The Balcony Garden

The Balcony Garden

One of the great things about gardening is how flexible the nature of your garden can be. You do not need a large yard; in fact you do not need a yard at all.

If you have a balcony, there is an opportunity to design a garden that is just right for that space.

If you want to create a balcony garden then there are a few things you need to do.

First and possibly the most important step is to ask yourself, how much time do you have to spend taking care of the garden? Balcony gardens usually take the form of plants in containers and may actually require more attention than a backyard garden does.

Balconies can be hot, dry and windy spots and this means that your plants will need to be watered frequently. You will also need to check on them regularly to determine if watering or other attention is required. Pests and diseases can affect the balcony garden.

The second determination you will need to make is how much sunlight the balcony receives. This, in part, determines what you can grow. If your balcony is heavily shaded then most vegetables are out but shade plants are in.

This is where the right plant, right place (RPRP) guideline comes in handy. You place a plant in the location where its needs are met and that plant will flourish, if something is lacking, water, soil, food, then the plant may die or languish. So select your plants with knowledge and care.

Now that you know the light conditions, you can decide how much space you want to allow for the garden. You will need room to move around to care for and harvest. What else do you use your balcony for?

The last question is are you growing herbs, vegetables, fruit, yes you can grow dwarf apple trees on a balcony, if the conditions are right, or ornamentals.

Once you have answered all the questions you can draft your garden plan. This does not need to be elaborate, a pencil sketch on a piece of paper will do. Simply indicate where the plants will go and be sure to include anything else that may be on yoru balcony, chairs, for example.

The plan is not craved in stone and you can make adjustments as you go; it is designed to keep yoru focused and not to get carried away.

It is easy enough to buy more plants than you can use, if the budget permits, when you visit a garden centre.

It can be difficult to resist some of the floral beauties that are teasing you into taking them home.

Use you garden plan to develop a plant list and do your best to stick to the list. It can be helpful to talk with the garden centre manger or a horticultural expert and explain your plan, before buying.

Balcony gardening is as rewarding as any other form of gardening as long as you follow the few simple steps that I have outlined. Most importantly, have fun gardening is a joy not a chore.

balcony garden

Getting Ready, Bob Ewing photo
Getting Ready, Bob Ewing photo
A Few Weeks later, Bob Ewing photo
A Few Weeks later, Bob Ewing photo

herbs in containers

balcony garden

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Comments 18 comments

Debra Myers 7 years ago

I've done container gardening before and it's a fun way to grow your veggies!

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

I agree, more and more of my gardening is done in containers, thanks for stopping b.

funride profile image

funride 7 years ago from Portugal

Another great hub from Bob as usual ;)

I had some problems with container gardening and so I gave up. Unfortunately I don´t have balcony (I tend to fall from them lol) and so people kept stealing my plants and containers :(

It´s a great choice though ;)

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Thanks, use big containers about 2-3 feet across, too heavy to readily steal. :)

funride profile image

funride 7 years ago from Portugal

LOL, indeed that must be the best solution. But I think I still should bury the containers so that people won`t see them... ohh wait, this way I don´t even need the containers after all :D

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

You could partially bury them, or put some rocks in the bottom make them heavy. :)

Zsuzsy Bee profile image

Zsuzsy Bee 7 years ago from Ontario/Canada

Great hub again Bob. I always have a few planters with tomatoes on the edge of the deck. Just to be able to quickly grab a tomatoe to go with a sandwich or burger. Just to save the time from having to change shoes and stomp through to the garden especially when its raining.

Hope you're well kindest regards Zsuzsy

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

"Just to save the time from having to change shoes and stomp" one of the best reasons. Thanks for stopping by.

Webofusion profile image

Webofusion 7 years ago

Hey Bob,

Thanks a lot for your advice. Since I was out of town, I couldn't reply you earlier. This is an awesome post. I would love to have a garden, but unfortunately I am not a very active gardener. All I can manage to do is watering the plants. But I am sure I will start taking extra care. As you told it's not a chore, it's a joy.

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Thanks for stopping by.

Dim Flaxenwick profile image

Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

That mini video about planting herbs was exactly what I've been looking for. Thanks for all the tips.

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Good, thanks for dropping by.

wavegirl22 profile image

wavegirl22 7 years ago from New York, NY

I couldnt live without my herbs . .and I loved this Hub. Gardening is such a joy. . I couldnt agree with you more!

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Thanks for dropping by.

glassvisage profile image

glassvisage 5 years ago from Northern California

This is very encouraging... The photos and video are very helpful. Thanks for sharing this!

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 5 years ago from New Brunswick Author

You are welcome,thanks for dropping by.

Mallak 2 years ago

OMG. What a bunch of babbling BS.First off, the US has prveon that natgas DOES lower the CO2 output when replacing coal. Secondly, we've got all these studies and reports coming in from all over demonstrating that fracking has NOTHING to do with methane in the drinking water and that surface contamination from these wells is no greater than from tradtitional wells (i.e., not much).Just another desperate move by the dirt worshippers to keep humanity from progressing.

John 2 years ago

The cost to use natural gas will “necessarily” skekycrot when we go strictly natural gas as the US does not have the gas pipelines to carry the gas to the power plants. The gas pipelines that exist are at maximum capacity already. Add to that cost the cost of fighting the environmental warriors over fracking and you no longer have an inexpensive energy choice.

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