Turn Your Condo Balcony Into A Gorgeous Garden With These Tips
Monday Aug 24th, 2020
Condo balconies are often left in the dark, while a few residents throw in a few pieces of furniture to turn them into usable spaces. But only a few think about making a small balcony garden. In a bustling city like Toronto, a mini private garden within your own unit is a breath of fresh air and a nice escape from the hustle to delve in the beauty of nature. Start your own at-home balcony garden with these expert tips!
Checking The Condo’s Rules
First things first, it is really beneficial to check the rules of the condo building before you decide to create a balcony garden. You don’t want to meticulously create a beautiful garden only to have to tear it down later. If you have rented out a condo, check out the condo agreement and if it doesn’t include permissions for creating a garden, talk to the condo board, superintendent, or your landlord. Certain condos in Toronto are not very favorable to greenery hanging over balcony edges or vines growing up walls. Not to mention, there may be restrictions on the weight, size, or type of the plants that you are allowed to grow. On the other hand, most small buildings do not have much stringent rules regarding balcony gardening, which gives you more room to deck out your balcony garden according to your whims. You just need to make sure that these plants do not encroach others’ property.
Choose Plants According To Toronto’s Climate
The plants that you want to grow on your condo’s balcony require good soil, water, and sun. This works directly with the climate zone. Keep in mind that condo balconies of Toronto don’t get much sun exposure, so shade loving plants like Swedish Ivy, Primroses, Ferns, and Begonias will work better for your balcony. But on the other hand, if you are one of those lucky residents who get ample sunlight, why not go for Ivy Geranium, Petunias, Daylilies, Catmint, and other plants that thrive in the sun. Wind is another factor, so the higher up your unit is and the stronger winds your balcony is exposed to, the more resilient plants you need. If you have a particularly windy balcony, try using heavier containers to keep your plants from getting knocked over or getting blown away completely.
Set A Color Scheme
Break the monotony and play around with colors by growing bright flowers on your balcony. However, unless you are looking for crazy, stick to two or three colors. Choose your color palette carefully depending on the look that you want to create. You can always use analogous or complementary colors if you are unsure. Some combinations can really add a pop of color to your balcony such as light blue and purple, red and yellow, or pink, white and purple. Finalizing your color scheme simplifies the process of choosing what flowers you would like to plant and helps you select other outdoor accessories and decorative items! A bonus tip is to use two different plants in one container to create a more interesting space, for instance by combining a high sprouting vine or flower with a low coverage plant.
Grow More Edibles
While you are at it, why not grow your own vegetables, herbs, and fruits in your garden. This is healthier and more cost-efficient as compared to buying from supermarkets. If you have always thought that growing an edible garden needs a huge backyard, you would be surprised to learn how you can grow one on your condo balcony garden. Some edibles that grow well in containers include beets, cherry tomatoes, lettuce, and aromatic herbs like thyme, rosemary, mint, and coriander. You can use a ladder-style shelf system and railing planters to stack herbs and flowers to make smart use of space, rather than spread them across your balcony floor. Next time you need to spruce up your dinner, head out into your balcony, and pick your vegetables.
Make A Zen Garden
Why create a run-of-the-mill condo balcony garden, when you can spice it up with water features and turn it into a Zen garden! If your balcony has electrical connections, you can easily power your water pump and the water feature will really complement the greens. For a real Zen-like look, try incorporating rock and stone planters, in addition to bamboo and bushes. However, be careful not to break the size or weight restriction if your condo building has any.
Trees And Balcony Gratings Look Great Together
These two can add greenery to any balcony’s space, no matter how small it is. In fact, I say that condo balcony gardens feel barren, empty, and low if neither are present. Not to mention, dense plantations can really protect the sensitive plants from strong winds. Balcony gratings are not allowed in all building, so you will have to check with your condo association first. Even if they are allowed, you would do better to fasten them to balcony railings with ropes or zip ties, instead of twine.