A beautiful balcony represents far more than mere aesthetic pleasure; it becomes a place of spiritual respite, a little haven of greenery and bliss within the chaotic urban jungle.
If you’re staring at a freshly-acquired concrete slab and wondering what you can do with it, be sure to consider the following factors before you begin working on any beautification projects:
Check your building’s regulations. Many beautiful balcony designs showcase potted plants hanging from railings, for example, but not all buildings allow things to be attached to the building or railings; check to see what’s permitted before planning your garden arrangement. For more information on balcony design do’s and don’ts visit www.classicironworks.co.uk/wrought-iron-balcony/.
Investigate weight restrictions. Many people want to put a patio set or even a larger “working” vegetable garden on their balconies, but the weight of such setups adds up quickly. Be sure to know what the maximum weight your balcony can bear is, and use the lightest possible furniture and decorations.
Check for available water sources. When imagining a beautiful balcony, most of us immediately picture a verdant expanse of plant life. Lovely as this is to behold, it takes a lot of maintenance, especially in terms of water. If you don’t have an outdoor faucet or the ability to connect a small coil hose to one of your indoor taps, you might get stuck hauling buckets of water—are you willing to put in that kind of time and effort?
Check for adequate drainage. All that water has to be able to flow out properly as well, otherwise it will drip down onto your neighbours. If you’re planning to use a lot of water for your balcony garden, it is best if your balcony has a sloped floor and a proper drain, otherwise you may need to devise some complex workarounds.
Consider access routes. How do you access your balcony? Do you need to take an elevator, or stairs, somewhere en route? If so, make sure you don’t plan to use anything in your balcony beautification project that is too large to practically carry up to the balcony.
Assess growing conditions. Balconies can be shady places, and if high up, are exposed to harsher winds than ground-level gardens are. As such, you’ll want to choose plants that don’t require a great deal of sunlight which are fairly resilient and able to handle being knocked over now and then. You will also likely wish to create some manner of windbreak if wind is an issue on your balcony.
Think about storage. Gardening requires tools, bags of soil, spare containers, and much more. As you don’t have a shed, you’ll need to consider what you will need to store, where, and if the living area is large enough to accommodate it.
Design and aesthetics. Once you have all of the practical considerations out of the way, it’s time to decide on the kind of look and feel you want: A sunny, tropical-looking space or a shady, private one? Do you want to obscure some of the view, or embrace it? Likewise, don’t forget to maximise the use of vertical space; this will make your balcony feel much larger than it is.