The Most Important Things To Consider Before Starting A Balcony Garden

Living in a big city has its perks, but one of them is not space for a garden. What you might have is a balcony. If so, why not start a balcony garden? There are a few things to consider, however, before you begin. For one thing, the direction the balcony faces and how high up it is are both important factors. These things are part of understanding the light and shade conditions you're working with.

Another thing to consider is weight. While most of the time the average balcony should be able to support the weight of most balcony garden ideas, it's important to keep it in mind. When considering containers, get creative and utilize multiple materials and types. You can even choose lightweight mediums for planting in. Of course, the most exciting part is choosing the type of plants you want to include. But before you can do that, you'll need to take into consideration the following information.

Understanding your balcony's weather conditions

If you have a north-facing balcony, you'll need to buy plants that will thrive in shade or mostly shade conditions. However, if you have an east-facing balcony, you'll get morning sun only, and west-facing balconies will get sunshine in the afternoon only. South-facers will get plenty of direct sun, but they'll need to be careful during the hottest part of the summer and make sure that their plants get plenty of water and don't get burned. Notice which areas of the balcony get shade, either for part of the day or all of the time.

Additionally, think about wind conditions. You might be surprised to know that one of the biggest problems people have with balcony gardens is wind control. If you know it tends to get windy on your balcony, you'll need to plan ahead to provide a sheltered area for your plants. Whether you want to plant an edible garden, a flower garden, or a beautiful green paradise, you can use small potted trees or shrubs to help create an area protected from the wind. You could also use a balcony privacy screen, umbrella, or canopy. The higher up you are, the more you may have to worry about the wind.

Utilizing your space's potential

Another important factor is utilizing the space you already have. Since you're working with a limited amount, you'll want to exploit every inch possible! Therefore, think about hanging some of your plants or trying some other vertical gardening ideas. You could put some shelves up on the walls, use stackable planters, or employ plant stands with shelves. Climbing plants like ivies can be grown up trellises, railings, or walls. There are lots of wonderfully creative ideas that can help you find the perfect balance for your balcony garden.

Always check with your apartment manager or COA (condominium owners association) to make sure there are no restrictions and double-check the weight limitations for your balcony. When you water your plants, remember this will add considerable weight to regular potting soil. When it comes to watering, try using a large but lightweight collapsible watering can that you can fill in the bathtub. Even smarter would be to get an adapter for a garden hose to hook up to your sink. Have fun with your balcony garden, and design a tropical utopia that'll be the envy of all your neighbors!