Hanging Pitcher Plant Care: Types Of Pitcher Plants For Hanging Baskets

Pitcher Plant In Hanging Basket
hanging pitcher
(Image credit: andipantz)

Pitcher plants are a fantastic addition to the home. They’re a little bit temperamental, but if you’re willing to put in the extra work, you’ll have a striking conversation piece. Keep reading to learn about good pitcher plants for hanging baskets.

Hanging Pitcher Plant Care

Hanging pitcher plants in baskets is the most effective way to grow them. In the wild, the plants vine up trees, and providing them with plenty of empty space will give them the air circulation they crave and allow the pitchers to grow to their full and most impressive extent. Hanging pitcher plants thrive in light, well-draining soil that’s poor in nutrients but high in organic matter. This can be sphagnum moss, coconut fiber, or a store-bought orchid mix. Pitcher plants need high humidity-- water frequently from above and mist daily. Hang your basket somewhere it can receive full sun. Temperature is very important. Most species require daytime temperatures of 80 degrees F. (26 C.) and higher, with a very marked temperature drop at night.

Pitcher Plants for Hanging Baskets

Pitcher plants are native to southeast Asia and northern Australia and, for the most part, crave high temperatures and humid air. Many varieties, however, grow at high elevations and are used to much cooler temperatures. Pitcher plants cross pollinate very easily and, as such, there are a huge number of varieties and quite a few that are able to tolerate low temperatures.

  • Nepenthes khasiana is a species that’s a good choice for beginners. It’s extremely hardy as pitcher plants go, with a tolerance range of 38 to 105 degrees F. (3-40 C.).
  • Nepenthes stenophylla can tolerate a narrower but still wide range of temperatures from 50 to 98 degrees F. (10-36 C.).

If you live in a hot area or have a greenhouse, however, your options are much greater.

  • Nepenthes alata is easy to care for and forms bright red pitchers that can reach 7 inches (18 cm.) in length.
  • Nepenthes eymae produces wide, red speckled pitchers low on the plant and small green pitchers higher up, making for a nice, diverse look.

The number of species is enormous, however, so first get a sense of your area’s temperature range and then look into what’s available.

Liz Baessler
Senior Editor

The only child of a horticulturist and an English teacher, Liz Baessler was destined to become a gardening editor. She has been with Gardening Know how since 2015, and a Senior Editor since 2020. She holds a BA in English from Brandeis University and an MA in English from the University of Geneva, Switzerland. After years of gardening in containers and community garden plots, she finally has a backyard of her own, which she is systematically filling with vegetables and flowers.