A lot of people who had no time to build a garden due to their busy professional lives took to gardening during the pandemic-led lockdown. Seeing the literal fruits of your labor grow and flourish is divinely therapeutic. Gardening is now not just limited to people with big yards in the front of their homes. Even with a small balcony or a window sill, people can build beautiful and lush green gardens.
If your apartment lacks a proper balcony or any kind of space to build a beautiful garden, you can always build a terrace garden. As the name suggests, such a garden is built on the terrace of your home, an area that gets much better sunlight. While doing so, some go for pots and planters, some choose to cover their entire terrace, and some map out the area with soil and plant a garden. Such gardens are easy to build and maintain. You can grow anything from flowering plants and shrubs, ornamental plants, to even a vegetable and fruit patch. It is highly enjoyable and therapeutic.
A step-by-step guide
1) To start with, you need to ensure that your building or house can take the weight of the plants and the soil. Waterproofing is another thing that you have to take care of on your roof before you begin the garden. An additional round of waterproofing is always recommended.
2) Drainage is an important aspect of gardening anywhere. However, when it comes to terrace gardening especially, drainage should be planned out very well. Plants will not get enough nutrients if the water washes away too much soil. But the same plants would rot if they stand in stagnant water or soggy soil. A set up of burnt coal and sand with perforated pipes to drain out excess water from the terrace is one of the most common tricks used when one is covering the whole terrace. If you are going for potted plants, no such efforts are necessary. A simple way to drain out water from the pots is enough.
3) Mapping out a plan for the placements of plants, whether potted or planted directly, is essential. You should decide where the shrubs, big plants or creepers, or hanging plants should go to suit their light and other requirements. Similarly, if your terrace is also used by the public for recreational activities, the garden should be planned out in a way that enough space is available.
4) Selection of plants is a pivotal step in building any garden. For a terrace garden, it is always advisable to go for plants with fibrous roots rather than deep-rooted plants. You should also keep in mind the space available and the amount and kind of light that your terrace gets. You can go for vegetable or fruit patches also depending on the space available. From saplings to seeds, you can start your terrace garden any way you wish.
5) As with other kinds of gardens, you should consider which plants you’re planting while getting potting soil. While some plants require a mix of potting soil and coco peat, some are good to go with just coco peat. You should keep in mind which one to go for. Selecting the right kind of soil is the first step in ensuring a flourishing plant.
6) Finally, the kind of pots or planters that you need for your plants depends on the amount of space on your terrace. If you have a huge terrace, you can always go for ornamental planters in various shapes and sizes. However, for smaller and cramped terraces, it is good to go with basic pots that serve the purpose. If you are going for a terrace garden that covers the whole terrace, you need to map out the space for various plants. This would give it an organized look and a better setup for you.
Once you have assembled all the required items, you can start gardening as you would do anywhere. With the right items and a good plan, you can start building your lush and beautiful terrace garden in no time.