8 Things to Consider Before Starting a Garden Balcony

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A garden balcony can be a great idea. With the right setup, something like this can provide a lot of fresh herbs, flowers or vegetables, as well as creating a nice space to spend time in. But there are a few things most gardeners will want to look at for utilizing a balcony space on their property, whether it’s rented or owned.

1. Light

The amount of sunlight you get depends on the exposure from your balcony in its location relative to the rest of the building. Overhead trees can also limit light. Look critically at the balcony to see if it gets enough light to allow plants to thrive.

2. Structural Integrity

You also may want to look at how much weight a balcony can hold before putting a lot of planters, gardening containers and other gear onto it for a garden setup. It might seem like a detail, but weighing down a balcony structure can be extremely unsafe, and just the dirt used to fill planters can weight a lot.

3. Wind

Think about how you will deal with excessive wind on your balcony space to prevent damage to plants. Also consider inclement weather and winter conditions. You may need to provide tarp cover for plants to shield them from harsh weather conditions.

4. Space

Your balcony is only large enough to support a specific amount of plants. Try to do accurate blueprints for a garden space before ordering to make sure you don’t overbuy for the space you have.

5. Hanging Beds

A hanging bed is a great way to add space to a garden. Look for support for hanging baskets if your space isn’t enough for what you want to plant. Make sure to measure for tiered systems including hanging pots.

6. Restrictions

No matter where you live, local law may be a limiting factor to your garden space. Some local laws are pretty vague, but be sure to look into the local zoning laws if applicable to see what standards are set by the local government about having plants in an outdoor balcony space, especially if it faces a public area. If you are renting, you will also want to check out your lease to make sure there are no restrictions on gardening.

7. Topsoil

If you are importing raised beds or pots into your balcony space, think about what you will fill them with. Soil choices are a big part of helping plants thrive.

8. Water

You will need to think about whether you will cover the plants and hand water them, leave them to soak up rainwater, or practice a combination of these two strategies for getting the right amount of water to plants.

All of the above are critical things to think about when you are gearing up for making a home balcony space into a productive, enjoyable garden. Making a checklist for these gardening issues can give you a much better vantage point for carrying out all of the work that needs to be done.

One Response to “8 Things to Consider Before Starting a Garden Balcony”

  1. October 28, 2009 at 7:52 am, Nancy @PlantAvenue said:

    Great list. The weight consideration would have been first on my mind (I worry about stuff like that), but I wouldn’t have even thought about the wind. Thanks!

    Reply

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