Last week, I crossed something off my to-do list that’s been on there a really long time – hanging a plant from our kitchen ceiling! Because goodness knows I didn’t already have enough plants in our home. Nope, I definitely needed two more hanging from the ceiling in our kitchen. And today I’m teaching you how to hang plants from the ceiling, so you can experience the same joy I do every time I look out my kitchen window now.
Doesn’t get much better than that, does it?
I mean, the view might be better with more plants.
But I digress.
how to hang plants from the ceiling
This is a really quick and easy project, and everything you need can be found at your local hardware store. Start to finish, it only took me about 15 minutes. Doesn’t get much better than that!
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Hanging planters. I used these. You can click here to see some other great options! You can also use a macrame hanger with just about any planter – just make sure they have drainage holes!
- A drill + drill bits (click here to learn how to use one!)
- Swag hooks. These come with anchors, so you don’t need to purchase them separately.
decide on a location
Your first step will be to decide where you want the hanging plant to go. I recommend hanging it near a window – it’ll give your plant great light! Make sure you consider which way the window facing and if your plants need full sun or a little less intensity. I chose the window above my kitchen sink – I wanted to be able to see the hanging pots from just about anywhere, and this area was looking pretty blank.
Once you know where it’s going to go generally, you still need to figure out a specific location. My little trick for visualizing it is to use my phone to film myself holding the plant hanger in various locations. I mark the ones I think might work with a pencil. Then I watch the video back to narrow it down. Easy peasy!
Assemble the swag hook
Next, you need to figure out if you have a stud where you want to hang the plant. If you’re hanging your plant outdoors on a patio or covered porch, you can simply screw your ceiling hook into an exposed beam and you’re good to go! If you’re hanging the plant indoors, a few more steps are required.
Use a 1/8″ drill bit to drill a small pilot hole in the ceiling. If you hit a ceiling joist after you’re through the ceiling drywall, great! You don’t need to use any sort of anchor and you’re good to go. You can use the smaller rod-shaped screw that comes with your hook. Just attach it to the hook, and use your hand to screw it right into the ceiling.
You can also use a stud finder for this process, but I find a pilot hole to be more reliable!
If, however, you hit hollow spot when you drill the pilot hole, you’ll need to use the toggle bolt anchor that comes with the kit. Grab a 1/2″ or 5/8″ drill bit and drill a (much) larger hole. It will feel very intimidating. Even terrifying. Don’t worry it’ll be okay.
Once you’ve drilled your larger hole, you’re almost done. Assemble the hook as shown in the photo above. Start with the longer bolt, then screw the toggle bolt onto it until it’s about 1/4 of the way down. Add the hook to the bottom.
Hang the swag hook
Once the hook is assembled, fold the wings of the toggle bolt in (aka: the part that looks like a hinged clip) and push it up into the hole. Push it through until you feel the wings pop open behind the drywall. Give it a gentle tug to make sure it doesn’t come back out.
Now, you might get a little nervous because there’s a big gap between your hook and the ceiling. No worries! Just twist the hook while applying slight downward pressure. It will tighten itself! Keep going until it’s flush with the ceiling.
And just like that, you’re done! Loop that hanging plant rope over the swag hook and enjoy the new view.
what kinds of plants work well on hangers?
There are so many plants that work great in hanging baskets or pots. Here’s a quick list of a few of my favorites:
- Pothos (I’m especially loving Jade Pothos and Neon Pothos right now! The leaves are so fun.)
- Air Plants
- Succulents like Burro’s Tail or String of Pearls
- English Ivy (or really, any vine that will hang over the edge!)
- Creeping Jenny
- Most Hoya varieties
How Can I do It Without Drilling Holes?
Love the idea of a hanging plant but can’t quite commit to 1/2″ holes in your ceiling? No problem. Here are a few other ideas for how you can accomplish the same basic look without any fancy installation needed.
- Use shelves. You know I love a good plant shelf! You can hang some shelves higher up on the wall, and simply add a few drapey plants on the top shelf and you’ve got the same look.
- Use tension rods. The weight capacity will be less than using hook screws or swag hooks, but they can usually hold 10-30 pounds! You could also try rods meant for curtains!
- Try adhesive hooks. You’d be surprised by how much weight some suction cup hangers can hold! If you have any metal fixtures on or near your ceiling that magnets would stick to, a really strong magnetic hook could also be an option.
i’ve been considering this project for a while now, and I’m so glad I finally got it done! I have a short list of other things I’d like to do in here, and this has me feeling all sorts of motivated.