Gardening can often be likened to a fitness routine. Till you don’t have a fitness routine, you don’t miss it. But when you do, even missing it a single day is not on! Similarly, till you don’t have a garden, you don’t really care, but grow just any plant and watch how you eagerly wait for a new leaf to grow and wait patiently for that little bud to sprout colourful petals. Then the addiction grows – from one pot to another - till your garden is one pretty retreat of myriad hues. And yes, no matter what the size of your home is, there’s always place for plants - in kitchen windows, balconies, ledges, at your home entrance and yes, even indoors!
However, this piece is for those who live in apartments or/and those who have balconies. We’ll tell about 5 ways to transform your balcony - from an empty, dull and drab place to a beautiful space that breathes life…literally!
Pick a spot: Choose a balcony that gets adequate light but yet is not too sunny, so you can grow a variety of plants. Light and shade should complement each other so your plants benefit the most.
Start Small: This way you won’t get your hopes too high. Like all activities gardening too might see you working enthusiastically at first and then your pace slackens over time. So, if you have just a few evergreen plants that just need watering and sunshine and can survive despite you slackening, at least your gardening venture will survive! If not anything, guilt will make you work towards working on developing that green thumb - all over again!
Choose the plants: Your local nursery will generally have all the plants that grow perfectly well in your climate, so you really do not have to look further. However, a mix of annuals and perennials will ensure that your garden is blooming at all times of the year. If you are an organic person then mixing herbs and veggies with your flowering plants and crotons and cactii may also work fine. With some bio-enzymes which you can buy online, ensuring that your plants live healthily too is taken care of rather easily too.
Pots and planters: While plastic pots are in vogue, do try out these eco-friendly pots made of coconut husks. Their water retention capacity is good, so you don’t have to water plants ever so often and also their porosity makes it easier for roots to breathe. These and terracotta po ts are our favourites, but you can go ahead for easy maintenance plastic pots too.
Design your space: Bring out the designer in you and give your balcony your personal touch. So whether you make it multi-levelled and layered adding some gardening accessories or you hanging pots from the balcony rails, design the space in such a way that all plants get your equal attention. The good part about designing your balcony? The plants do half the work with their riot of colours and their natural beauty. You can add colour with multi-coloured pots and some garden decor. So what are you waiting for? Go ahead, grow a plant, go green and add make your balcony your perfect little retreat.