Terrace Garden Tips
By Editorial Staff
Contributed by Info Guru Terri Wallace
Not every garden needs to be a sprawling English affair with a privet maze and themed plantings.
Even a patio garden can provide plenty of produce and cut flowers with just a little time and effort. Here are some tips for creating a lush terrace garden.
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10. Make Use of Raised Beds
Take advantage of a larger terrace by creating a raised bed. Raised beds allow for a larger planting area than containers, and the larger area dries out more slowly than traditional containers—which means less time spent watering! Raised beds can be uniform in height, or staggered into a “waterfall” design. Use them for vegetables or flowers, or create a kitchen herb garden for delicious cooking.
Unless you relish the idea of hand watering each and every plant, it is wise to invest in a watering system to help with the chore. There are many watering options available, such as a drip hose, sprinklers, or misters. The size of your garden, the typical temperature and rain levels for your region, and the cost of these various options may help you determine which watering system works best for your garden.
Gardens aren’t just for daytime, the cooler summer evenings make a terrace garden even more inviting—and a little soft lighting to chase away the shadows will help create a lovely outdoor entertainment area. The lighting is also beneficial for those who prefer to tend the garden after the sun sets and the heat of the day has given way to slightly more bearable temperatures.
7. Veggie Wall
You do not have to have a large expanse of land to indulge your dreams of a vegetable garden. Consider a “veggie wall” as an alternative to the traditional vegetable patch. The veggie wall takes up less space and allows the plants to have better access to sun and air-circulation. The wall also provides a bit of privacy–in the event your neighbors can’t seem to stop enviously eyeing your plantings.
6. Consider What to Plant
Before you buy packets of sunflower and marigold seeds, consider where you intend to place your garden. How is the sunlight? Is it full sun or filtered? Does it get a full day’s sun on just a few hours? Make sure that the plants that you choose can tolerate the conditions you observe. For a shady garden, hostas and shamrock will perform better than more sun loving plants.
Container gardens are one solution for patios that are too small for a raised bed. Choose containers that provide adequate growing space for the desired planting. Larger containers also tend to dry out slower than smaller containers, allowing for more time between waterings. Consider companion planting within the container to provide continuous color and interest as the various plants peak and wane over their growing season.
Even small gardens will benefit from good compost. By implementing a small composter in your garden, you can ensure a steady supply of quality compost while reducing waste.
3. Deck Tiles
Even a splintered, old deck can take on new life with deck tiles. Deck tiles can help renovate a functional, but unattractive, deck without the expensive of replacing it. (As a plus, you can remove the tiles to use on a different area later on if you move or replace the deck entirely.
2. Water Feature
Small gardens often overlook a water feature, but those fortunate enough to have a spacious terrace might consider a water pond. A water feature can drown out noise, provide a cooling effect, and add tranquility to a garden.
1. Create Space for Comfort
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Even if your garden is more functional than frilly, you should still make room for some sitting space. After weeding and watering, you deserve the change to sit down and reward yourself with a glass of lemonade … and perhaps a few strawberries from your garden.
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