Apartment living can often feel like you don’t have enough space for a garden, but this is not the case. Even a Juliet balcony can be livened up with a flower box! With a little work and imagination, you could create a relaxing oasis on your balcony, and we’ve got some tips to help get you started.
- How much weight can your balcony take?
First things first, you need to know the type of balcony you’re working with. Before you head out to your local nursery, make sure that you find out your balcony’s weight-bearing capacity, and strictly adhere to it.
- Consider your “plot”
Now you know how much weight your balcony can bear, take a step outside and assess the environment of your balcony; is it hot? Windy? In direct sunlight? Ensure that the types of plants you buy will be able to survive and flourish on your balcony. We recommend plants that aren’t going to grow big, otherwise every other weekend will be dedicated to trimming them down to size. An assistant at your local plant nursery should be able to help you choose the right plants for your area.
- Choose the right pots
This is a fun part – choosing beautiful pots and containers for your plants really helps to bring your garden together. Make sure the pots you choose will fit the growth of the particular plant it houses, has good drainage, and adheres to weight restrictions. Other than that, have fun designing and styling with pots and don’t take it too seriously as you can just remove them if they don’t work.
- Embrace vertical gardening
A wall is not just a wall – it is prime real estate! If you’re short on floor space, it’s time to get a bit creative. A vertical garden could be just what it needs to create a lush feature of otherwise wasted space. Depending on your budget, these can be designed and made for you, or you can make your own with a mountable planter you can get at a nursery or home improvement store.
- Hanging gardens
Hanging gardens are also a great alternative to pots that take up floor space. A couple hanging pots at varying heights in the corner can make a funky feature. Hanging gardens look great with plants that tend to hang over the side.
- Plant a herb or vegetable garden
If you love cooking with fresh herbs and want that extra satisfaction that comes with knowing you’ve grown them yourself, the good news is that balconies are perfect places to house them! Try planting garlic, rosemary, thyme and parsley to start you off and add your favourites as you go.
- Outdoor furniture
The only limits you have with outdoor furniture are the weight restrictions and the size. An outdoor day bed, bench seating, or bistro table are space saving options you can use to relax and unwind.
- Water feature
Water features can add to a balcony’s atmosphere and tranquillity, and usually work well on balconies because they’re close to the power and water supply. Ask the advice of your local garden and homewares store about which water feature would suit your balcony.
- Our top tips for the best balcony-loving plants?
- If your balcony is buffeted by the wind, try plants with stiff leaves such as the indian hawthorn. Have a look at the different varieties and choose one that suits you.
- Coastal rosemary is a great choice for balconies, as it is not only native by it is also easily pruned into different designs.
- If you’re after something low maintenance that won’t shrivel up in hot weather, have a look at succulents. These are also great for making an impact due to their architectural leaves.