There Are Many Ways to Garden Your Plantings….
“Quick and easy to read gardening post!”
Part 6 …
E21 – W12
Growing on the Balcony
We have already discussed the fact that not everyone has access to a traditional or conventional back or front garden, they may not have an allotment, or a greenhouse, conservatory, potagers or ornamental beds. However l have covered in this series the likes of windowsill growing and container growing and these fall in line with the likes of the balcony growers.
City dwellers living in apartment blocks, flats, condominiums [condos], high rises anyway, you get the jist, usually have access to balconies of some sorts, whether these be individual or even community access balconies or roof top garden spaces … somewhere however large or small it may be that you might be able to sit out on or have a few pots, containers and climbers to grow in and on. I see in our future that more of these living environments will be the new space age residences and not just like they are today.
However, balcony’s vary in size – l have been on some that measure 8 feet x 4 feet and others that are smaller – reflectively then what can a grower realistically hope to achieve vegetable/fruit or herb wise? What considerations need to be taken into account?
Tomatoes are great balcony companions
One of the important aspects of balcony growing is that up high the vegetations will be subjected to a different style of weather elementals – breezes and windy gales – dry, cold and wet are to be taken into account in not just what you might use as a container but also will determine what you might be able to grow with success.
The beauty of gardening today is that with diversity of selections of seeds and containments you can grow something and produce some bounty for your home should you wish to. Most vegetables will – reflective conditions be able to be grown successfully on balconies – first however – some research on your containers will be your first port of call.
The black pots are the new styled environmental biodegradable fabric pots.
Check out the Guide Link below.
Terracotta pots will dry out too quickly due to the nature of the wind and can be cumbersome and clumsy due to their weight, so look at either biodegradable fabric varieties or indeed plastic. [Not all plastic is bad]. Ensure whatever you use has great drainage. Using a coarser gravel at the bottom of the pots will aid your drainage too. A good container soil will also help and aid vegetable growth – the link above will help.
One of the biggest issues with balcony gardening is that they are sometimes forgotten about and that the reliance upon the weathers to water them is a thought oft taken for granted. Establishing a dedicated daily watering routine is imperative for your balcony residents and their survival. Either water first thing in the morning or later on in the day – reflective also is when the sun is upon them – so do not water when they are in full sun. If your balcony has no roof, then no watering is necessary on rainy days. Using a mulch will also help the plants and containers to retain their moistures for longer.
For colder climes, bring the lesser hardier plants in of an evening. The secret to successful balcony gardening is regular watering, retaining moisture and ample sun and when the colder weather is upon you keeping them protected against the harsher elements.
Balcony gardening is no different to backyard farming – it just requires understanding of containers to be used, watering and soil type growing mediums. Seedlings can be grown on first inside your home.
Ideal plants – vegetables, herbs and fruits could easily include ….
Tomatoes, Aubergine, Peppers and chillies, Spring Onions, Climbing bean varieties, radishes, kale, chards [think of the miniature vegetable varieties as well], cucamelons and wild strawberries. Also certain herbs will do very well in the balcony such as chives, mints, parsley, but for more information – check out this link …. How to Make a Balcony Herb Garden | Complete Tutorial.
Companion flower plantings will also help with pest control as well as providing additional edibles … marigolds, nasturtiums are two examples l use a lot here, but for a more comprehensive guide – check out … The joy of edible flowers.
Check out the videos below for more ideas and inspiration.
So there we go folks – l think most growing areas have now been covered with the series …. however in tomorrow’s episode l will write about a fabulous idea that Ruth of Don’t Eat It Soap raised – which was “Sprouting” – something that Suze and l have done in the past and something we will be restarting this season. Excellent idea Ruth.
I hope you enjoyed the mini series – l will catch you all in our next episode – thanks for reading.