Balcony Gardens

If you live in a high rise in surging Gurgaon or Noida, even two floors above the ground are affected by wind. If your apartment is sea facing, then the wind problem may be compounded by salt. Wind damage can range from pots blowing over to torn battered leaves. If your pots and plants are exposed to the wind they can dry out quickly. So if you are planning to have a balcony garden you need to be realistic. Plants in heavy pots can resist wind. Glazed pots are prone to drying out quickly. Don’t go for ball on a stick style of topiary. This is an expensive option but won’t last long on your balcony. Also avoid large leafy plants as wind can tear into them and give them a tatty look. You can achieve a lush look by massing several plants together or erecting a trellis against a wall for a tough climber plants such a guinea flower.


Bottom line: provide regular water to counteract the drying wind.

East-facing balconies for example are sunny first thing but shaded for the rest of the day. South-facing balconies tend to be shaded all the time but are exposed to hot afternoon sun in mid-summer. West-facing balconies get sun at the end of the day and can be scorching hot, especially in summer.

The ideal aspect for a garden is a north or north-east facing balcony, which would be sun-drenched for most of the day. A wide-range of plants, including flowering annuals, herbs and vegetables, can be grown on these sunny balconies. And, the more sheltered from wind, the better the range you can grow.

For east and south-facing balconies, select shade-tolerant plants but provide shelter from hot sun by moving them away from the edge of the balcony or by using a screen. Camellias and hydrangeas thrive with these aspects.

If you’ve a west-facing balcony, go for tough, heat and sun-tolerant succulents or dwarf bougainvillea. Even if you can provide some sort of screening from the sun remember the area is likely to be very hot so plants need additional water on hot days and during summer.

Often balconies are shaded by the floor above. Even with the sunniest of aspects, balconies with deep overhanging roofs are best treated as shaded. Select plants that grow in shade or choose from the indoor plant section at the nursery.


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