So our front door refresh project that I thought we would knock out over a couple of weekends is still a work in progress almost a full month later. Who knew the prep work was going to be so tedious and time consuming or that we'd get jungle like conditions where the paint just wouldn't dry due to the humidity or heaven forbid, life would happen! Every day I'm learning patience. (You can check out our front door mock ups here and how we chose the perfect shade of blue here.)
We got our plants repotted and hung up a couple of weeks ago, though, and even though the paint work isn't complete, the plants make it look a thousand times better and more polished. The previous owners already had some small chains hanging down on either side of the door where I'm guessing they had hung some plants. I've always loved ferns so I decided to channel my love for Charleston where it seems nearly every house has them hanging on their front porch and add them to either side of the door. But first, I wanted to put them in some pretty hanging baskets.
I've always loved the look of English hanging baskets and decided to give them a try. I'm not gonna lie, I have zero experience repotting plants and a fear of killing them, and plus, my Type A personality makes every project harder and bigger than it is in my mind so I was a little afraid of this project for some reason. I was like, "Did I buy ferns too big for our space?" "Did I buy baskets too small for the ferns?" "Are they going to die the next day after I repot them?" Am I going to put them in crooked and they look all janky?" "What if this is a total flop and I just wasted all my money?" I know, crazy right? Just plant the dang things already. It is just ferns, Whitney! #confessionsofaperfectionist. Good news, though, repotting these was easier than I imagined and so far they're still alive, although, maybe not looking quite as lush as when we first bought them. So below is what I used and did and at the end I'll share the one thing I would do differently. No, this project wasn't perfect and I'm learning to be okay with that.
Sorry for the haze in a couple of the images, but like I said we were having some crazy humidity and no matter how many times I wiped my lens it kept clouding over on me. These are the plastic hangers that the ferns came in.
What I Used
- I went with this potting soil by Miracle Gro mainly because you don't have to worry about feeding your plants for 3 months and I knew I probably wouldn't remember to do that. Now I know I don't have to worry about it until the end of summer and I'm ready to plant something else in these containers.
- These are the planters I went with from Home Depot. I think they were close to $5 a piece. Not too bad for something a little prettier than the plastic and that I can use over and over again.
How I Did It
- I snipped the wires from the top of the hook to make it easier to remove the plant and than laid it on it's side and it actually slid out pretty easily.
- The instructions on the back of the tag suggested putting soil into the bottom of the planter, but I ended it up taking it out because the ferns were a little too big for the new planter. (See what I would differently below)
- I set the fern center in the basked and than stabilizing the fern with one hand I added soil along the sides with the other. I filled the soil to the top of the brown liner.
- I hung them up at my desired height and than gave them some water and here they are in all their glory!
What I Would Have Done Differently
- I either would have bought bigger planters or smaller ferns because like I said earlier, my ferns were actually too tall for these planters. It's not really that big of a deal, but I was kind of worried that it might not be good for the plants, but so far it's been okay. We shall see! The lady at the nursery said I could bring the ferns back if they were too big, but honestly I just wanted to get the job done, so I went with it.
Here's a before without the plants and before I repainted the iron work. Notice how red and rusty it was. Between painting and sanding, that was a five day job itself. (Later I'll be sharing a tool that my neighbor let me borrow towards the end that will make your life a thousand times easier if you decide you need to paint and sand your railings.)
And here it is in all its fresh black paint and planted glory! It makes me so much happier when I'm walking up to our front door now. Keeping my fingers crossed that we can get the stoop painted this week. My awesome husband has been working hard at stripping the old paint so the new paint will adhere better and last longer.