As we all know, spending time outdoors does wonders for our health and mental well-being. That is why having (and tending to) a garden directly links up with reducing stress levels and lowering blood pressure.
But having said that, it is also true that not everybody has the space at home for a lush, green garden. Instead they may only have a small courtyard, terrace or balcony, which presents rather challenging spots to create a garden. Challenging, but not impossible.
So, let’s change ‘garden’ to ‘floating garden’ and see that challenge turn into a stylish opportunity, as a floating garden is a perfect solution for small spaces. The floating garden (also known as ‘hanging garden’) consists of small containers strung from high places that contain small plants and flowers. These containers are not limited to any type of materials, and, like plant pots, can be made from just about anything.
So then, what factors do you need to consider when it comes to the floating garden? We’re glad you asked…
The same way that flowers add colour and fragrance to a home (or any space, really) is how they will zhoosh up your hanging garden. There are lots and lots of floral options to consider, from those with small and striking petals to others that create a cascading effect by spilling their leaves over the container’s edge.
Fuchsia is just one flower that you can consider. This flower comes in a variety of colours (like yellow, orange, and white), and works better as an indoor plant, seeing that it prefer semi-sunny positions.
Another great flower that all gardeners swear by is the Petunia, one of the most popular flowers that thrive in hanging gardens. Other flowers that you may very well consider include Sweet Alyssum, Black Eyed Susan, and Begonias.
For those of us who wish to indulge our green thumb, the window sill rarely presents sufficient space for the indoor alternative to gardening. This is just one of many reasons why a lot of people opt for floating gardens instead. As they make full use of vertical rather than horizontal space, it is a more functional option for the space-pressed among us.
Plants can be a variety of sizes and hung at different heights. This makes it possible to create a completely unique and original design. You can also get splendidly creative when it comes to your plant containers – they come in a variety of materials, from simple fibre to wood, and from glass jars to concrete pots.
After you've decided that the floating garden is ideal for your home, you now need to choose a spot. Make sure that you opt for an area that receives adequate sunlight, which is often near windows or glass doors, or outside on balconies and decks.
Next, consider what sort of containers you will put your plants in. This can depend on the type of style you want your garden to have. Felt pockets can be made in numerous colours, making your garden bright and energetic. Glass containers can be hung with colourful string or attached to a wall. Or how about opting for oversized teacups for your little flowers?
When it comes to hanging, you also have some thinking to do. Your plants can be hung individually from hooks, attached to a board which is hung from the ceiling, or stuck to a backing board.
Some plants don’t really belong in a floating garden, while others are excellent choices.
Determine the amount of space you want to dedicate to your floating garden. If you are opting for an interior garden, then choose plants that will thrive indoors. Ferns are good choices, as they can create an attractive sight of flowing branches sprouting down the pots. For the cooks out there, why not consider a hanging herb garden to literally spice up your culinary treats?
If you are planning an outdoor garden, consider any plant that requires more light. These can be flowers, foliage, as well as herbs and vegetables.
Although there are many plants that thrive in hanging baskets, stick to the rules of container gardening: use a nutrient-rich soil and be sure to allow for drainage; choose plants that will thrive in your climate and for the spot where you plan to hang the basket.
Of course you need to consider how high or low you want those plants and flowers to hang. Position hanging baskets or upside-down planters where you won’t knock your head as you walk past, and make sure that their weight is adequately supported.
Avoid hanging them too high, as this can present some difficulty when it comes to watering and maintaining them. If you don’t have any other option, invest in a pulley system so you can lower and raise your planter.
Consider the maximum height the plant is likely to grow when it is mature. This will have an impact on how high you can hang it, but also on what type (and size) of container you will need.
Speaking of keeping safe, is your garden the ideal playground for little ones? Then see: Ouch! Make Your Garden Safer For Kids.
Those plants might look magical floating above your head, but they will still require the normal elements, such as water.
Seeing as the plants in a hanging garden have small containers without much soil to retain water, they can dry out quite easily. For this reason it is important to water them regularly. If you have a number of plants located together, consider installing a drip irrigation system to ensure they do not dry out.
And what about other maintenance factors, like fertilising and pruning? A slow-release fertiliser is the best option for these plants. This will eliminate the risk of overfeeding them, which is easily done due to the small containers.
Pruning is also important. Those hanging plants can become heavy when they grow too large, increasing the risk of falling from hooks and baskets.
So, be sure to partake in regular maintenance of your floating garden. With the right amount of TLC from your side, it is sure to look dazzling!