Plants for small spaces, such as balconies, bring life and colour to a sometimes dull area. It’s important though to ensure you choose the correct plants for your balcony. Husband and wife team from The Small Garden, Tom & Carolynn are experts in all things greenery. They have kindly shared with us their top ten plants for you to transform your balcony into an inviting space that thrives all year round.
Landscape Gardener, Tom Brooks, says “Balconies are one of the most challenging spaces to grow plants, and that’s why the secret to a successful balcony garden is to choose the right plants for the conditions. Whether your balcony is shaded or drenched in sun all day, you’ll find the best plants for your balcony or small space below.
Most of these plants only require minimal watering and little or no fertilising. If you have failed at balcony gardening in the past, chances are it’s because you chose the wrong plants. So if you are ready to bring some nature into your life and your balcony, try these hardy, low-maintenance plants.”
The Ten Balcony Plants Just For You
1. Aptenia Cordifolia
This low-growing plant is a hardy perennial. Its succulent leaves make it tough enough for balcony conditions, while its small red flowers provide year-round colour.
2. Schlumbergera (Zygocactus)
Native to Brazil, the Zygocactus thrives in pots. With delicate bell-like flowers that bloom in winter, it is ideal for adding colour to a balcony.
3. Plumeria Pudica (Evergreen Frangipani)
Unlike common frangipanis, this plant is evergreen and more shrub-like. With delicate white flowers and deep green foliage, it adds colour and impact.
4. Alcantarea Imperialis
With its broad leaf and deep red colouring, the hardy Alcantarea Imperialis creates instant impact. In winter, the red underside of the leaf brightens, enhancing the appeal of this striking plant.
5. Carissa Desert Star
The Carissa Desert Star provides glossy evergreen foliage and sweetly scented white flowers that appear in the warmer months. Even in a pot, it can grow up to 1 metre high.
6. Portulaca Hot Spots
This low-maintenance plant yields flowers in pinks, reds, yellows and oranges. Being semi-succulent, it is tough, thrives in warm climates and will produce masses of flowers in summer.
7. Cryptomeria Japonica (Globosa Nana)
A hardy, dense and textural evergreen shrub, Globosa Nana is a great way to create privacy. It can grow up to 1.5 metres high and has lush foliage year round.
8. Rhaphiolepis Indica (Spring Pearl)
This low-maintenance compact shrub is tough as nails. It can withstand exposed windy conditions and still produce flushes of white and pink flowers.
9. Strelitzia Nicolai (White Bird of Paradise)
A striking plant, the White Bird of Paradise looks great positioned in a corner. Despite its tropical appearance, it can withstand cold temperatures but should be protected from wind.
10. Nolina Nelsonii (Nelson’s Bear Grass)
This striking architectural plant adds texture to any balcony. A hardy species, it will happily withstand full exposure to wind, sun, frost and salt spray.
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