Growing plants in pots on a balcony is even more difficult than having them on a veranda or in the back yard. Why? On the balcony there is very little else to catch the eye, so if the garden pots are not beautiful, or if the plants in them look jaded, it will be really noticeable and the pretty display you were aiming for simply won’t materialise.
So the best pots for balconies are those that both look really attractive and have several other elements that help the plant to grow well. Pots with thicker walls offer a bit of insulation from the heat that many balconies suffer from. They are also heavier so can withstand winds that are often much more forceful on a high rise balcony than at ground level. However, they should not be too heavy as balconies usually have a maximum weight load owners must adhere to for safety.
Drain and stain
Pots for balconies should also have a saucer underneath or be designed so that excess water won’t run out the bottom and stain the cement on the balcony. Dirty water can drip off your balcony and fall or blow onto the one below. Not a good way to be friends with the neighbours. Pots should be chosen to suit the growth habits of the plant in them. If the plant is going to grow really tall, the pot needs to be larger and heavy enough to prevent the whole lot blowing over.
Square and squat
A round pot is idea for a balcony because it has more soil in it and weighs a bit more, offering more room for the plant’s roots and more support as it grows higher. If you can’t get a round one, try for one that is square and squat – that does not slope in at the base. These would not be really stable in high wind situations.
Colour is important too. The pots need to suit the colour of the balcony as well as the colour of the plant in them. Contrasting light pots with darker plants or vice versa is good. However, sometimes a plant that is almost the same colour as the pot can create a mood look that is impressive. Varying the heights of the pot breaks up the lines and angles created by them and adds interest.
So next time you are out shopping for garden pots, remember some of these tips or at least ensure the pot suits the plant you are going to grow in it. Good potting mix and some fertiliser will help to make sure your plants thrive and that is the main thing. Add a whimsical ornament and your pot plant garden will bring you joy.