Balcony Garden Ideas to Utilize Your Apartment’s Outdoor Space
We all know that spending time outdoors benefits both your mental health and your well-being.
But while not everyone is lucky enough to have a garden, households with a balcony can also reap the rewards.
Elin Harryson, in-house specialist at Swedish app Planta for plant care, thinks there are clear reasons to use your apartment’s outdoor space.
She said Newsweek“For those who can’t access forests or parks all the time, you can still access the benefits of nature by bringing plants into your space.
“In fact, adding houseplants to small areas like balconies is one of the best ways to maximize your space, as plants can help reduce noise pollution, improve air quality and add privacy to otherwise open apartments, while helping you personalize and decorate your space.”
Here are some of the best balcony garden ideas, according to experts.
Add some greenery to your Balcony Garden apartment
There are a few key considerations plant owners should be aware of when thinking about balcony garden ideas.
Because the plants are usually in pots, it’s important to keep them hydrated. Water plants in the morning to keep moisture from evaporating throughout the day, while avoiding problems such as fungal infections that can occur with evening watering schedules.
Also, when selecting plants, it is important that each species works in your balcony lighting conditions to ensure your plants thrive.
Planta’s Elin Harryson thinks that if you’re lucky enough to live in a place with seasons, “you can invest in a few larger plants that are perennial and in your hardiness zone.”
She added: “If you want your space to be low-maintenance or expect to be away a lot, you can invest in drought-tolerant plants like succulents to ensure your plants survive the holidays.
The importance of drainage
Repotting all balcony plants in large pots with drainage holes is an easy way to maintain your balcony foliage.
Harryson said: “This ensures the plants don’t become under-watered or root-bound during their growing season.
“This is especially important if rain can reach your balcony, as larger, drainable pots help prevent plants from becoming waterlogged.
What to plant in your balcony garden
Matthew Brown, Sadolin & Sandtex Technical Consultant, suggests with smaller spaces, using a “distinctive bold hue, such as blues and oranges, can enliven and energize a space”, and can make it appear larger.
He said Newsweek thinking about balcony garden ideas: “Don’t be afraid to use dark colors; in small spaces, dark colors can create a warm and intimate atmosphere.The following types of plants grow well in pots and would make great additions to your garden.
Growing hydrangeas in containers can be a smart option for people who have limited space and want a nice, compact display of flowering plants.
Harryson said: “When hydrangeas live outdoors they generally like full sun, although exposure to direct light can dry out the soil quickly.
“As such, it’s best to place your hydrangea in a location that receives sun in the morning and shade in the afternoon, to ensure it has the best of both worlds and to prevent drying out. .
“A trick to keep the hydrangea hydrated is to fill the pot to the brim with water before letting it drain completely from the bottom and into the saucer of the plant. Then repeat this process one more time to help your plant avoid being thirsty.”
These hardy shrubs (also called small trees) come in many varieties and grow brilliantly in pots, thanks to their compact, upright stems.
Harryson said: “They tolerate intense sun but stay well shaded and can be surrounded by planted flowers to turn the space into a container garden.
“These shrubs require little pruning, are one of the hardiest and most versatile container plants, making them perfect for balconies, even in the cooler regions.
Harryson says hosta plants come in several varieties, and most work well in containers both on their own and when spaciously nestled with other plants.
She said: “Hostas are best planted in early spring or fall so they have a chance to grow and establish themselves before their growth slows down in winter.
“Because hostas grow horizontally, we recommend using a pot with less than three inches of space between the roots and the side of the pot, for your balcony display.
“This will give the roots room to grow, while allowing the hosta leaves to fully spread out and display their foliage.
Harryson suggests these “little stunners” make the perfect addition to any balcony garden.
She said: “Their green stems and blue or white flowers add a beautiful balance of color and greenery to any outdoor space, large or small.
Although agapanthus do not thrive in winter, you can move their pots and cover them in cool seasons to protect them from the change of seasons. In spring and summer, they will produce flowers in June, July and August, especially when placed in a sunny location.
“Although agapanthus are drought tolerant, you will still need to water your pots at least twice a week during the summer and follow their fertilizing schedule to help them maintain their color and lush foliage.
It is also worth mentioning that agapanthus actually like to be root bound and do not like to be repotted in large or oversized pots.
Below are a few plants that provide privacy for those who want a secluded space.
Star jasmine is an evergreen vine that can be trained to grow in a specific space.
Harryson said: “These plants grow with even coverage and clusters of flowers that won’t drop in winter, making these plants the perfect addition to a balcony.
“Star jasmine can grow four to eight inches per year, which means these plants offer both privacy and minimal maintenance.
“Whether planted in the ground, in pots or planters, star jasmine will thrive with lots of sun and a little water.
Snake plants are described as “low maintenance and drought tolerant”, by Harryson, which means they are ranked second among Planta’s best plants of 2021.
She said: “While snake plants are often kept indoors, they can also thrive outdoors. They can also often retain their attractive appearance even after weeks of neglect and grow up to six feet tall. high, making them excellent dense privacy screens.
“Snake plants can thrive in both shady and sunny conditions, and come in a variety of colors (Star Green and Starlight are exceptionally striking), meaning you can find the look that best suits your space.
Areca palms, also known as butterfly or bamboo palms, are a perfect plant for beginners looking to flex their green thumbs.
Harryson said: “These plants love light and make the perfect addition to balconies in full sun. Areca palms reach up to 6.5 feet tall and can be almost as wide, although smaller versions of this plant are less bulky and can work as well as a divider, while allowing sunlight to filter through.
“Keep in mind that Areca palms don’t thrive in cold weather, and if you live somewhere with seasons, they will need to overwinter indoors.
“Plus, Areca palms are both non-toxic to pets and work overtime as air purifiers, so you can feel more confident bringing these beauties home.
Landscaping your balcony garden
Richard Searle, project manager at Kettler, thinks it’s worth considering “multifunctional furniture” when thinking of balcony garden ideas.
He said Newsweek“Modular furniture is extremely flexible as it can be prefigured to suit a wide range of spaces and occasions.
“The weatherproof storage boxes can be left outdoors throughout the seasons and are a fantastic solution for protecting outdoor cushions and accessories from the elements.
“Footrests can also provide additional seating for guests, additional storage space and can be used as a coffee table for drinks and snacks where there is no room for a larger dining table .
“It’s important to remember that there is no one size fits all when it comes to finding the perfect furniture and storage solution, but with a wide range of styles and materials now on the market, there is something for all tastes, all budgets and requirements.”