Photos of my Balcony – May, 2011

by Fern on May 11, 2011

in Inspiration

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It’s a little disorganized on my balcony thanks to all the photo shoots I’ve been doing out there for the book, and all the plant samples I’ve been sent. I’m going to use all those Proven Winners plants in a how to video, so keep an eye out for that. And eagle eyed readers will be able to spot several of the plants pictured in these photos in my book, which I think it going to be titled Small-Space Container Gardens and is scheduled to come out in early 2012. By the way, you can get a sneak peak of the cover on the Facebook page I just created for the book.

What’s new and fabulous in your container garden?







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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

fer May 12, 2011 at 12:05 am

Your balcony looks great! So neat and well arranged.
I wish mine was as big or tidy, I can hardly fit and everything is in chaos.

Loved the succulents in the red pumpkin and the little wooden box on the corner.


Fern May 12, 2011 at 12:24 pm

That is pretty disorganized for my balcony! I’ve received a lot of plants to test out and I don’t really have room for them all!

T R May 12, 2011 at 7:38 am

WOW! That looks FAB! It tickles me to see all those Proven Winner tags. Gotta love PW plants. I can’t wait to get out this weekend to “stock up” for the summer season. Here in the Twin Cities, we have to wait until May 15 (zone 4) before we put most stuff out so your blog has been tiding me over until then. Thanks, Fern! You truly are an inspiration to all of the apartment gardeners.


Fern May 12, 2011 at 12:25 pm

TR–Yeah, I love their plants too. I’m actually going to be using some of those to make a how to video, so stay tuned!

cassie May 12, 2011 at 2:18 pm

How do you determine which herbs can share a container? I’ve had problems in the past with some growing way taller than the others and killing them. Any advice would be great!


Fern May 12, 2011 at 6:26 pm

Cassie–First, I usually try to match annuals with annuals and perennials with perennials. But I also pay attention to which herbs tend to spill over the side, which tend to be upright, etc. I try to have a nice mix of different growth habits. Sometimes plant tags will tell you that info, but gardening is a lot of trial and error. :-)

Barri May 12, 2011 at 5:01 pm

LOVE it! i can only aspire to one day have a big girl balcony like this!!!! =] love all the space you have, LUCKY girl!


Fern May 12, 2011 at 6:24 pm

Thanks Barri! Although the amount of space I have maybe deceptive. My balcony is only 4 feet wide and 10 feet long.

Debra Lee Baldwin May 12, 2011 at 7:14 pm

Well, you can guess which compositions are MY favorite, Fern! Very pretty.


Fern May 12, 2011 at 9:44 pm

Thanks Debra! I have a guess…I’m going to post a close up tomorrow.

Ruth May 13, 2011 at 2:42 pm

Wow it’s amazing how much you fit on your balcony! Do you have any tips for keeping the mess from making it in to the living room? Do you mix dirt for all those pots every year? I was too cheap to buy new dirt so reused my old dirt and put a layer of compost on top – hope that works! Will have more compost as soon as I remember to feed my worms!

I spent this week planting my whole garden – I was a little behind! And brought a lot of dirt in carrying things to and from the garage, the house, the balcony, and the front steps.

I have a 14×16 ft balcony so I made a raised garden bed 3×6 for veggies and herbs – going to try the square foot gardening technique. That’s a 3rd floor balcony. I wanted to have stuff for cooking near the kitchen so on my front steps I have pots with lettuce and combinations of herbs and flowers. My steps are shady so I’m hoping the lettuce will not bolt as quickly – it gets a few hours of sun in the middle of the day so hopefully the basil won’t be too sad!

My technique of watering my houseplants is often to pick up half empty water glasses that are lying around and dump them into the plants – since we compost with coffee grounds and tea bags I was wondering whether it’s a good idea to dump my half empty cups of coffee and tea into the plants as well? I’m guessing they don’t like diet mountain dew.

Anyway love following your blog and thanks for all the great ideas!


Fern May 14, 2011 at 7:06 pm

Ruth–When I repot my plants, I do use fresh soil but I don’t repot every year. Potting soil is depleted quickly, and you may find that reusing old soil produces less than stellar results. Good luck!

Deborah May 15, 2011 at 12:16 pm

Since I’ve downsized from over and acre to a condo, I’ve learned to love container gardening. Just found your site and love it. I’m in Paris right now and enjoy looking UP at the wonderful gardens hanging from windows.


Mary Ellen Gambutti May 16, 2011 at 3:06 pm

Very nice photos and balcony! We have yet to have consistently warm temps this spring to have such a full display as yours :-) But we’ll soon have the succulents and tropicals out for the summer on our small patio…


Mary Dailey May 17, 2011 at 4:22 am

You have done a fantastic job with your container gardening. We’re on 2/3 of an acre, and I still love my hostas and some roses in pots. I like coming up with new ideas for annuals in pots every year too! Well done and thanks for sharing!


Rebecca May 19, 2011 at 6:18 am

Looks beautiful, Fern! Can’t wait to move my plants outside.


Orchidea June 14, 2011 at 6:28 am

Wow… you balcony is really nice. Now that finally I also have a balcony I have started with growing a lot of thisngs… ut I did not know that you could have a fig tree on your balcony;)
I will soon put some picture on my blog.


Andrea July 3, 2011 at 4:03 am

I live in a climate that gets very cold overnights starting early in September, sometimes with frost warnings early in that month as well. My balcony is 5 1/2 ft w by 18 1/2 ft l. I only get early morning sun, so I am looking for plants that I can have on my balcony through out the summer and move inside in the fall. Any ideas on what plants are goo for my climate and can be brought indoors? Also, I am wondering how to keep my plants from getting bugs, ect from infesting the soil. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.


Daisy October 30, 2011 at 4:38 pm

I love the varied containers! They make the container garden so artistic.


Fern October 30, 2011 at 9:51 pm

Thanks Daisy!

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