scpecies – Arborvitae

Westringia rosmariniformis – Westringa

Yucca glauca – Small Soapweed

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