I recently embarked on yet another new adventure, balcony planting! For some reason, unlike most large city dwellers, Berliners, (and Germans in general,) love to plant on their balconies! You will never see a balcony without floral adornments or green of some kind, and this is the perfect time of year to begin. I make an attempt last year, but have to admit I failed quite miserably within a short period of time, (probably about the same time I put ten plants in a window box made for 4!) They looked gorgeous for a week and then all sadly withered and died.
This year I thought I’d give my not-so-green-thumb another try. Given my limited knowledge on the topic, I had to do plenty of research before heading to the plant shop. First, was my balcony sunny, partially sunny, windy? Second, how big is it exactly and what kind of planters can it hold? Third, what are my favorite color flowers and which will last the longest? This doesn’t even account for the simple, “how the hell do I plant these things?” questions that quickly followed.
I started in two separate trips to the shop, (my plants for a car share fell through so I was forced to take taxis each time!) On day 1 I picked up the planters, which took about 1.5 hours as I stood dumbfounded in front of hundreds of different options trying to decide what to pick. After speaking with a very patient sales associate in my limited German, I finally decided on three 100cm boxes, two 30cm round over the railing planters, and one additional 60cm box for the angled corner of the balcony. It was a good choice, but to be honest I may go back for two more 100cm boxes since I still have the space and it should be filled up! Plus, I love the extra privacy on the balcony from the planters.
Day 2 was all about the plants. I’d be lying if I said it took any less than 2-3 hours to pick everything out! But finally I chose plenty of geraniums and petunias in all different purples and pinks, and put some lovely lavender on the side and some gorgeous plants that won’t flower until June.
I made my way back home and went about setting up the metal brackets (to hold the plants in place on the balcony). This took much more time than I anticipated, so I was only actually able to plant the ready to hang boxes on that first day, but after a full day at the lake on Sunday, I came home and finished up the three large planters – filling them with purples and pinks to my heart’s content! It was already evening by the time I finished, (so the lighting in this shot isn’t great,) but here is a first taste of my balcony gardening expertise!
I promise there will be many more shots to come as the flowers come into bloom and sunny days fill my balcony over the summer!