Creating a Beautiful Balcony Garden: Steps for Beginners

By bringing nature right to your door, creating a green area on your balcony or patio not only improves your well-being but also adds beauty and the potential to supply fresh food for your kitchen. This project fits well with any potted plants you may want to add to your interior area while you are at the garden center because there is no natural soil on a balcony.

The saying “Life begins the day you start a garden” is a Chinese adage. With the arrival of spring and the start of a new season, AD chatted with three professionals about the four easy steps involved in creating a garden on your balcony.

Do a preliminary investigation and survey your area.

Make sure you can put trellises in your area by checking the laws of your building twice before you begin. It’s important to find out if painting your balcony’s sidewalls is allowed as well. Determine what you can grow based on your local climate from there. Entering your zip code into the USDA Hardiness Zone Map will make this process simple.

Next, see which plants are most appropriate for your area, as each balcony has a unique set of considerations. For instance, is your area exposed to the light all day long? Is it exposed to the weather and becomes chilly and windy? Depending on how much the weather affects you, you must.

Decide what to plant.

You should choose what you wish to achieve: Is it hue-based? Verdancy? Or maybe a fresh ingredient larder outside? According to PanAmerican Seed’s vegetable accounts manager Josh Kirschenbaum, impatiens are the plant for you if you want flower-filled pots but have little to no light. They come in pink, violet, and red colors with white for a striking contrast, and they offer excellent flower coverage.

Alternatively, consider planting a “Shangri-La” philodendron, which will transform your balcony into a veritable tropical retreat with its broad split-leaf branches. Try these kinds for a touch of lush, green beauty.

Try a dragon wing Begonia, Kirschenbaum advises, if your balcony receives some sunlight. “This begonia is very forgiving of neglect and still puts on a rich color show, making it a great choice for the balcony gardener looking for low-maintenance but high-impact plant,” he explains. “It looks amazing no matter what—wind, drought, sun, or shade.”

Obtain the appropriate items.

It’s always a good idea to scour flea markets for unique things that might be used as planters or to carry over your inside design concept. For ideas, visit garden shops and home décor stores. Select pots and planters, along with an overall color scheme and maybe an old ladder to use instead of a shelf.

“The container size should be large and sturdy enough to hold enough soil volume for the plant and its root system,” suggests Kirschenbaum. Additionally, bigger pots will hold onto moisture better, and watering containers consistently requires more irrigation than plantings in the ground.

Contribute a little to the environment.

Considering the “reduce, reuse, recycle” tenet, you might want to set aside a section of your kitchen or outside area for composting. According to National Garden Bureau spokesperson Gail Pabst, “composting allows you to feed house plants and balcony containers, reduces household waste, and saves you a trip to the dumpster.” “A ceramic compost crock such as this one is ideal for collection.”

Creating Gardens for Balconies

Your balcony micro-scape may be designed once the sun aspect and weight restrictions have been established. Use the plethora of container possibilities that various providers will have to offer, or push the envelope with your inventive ideas, to be creative with the limited area. Create a herb garden for the epicurean or a kitchen garden to grow some of your products.

You may achieve the best of both worlds by skillfully blending food and flowers. When you are planning, think about using the “thriller, spiller, and filler” planting strategy. This method uses several different types in a single pot; the thriller is the main upright, the spiller falls over the pot, and the filler fills in the gaps.

Think about your containers.

Large wooden or terracotta planters and pots are quite appealing and provide plenty of area for all kinds of plants, provided that weight is not a concern. But remember that terra cotta generally dries up quite rapidly. Pots made of plastic and resin provide a lightweight substitute in the widest range of forms, sizes, and self-watering choices.

The gardener can grow a wide range of conventional garden vegetables or individual tiny shrubs or perennials in huge pots and planters. Kitchen herbs, annuals, and perennials grow beautifully in smaller pots and containers. They can be combined with vertical gardening.

Taking a vertical position

Because vertical gardens take advantage of your balcony’s vertical walls, they are a space-saving idea for home gardeners. This approach may be applied in a variety of inventive ways, such as terracing on planter stairs, hanging gutters from a chain, or utilizing pallets loaded with dirt and fastened to the wall.

The drawback of a vertical garden is that watering from above and dripping from a height might cause splashes that can damage the walls. In conjunction with a catchment system at the bottom, drip irrigation is an effective way to prevent this issue.

Baskets hanging or railing

The simplest options for the small balcony are hanging baskets, window boxes, or railing baskets. These containers are designed to hang from the eaves or the balcony railing and are made of plastic, steel, or wood. Smaller or drought-tolerant plants work well in these kinds of baskets because they tend to be shallow and more likely to dry out.

You can plant lettuce, herbs, strawberries, succulents, and annuals in a hanging basket or on a railing. To keep the container from being knocked off by wind or an unintentional jolt, both of these choices should be fastened by brackets, screws, or zap straps.

Repurposed containers

You have the artistic license to experiment with different containers since you are the gardener. Make everyday objects into plant containers by drilling enough holes for water to drain from them to add a touch of your style to the balcony’s landscaping. One option to cut down on waste and save money is to upcycle colorful rubber boots, used yogurt containers, cups, jugs, baskets, or any other type of vessel.

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