Balcony Bliss: Get Gardening this Spring
Had enough of winter and snow? Dreaming of the beautiful new blooms that come with spring? If so, it’s time to put those daydreams into action and make a game plan for your apartment balcony or patio’s container garden!
Planting the seeds of research
There’s a lot of options, so let’s narrow down your strategy first!
- Are you going to plant the same flowers as last year?
- Are you considering a small vegetable and herb garden to use in the kitchen?
- Do you want to repel mosquitos and bugs so you can spend more time out on your balcony?
- Are you all about a colour scheme and willing to mix veggies and flowers?
Depending on your wants and needs, this might require a bit of digging (pun fully intended) to learn more and set yourself up for success.
Before you get too deep into planning, be sure to refer to page 20 in your downloadable Skyline Living Tenant Handbook to read about our balcony use policies. It’s always a good idea to talk with your Resident Manger before you get started, so that your unique building guidelines are followed and you create the best balcony environment that works for you.
If you’re a container-garden newbie, don’t fret – this Good Housekeeping article gives you a great overview of the seasonal hobby. You’ll learn which container sizes are appropriate, the types of required drainage, and the different materials that the containers come in!
Reading up on balcony gardening will save you some troubleshooting later in the season, and you’ll pick up tips like not overwatering out of respect for your neighbours who live below you! Other elements to consider are which direction your balcony faces and how much sun or shade you get – this will help determine what types of plants will thrive in your specific spot.
Edible container crops can also be beautiful
A lot of people find that working on a garden provides a real sense of accomplishment and pride. Now imagine being able to share the “fruits of your labour” in a meal with friends and family!
Gardening Channel notes that the eight best vegetables that you can grow in containers on your balcony are tomatoes, beans, peppers, radishes, carrots, peas, eggplant, or beets. So, you should really give growing your own veggies a chance this year!
You don’t need to choose between a practical edible garden over a beautiful flower bed either! Companion Planting involves pairing certain flowers with your veggie or herb crops, and it’s truly beneficial - they can attract good bugs while repelling pests. Plus, they can pretty up some otherwise kind of dull greenery. There’s also a whole list of edible flowers out there too – have you tried the popular lavender tea cookies?
Get everyone involved and share your sweet successes
Lastly, embrace gardening as a bonding and learning experience with your family or roommates. Family Education lists helpful gardening tips to keep in mind when working with kids or teens, like not aiming for perfection or considering using child-sized tools that they will be proud to call their own and feel more comfortable using.
Be sure to share photos of your successful Skyline Living gardening experiences on our social media! We would love to see what you are able to grow and how it adds a bit of happiness to your life this summer.