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If you don't have a garden, you don't have to do without plants and magnificently blooming flowers. There is an extensive selection of balcony plants available that leaves nothing to be desired. You can always set new accents with seasonal plants or plant your flower box continuously with hardy and evergreen perennial specimens. If you don't have any ideas for your planting yet, you can get tips and valuable advice from Plantopedia here.
Balconies usually do not offer the space to plant balcony boxes in such a way that you can create a blooming paradise from early spring to late autumn. Here a change of balcony plants is usually necessary. If, for example, the perennial lilies of the valley and tulips have withered, you would theoretically have to plant them out to make room for early summer flowers.
But that doesn't have to be the case if you have so-called exchange boxes. Plant them with balcony plants that thrive/bloom at the same time of year or around the same period. If this changes, also change the flower boxes with the plants for the next vegetation period. This saves you a lot of time on planting and planting and a lot of money because you can keep old plants for next year.Flower box with soil
Spring balcony planting
The flower box for the early spring season should be planted from around March/April.
Examples of early bloomers include:
- lily of the valley
- different grasses
If you want to grow early bloomers from onions, they can be planted in the flower box in winter.
The most popular varieties include:
Of course, you can also combine the flower bulbs in early spring with early bloomers from the shops.
Summer balcony planting
The summer planting for a change box should be stocked with specimens that have a long flowering period. It is important for summer planting that you pay attention to the optimal location. In spring the sun is not yet hot and the plants usually get along well with both bright and shady spots. Things are different in summer. Which balcony plants are better on a south-facing balcony and which ones prefer a west-facing balcony will be described later in detail below.
There is a huge selection of flowering and green plants to choose from for summer planting. Combinations of hanging and upright balcony plants, such as hanging geraniums and daisies, are very decorative. When planting yourself, you should note that the plant combinations have approximately the same nutrient requirements. Flowering plants in particular can tolerate neither a lack of nutrients nor an overdose.
Autumn Balcony Plants
In order to bring color to the balcony all year round, appropriate balcony plants should not be missing in autumn. Green plants that bear colored fruit in autumn are recommended. There are also late bloomers, such as dwarf mistletoe and autumn asters.
You should plant the autumn flower box at the beginning of September, when the perennial summer flowers are slowly preparing for hibernation, stop growing and you need to change the box for a more decorative look.
Possible balcony plants for autumn can be found in the following bloomers:
- Shinberry (red fruit)
Winter flower box
Many leave out planting in winter and combine the flower box with hardy balcony plants in autumn. You don't have to do without color in your balcony plants. Heather, for example, is a very popular specimen that you can plant in your flower box all year round.
The following plants bring color to the dark winter days:
- Heather - broom heather (Calluna) in particular, because it gives colour
- peat myrtle
- Stonecrop (Sedum)
- hardy purple bells (Heuchera) - its leaves turn from brownish amber to dark red in autumn
Box trees and conifers are also very decorative in winter, with a topiary, for example, as a standard or spherical shape. However, the topiary should be done before the onset of winter to prevent frostbite.
TIP: In the garden trade you can buy ready-made change boxes for every season and for year-round planting.
Year-round flower box
Plant flower boxes for the whole year
If changing the balcony plants and/or the change boxes is too cumbersome for you, you can also plant them all year round, which remain all year round. This saves you the trouble and you can still benefit from lush greenery and lush flowering plants.
Small shrubs that grow slowly are particularly popular. This includes, for example, the dwarf conifer. Dwarf conifers such as the false cypress (Chamaecyparis) are also suitable as evergreen balcony plants. These can be combined with hardy flowering plants. In this way, you can create the right mood for the season with lots of colorful flowers from May to around October.Plant balcony boxes
It is varied if you use a flower box that is as long as possible and plant small evergreen trees between the bloomers. When one finishes flowering, simply fill in the empty space with seasonal decorations. In winter, glittering chains and Christmas baubles look pretty between the year-round plants. In the fall, a pumpkin might even fit in for Halloween, and in the summer, any space in between could be filled with a pinwheel or something similar.
In addition to slow-growing shrubs and trees, perennials are suitable for year-round use. Most species are extremely robust and frost-resistant down to sub-zero temperatures. They are ideal for year-round planting because they sometimes bloom for six and even up to eight months from spring to autumn.
Hardy flowering and green plants
To bring color to the balcony all year round, you can use the following hardy flowering and green plants for year-round planting.
- Rockrose (perennial) - blooms from May to August
- Torch Lily - blooms from June to September
- Dwarf spindle (Euonymus fortunei) - white or yellow foliage
- Clematis orientalis and tangutica - flowers from June to late October/mid-November
- Azalea (Rhododendron simsii) - specially bred for balcony planting - blooms from May to June
- Partridgeberry - blooms April and May - small, red berry-like fruits in autumn
- Winter jasmine - blooms from December to April -
- Christmas rose - blooms from January to April
TIP: Regardless of which seasonal or year-round planting you choose, if you are renting, it is advisable to find out whether this is permitted before you plan to install a flower box. Some landlords forbid this.
Kitchen herbs as planting
Kitchen herbs as year-round planting on the balcony
You do not necessarily have to equip your flower box with perennials, trees or blooming flowers. You can also be practical and take advantage of your balcony planting by planting herbs. Many types of herbs can stay outside on the balcony all year round because they don't mind the winter cold.
- Shrub basil - down to minus seven degrees
- olive herb
- winter cress
- curry herb
- fruit sage
TIP: You can often find a small spot for a herb between the balcony plants. Choosing one that smells pleasant to you, like lavender or vanilla-scented meadowsweet, will make your time on the balcony even more enjoyable.
Climbing plants as a privacy screen
Do you like your privacy on your balcony or are you bothered by the front or side view? Then you can also plant a climbing plant in your flower box. Depending on the species, you can let these grow high on a side wall on the balcony or add a special tendril to the flower box for the climbing plant to grow up.
ivy offers, for example, an option for the whole year. It grows densely and is hardy. But it has to be cut more often because it grows fast. Other climbing plants with which you can plant your flower boxes all year round are among others
- Climbing spindle (bot. Euonymus fortunei) - white-green or white-yellow leaves - hardy
- Honeysuckle (bot. Lonicera caprifolium) - flowers - hardy
- Japanese hops (bot. Humulus scandens) - annual - not suitable for year-round planting
- Virginia creeper (bot. Parthenocissus quinquefolia) - a classic among climbing plants
- Star jasmine - fragrant - evergreen - blooming
- climbing roses
Consider preferred locations
Unfortunately, unlike a garden, the balcony usually only offers one orientation. When buying, you should therefore pay attention to the preferred lighting conditions and choose the plants taking into account the direction of your balcony. Below you will find some inspiration as to which plants and herbs are suitable for south-facing or north-facing balconies all year round.
- Snowdrop (Galanthus)
- Lemon tree (Citrus limon)
- Mountain savory (Satureja montana)
- Crocuses (Crocus)
- Grape Hyacinth (Muscari)
- Lavender (Lavendula)
- Sage (Salvia)
- Oregano (Origanum)
- Chrysanthemums (Chrysanthemum)
- Spanish daisy (Erigeron karvinskianus)
- Perennials (Linum perenne)
- Crested and Brocade Sedge (Carex comans and dolichostachya)
- Cranesbill (Geranium)
- Pennywort (Lysimachia nummularia)
- Busy Lizzie (Impatiens walleriana)
- Golddrop perennial (Chiastophyllum oppositifolium)
- Violet (Viola odorata)
- Larkspur (Corydalis elata)
- Begonia (Begonia)
- Daylily (Hemerocallis minor)
- Loyal to men (Lobelia erinus)
- Boxwood (Buxus sempervirens)
- Spleenwort (Asplenium trichomanes)