Bringing The Outdoor Indoor

By TheHindu on 07 Jul 2015 | read

Get that green sheenAnd the best thing is you don’t need to have acres of land for itphoto: S. mahinsha

From old light bulbs for pots, to wooden ladders for planters — there are a gazillion ways to jazz up your balcony garden

It is summer when it is not raining that is. And home gardens are flourishing. Whether it is a money plant framing the kitchen window, chalkboard pots hanging in the patio, repurposed metal tins to hold flowering plants on the balcony railing, or colourful metal planters mounted on the wall, bringing nature into one’s living space has never been cooler.

According to Reena Chengappa, co-founder and director of My Sunny Balcony, “The increasing gardening trend the world over is to grow as much food as possible.

Early summer is the best for this, with a variety of greens, spinach, coriander and other herbs coming up very easily. Summer is also the season for tomatoes and brinjals. Another trend is to go colourful with bright planters and accessories in metal, terracotta and other media.” “Trendy and attractive space savers are the order of the day,” finds Tanya Brar, proprietor of Chulbuli Balcony.

“They could be metal railing planters which can be hung directly from balcony/terrace railings - they not only give you space below them to be utilised for other things but they also spruce up the area.”

“Get an indoor plant and place it where it gets some indirect light, for a window or a brightly lit source. Use recycled plastic bottles to make pots that you can hang up on your window sills or balconies and house plants in,” Reena says.

“Flowering plants include jasmines, adenium, marigold, portulaca, dianthus, petunia and water lilies. Vegetables such as spinach, amaranthus, brinjal, tomatoes and beans. Shade plants such as ferns, syngonium, money plant and palms are perfect for the summer.”

Tanya says: “Add pebbles in pots to retain moisture or spread dry grass clippings. Add as much colour as much as possible. Paint your dull terracotta base pots, add beautiful metal garden hook and lanterns.”

For our feathered friends, gardening enthusiast Rani Mathew, says: “You can buy an inexpensive birdbath, paint it in bright colours, fill it with water, and leave it on your balcony. There are also metal variants available in the market that can be suspended.”

DIY lovers can also experiment with different looks for their home garden. Use old light bulbs as planters for your balcony. Mason jar lanterns are the perfect way to light up a home garden. Convert an old wooden ladder into a plant holder. Old windowpanes can also be utilised for the purpose. Birdcages can be used either as planters or as a source of light. Just wind fairy lights around them and bring in that vintage charm. Hanging terrariums are a great way to lift the look of your mini-garden.

“Install a self-circulating water feature in a corner of your garden to bring in the sound of water.

Hang up wind chimes, beads, little trinkets and knick-knacks to give your garden a fairytale feel. Hanging tyres and mirrors are also great to accessorise your garden. Put in a little garden bench or coffee table in a corner where you can enjoy your garden in peace with a cup of tea,” says Reena.

Experiment, after all there’s so much more than silver bells and cockle shells to make your garden grow!

DIY lovers can also experiment with different looks for their home garden. Use old light bulbs as planters for your balcony