My first inspiration to “do-up” the balcony came right-after we visited a friend who had a lovely sit-out attached to the living room. Also inspiring were my neighbors, who are accomplished gardeners, and maintain a beautiful green space. Up until then, I had a few petunias and ornamental plants, randomly arranged from the nursery, and which were generally at my mercy for watering. The tiny balcony was also full of clothes and all things sundry. I decided that it was high-time to take action, and then started my “Operation Balcony Makeover”! It’s been a couple of years now – and I am no less inspired than I was then!
Here are some tips for a balcony make-over:
- Do not make your balcony a dump yard. Trash things that you do not use regularly – rags, cardboard boxes …. and anything else you can get rid of.
- Get an Instant pick-me-up: Get a good mix of flowering and green ornamental plants. The nursery is usually nice enough to let you know, if you are unsure about what to buy. A word of advice: Don’t buy anything very expensive – till you are sure that it would definitely grow in your space. If you are the I-must-grow-my-own-plants kind, then well, you will just have to wait till you go from seed to plant to flower – and plan the makeover well in advance!
- Get planters – plastic ones if you are on a budget, to hide the unsightly black pots from the nursery.
- Get creative with your arrangement – and keep making small changes, depending on the mood and the season!
- Some pretty and comfortable furniture helps if you intend to have a morning coffee, or an evening glass of wine on your balcony, or use it as a reading nook. Choose weather-resistant furniture if you have a completely exposed balcony.
- Maximize space utilization – if you have a small balcony, as is mine, use the walls for hanging pots and plants.
- Take care of your plants – nothing looks worse than neglected plants . Get some fertilizer/plant food as well for your flowers to bloom well.
- If you are lucky to have house-help, instruct them on the cleaning and watering, for the days you are not around, and chip in once a fortnight for a complete cleaning job. Keep your balcony spotless and clean – and see how your little green space uplifts your day!
Here are some pictures of my balcony after the make-over: