If you live in the city or an apartment nearby, or even in a smaller house, you may not have a place to garden. The good news is that you can still grow nearly everything you’d want in just a few square feet – really whatever you have at your disposal!
There are a few things to keep in mind if you’re thinking of balcony gardening. Let’s take a look at some of the best plants for an apartment balcony, and how to grow them.
So, What Can I Grow on my Balcony?
Anything! No, really, you can grow most anything – it just depends on how much space you want to give over to flora. Let’s assume, though, that you only have space for (or space you want to devote to) just a few pots.
Special Considerations for Gardening on a Balcony
- What herbs and vegetables do you use the most? When planting in a small space, it’s best to prioritize. Do you cook often? Herbs and spices are probably best and many of them look pleasant as well. Don’t cook? No worries – flowers and plants like lavender grow wonderfully in smaller spaces and smell lovely.
- Do you need some coverage from the neighbors? Look, we love our neighbors, but sometimes you just want to sit on your balcony without having to have a conversation, right? Hedges can easily be grown on a balcony! Plus, evergreens never turn brown, so you’ve got a great looking row all year round.
- Don’t forget the weight. Most modern buildings can handle quite a bit of weight, but do consider the sheer poundage of what you’re putting on your balcony. If you’re considering plants that require rocky soils and sand, you may want to consider inquiring with your property manager.
- Water? Yes, plants need water. Don’t forget you have to get H2O to them somehow! Whether that means a hose or pots and cups filled with the stuff, keep in mind you’ll have to do it.
How to Start a Balcony Garden
Lay out your garden beforehand. Where will you put the containers? Do you have the square footage required? Then, make sure you make a shopping list. Plastic containers work fine – be sure that you have enough planting space for each sprout. Each one generally requires a different distance from the plants around it. Also, be sure to use a high-quality planting soil – since your plants will only have that soil to draw from, they’ll really need some good compost or fertilizer to stay healthy.
Once you’ve got your containers picked out and filled with dirt, you can pick your plants! There are a few plants that we just love on balconies.
- Herbs and spices – they’re easy to start and nearly impossible to kill. Plus, many of them are weeds so they sprout quickly and can regenerate leaves for your use any time.
- Basil, parsley, and oregano
- Mint (smells great and you can eat it right off the plant!)
- Arugula, mesclun and other lettuces (very easy to grow and tasty too!)
- Flowers – They look great, smell great and make your balcony attractive from the street.
- Tulips and other “spring flowers”
- Wildflowers (they’re weeds and grow like them!)
- Holly and violets
- Hysoep, anemome and Vijeon all attract pollinators which is great for the environment!
- Vegetables – Again, ensure you have enough space, but you can grow quite a few right in pots:
- Hot peppers
- Cucumbers and squash (as long as the containers are deep enough)
- Tomatoes (ensure that you cage them up)
- Radishes, beans and peas (they essentially grow themselves!)
- Fruit – This is a tough one. You may be able to get away with some berries, but most fruit will be beyond your reach.
- Climbers – Check with your property management to ensure its allowed, but climbers attached to your railings and walls can be gorgeous, especially when they flower!
As long as you plan ahead, your balcony garden can look better than someone with acreage to spare!