Recently, the concept of "unity with nature" has become very popular in the design of interiors of city apartments. This is not only the use of natural finishing materials and color solutions in natural colors, but also the arrangement of summer and winter gardens in bay windows, on balconies and loggias. In such green areas you can place not only flowerpots and tubs with exotic plants, but also a recreation corner and even a workplace.
The first stage of arrangement of the garden on the balcony or loggia
Before you make a winter garden on the balcony, you need to decide on such questions:
- Will the green corner function year-round or only in summer?
- the number and size of vases;
- species composition of plants.
Deliveries for flowers can also be made individually (independently or on order), taking into account the size and configuration of the room. For example, stepped floor stand, wall shelves, window sills of non-standard width, pots, etc.
The number and size of plants is an important criterion when arranging a garden in a small space. Flowerpots with flowers should not overload the room. They need to be placed so that each plant has free access for watering. Large flowers in heavy tubs should be placed on special mobile stands on roller supports. Then they can be easily moved when cleaning the room.
In order for the winter garden to please the eye with lush greenery and bright blooms all year round, you need to pay attention to the selection of plant species. When choosing, you need to consider:
- room dimensions;
- orientation of the balcony (loggia) in relation to the cardinal points;
- family lifestyle;
- The cost of heating and garden lighting in the winter.
Observing a few simple principles, you can without any hassle to arrange a beautiful garden on the balcony. Ideas for the selection and placement of plants open up a wide scope for creating original garden compositions.
How to choose plants for the garden on the balcony?
For small spaces, compact, slow-growing ornamental plants are optimal. These are room violets (Saintpaulia), azalea (Azalea), miniature citrus varieties, some types of orchids, etc. On large balconies or loggias, such plants as monstera (Monstera), dracaena (Dracaena), zamiokulkas (Zamioculcas), cissus will look good. diamond-shaped (Cissus rhombifolia), some members of the palm family (Palmaceae) and others.
Illumination is one of the main factors that is taken into account when choosing the species composition of plants. The lack of (and in some cases, an excess) of sunlight can lead to slower growth, cessation of flowering, yellowing of the leaves.
Balconies that go to the south-east or south-west, suitable for almost all indoor plants. On the southern side, cacti and succulents, palm trees, representatives of the euphorbia family (Euphorbiaceae), bokarneya (Beaucarnea), and adenium (Adenium) will grow beautifully. For the northern balconies suitable ferns, representatives of the genus Chlorophytum (Chlorophytum), aspidistra (Aspidistra), ivy (Hedera), hibiscus (Hibiscus), begonia (Begonia), some ficus.
Not everyone is willing to spend a lot of time caring for indoor plants. And in cases where the family’s lifestyle is associated with frequent travels, daily care of the home garden is simply not possible. But if you want to create a winter garden on the loggias, you need to pay attention to the species that are undemanding to irrigation, soil quality and transplants. These are cacti and succulents that can stand up to one month without water. By the way, in some species of cacti a prolonged lack of moisture stimulates flowering. Phalaenopsis orchids (Phalaenopsis) are not too demanding for watering. It is enough to water them once a week. Undemanding plants also include dracaena (Dracaena), sansevieriya (Sansevieria), spathiphyllum (Spathiphyllum), ivy (Hedera).
In winter, the cost of heating and garden lighting on the balcony will be a significant amount in the family budget. But these costs can be reduced if you choose the right composition of plants.
Many representatives of the subtropical flora need a period of rest with a low temperature. For lemon (Cítrus límon), Chinese rose (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis), ivy (Hedera), abutilon (Abutilon), oleander (Nerium oleander), fuchsia (Fuchsia), myrtle (Myrtus) in winter there will be enough temperature around +10 degrees They also do not need additional lighting.
The summer garden on the balcony can be arranged using flowering garden annuals. Verbena (Verbena), marigolds (Tagetes), petunia (Petunia), and snapdragons (Antirrhínum) will grow beautifully in pots and containers. These plants have a long flowering period: from June to the most frost. They are undemanding in care, easily tolerate high temperatures, direct sunlight, lack of moisture. All these flowers can be grown independently from seed through seedlings (sowed in March-April) or purchased already grown plants in specialized stores.
You can even find a place for plants on the smallest balcony. In this case, it is not necessary to fill all possible space with the pot. In order to create a beautiful mini garden on the balcony, just place a few pots or boxes of flowers.
On narrow balconies or loggias it is recommended to arrange so-called vertical gardens. They are based on wooden or metal wall constructions to which boxes or vases are attached. For the vertical garden pick compact types and varieties of ornamental plants.
These are many types of succulents, cacti, some varieties of adiantum (Adiantum) and peperomia (Peperomia), gloxinia (Gloxinia), room violet (Saintpaulia) and others. On the vertical structures of the open balcony in a warm period of time, you can grow dwarf varieties of marigolds, snapdragons, cloves (Dianthus).
In the vertical garden you can grow not only ornamental, but also salad and spicy-flavoring plants. Lettuce, parsley, miniature varieties of basil, thyme, savory grow well on the balcony, providing their owners with delicious aromatic herbs for the whole summer. A spectacular completion of the home garden composition will be a pair of flowerpots with decorative cabbage. They can be placed on high stands near the wall. Rosettes of leaves of decorative cabbage in white, pink or purple colors (depending on the variety) are similar to large exotic flowers.
Another idea for planting a small balcony is miniature plant compositions in ceramic pots or glass containers. To create a composition, select species that are similar in terms of the requirements for habitat conditions (soil composition, irrigation, illumination). Get along well with each other:
- cacti and succulents;
- anthurium, arrowroot, calathea;
- sethreasia and tradescantia;
- ferns and spathiphyllum.
Another option is possible. Several different colors in separate pots will be placed in one large ceramic pot. In this case, you can take plants with different requirements for irrigation. In the warm season, miniature compositions are placed on the balcony on stands, and with the onset of cold weather they are brought into the room.
What you need to care for the garden on the balcony?
Creating a garden on the balcony with your own hands is not at all difficult, but to take care of it, it is desirable to acquire at least a minimal set of equipment and tools. In winter, many tropical plants need additional lighting. For them, install special lamps, the spectrum of which is close to daylight. Such lighting devices can also be used for spring-growing seedlings. They prevent the stretching of the stems and stimulate the development of the root system of young plants.
To water the garden on the balcony, you will need tanks for settling tap water, as well as a watering can with a thin long spout. Many indoor plants for normal development need frequent spraying. For this you should buy a special spray for flowers. Unlike household sprayers, it produces very small droplets of spray that evenly cover the leaves of plants. To transplant flowers you need to get a small garden spatula.