Ornamental plants and small urban gardens
Growing plants and flowers on the balconies of houses and apartments is an established and widespread habit. To this more recently it has also been flanked by that of cutting out a further space to be dedicated to the production of vegetables and seedlings such as basil, parsley and mint. The urban garden is in fact more and more fashionable in big cities and can be a great way to make the balcony productive and save on food spending. If the intention is to create a small kitchen garden next to ornamental plants, it is important to know how to make the most of the spaces. Technology and some good practices in this field can be useful on several fronts: from the choice of vessels to that of the most suitable plants to be cultivated in an exposed environment of limited size. What is certain is that cultivating, irrigating and treating the terrace daily can be a real antidepressant remedy, an antidote to the strain of modern life, especially for those who live in the chaos of the city and need to carve out a space all for themselves in which to regain contact with nature and regenerate, perhaps sharing this hobby with family members.
Equipment and soil preparation
To prepare our terrace to accommodate plants and vegetables, first of all we verify its ability to accommodate pots and plants bearing in mind that, thanks to the technology of modern gardening objects, it is possible to exploit the walls and the walls or create new walls through the flooring and railings. ad hoc placement of gratings, vertical pots and special kits for growing in small spaces. We then check that the balcony is sufficiently exposed to the sun, which is essential for plant growth.
Whatever type of cultivation we want to dedicate to, there are some gardening tools we should have: a hoe, a rake, the watering can, gloves and pruning shears. All strictly in the mini version but of unquestionable utility.
The quality of the land in which we are going to plant seeds and bulbs is very important and therefore the way in which we prepare it. The preparation of the soil can be done by mixing garden soil, which can be purchased in sacks in specialized shops, with a layer of sand that favors drainage and a layer of gravel at the bottom of the container. The ideal soil must have a good organic content, be well exposed to light and of medium texture, that is, not too clayey, nor too sandy. Among gardening products it may be advisable to also keep a package of liquid fertilizer to be used if necessary. The plants must then be regularly watered or in any case based on specific needs. Pruning is also very important and should be done with technique and rationality in the right periods for each plant species. Scissors and pruning saws must be very sharp to avoid causing damage to the plants that can cause infections and wastes. They should not be reused if a sick plant has been pruned before to avoid contagion on healthy plants.
Pots for plants and vegetables, grills and balcony greenhouses
Establishing how much of the balcony to allocate to the plants is important for deciding which and how many to grow. In fact, each of them will need space for the growth of their roots and the development of their production. Even three or four pots of ornamental plants, placed at the right distance, may be sufficient to embellish a railing. Better to choose resistant plants, able to withstand smog and temperature changes like geraniums. Gratings are also very useful on the balcony, panels made of strips of wood that cross to form a grid for the development of climbing plants, allowing the terrace to be kept tidier and cleaner. The gratings that are already combined with the flower boxes are very suitable. In the same way cultivating three of the most used vegetables, such as tomatoes, lettuce and courgettes, on the balcony can lead to some savings in food expenditure associated with the advantage of consuming genuine products. Pots and kits suitable for growing vegetables on the balcony are quite cheap as is the cost of seed packets to be implanted. The most used are the bags in recycled fabric or in geotextile that can also be hung vertically to make better use of the spaces. Light and resistant to UV rays, they allow excellent circulation of air and water inside them and can be very roomy.
Grow on the balcony: Modern solutions for growing on the terrace
The most innovative models are equipped with a reservoir for irrigation or a mat in TNT and expanded clay to cover the seeds and favor the plant. Of various shapes and sizes they can be divided into various compartments in such a way that even one bag can be destined to more plants. Some of these kits are real works of art. Studied and designed by internationally renowned architects and designers, they are born with the aim of making gardening or the metropolitan vegetable garden as easy as possible with space-saving solutions and the use of innovative techniques. Finally, even the mini greenhouses are very useful. They open from the top and are very resistant. The transparent ones allow you to observe the plants at any time to monitor their growth.