Plant encyclopedia for the balcony garden

In order for your own balcony garden to grow and flourish, it is important to choose the planting carefully. With our plant encyclopedia for the balcony you can see at a glance what to look out for with the various types of vegetables, herbs and co.

The world of plants is fascinating: shapes, colors, scents and fruits are incredibly versatile. Even useful plants shine in a unique beauty during flowering and mostly serve as important nourishment for bees and other insects.
In order for the floral splendor to shine on your own balcony or in the garden, it is important to consider the needs of the plants from the start. The plant encyclopedia shows you at a glance what your balcony vegetables or small herb garden feel comfortable with and can grow with.

While some specimens prefer a sunny location, for example, others feel more comfortable in shady places. When planning your own balcony garden, the alignment and the incidence of light should be considered. Likewise, the irrigation and the option of rain showers on covered balconies: Not all plants want to be watered equally.

With the balcony garden lexicon, you can see at a glance what you need to consider with the most popular balcony plants. In this way, you can already consider the different needs when planning your little paradise.

Plant lexicon: balcony vegetables and herbs

Not every type of fruit and vegetable is suitable for a promising cultivation on the balcony. Because the balcony is not a fertile garden bed or a productive field. If you cannot call a large roof terrace your own, you have to save space. The following list of plant varieties explains which green is best for this and what needs it has.

One more thing in advance: Those who do not trust themselves to start growing with the planting of (organic) seeds, or those who start balcony gardening a little too late in spring, can skip the first steps with (organically certified) seedlings from the nursery or make up for lost time.

Basil is one of the most popular representatives of summer cuisine. But he needs it warm. With a germination temperature of 20 degrees, it should be sown indoors on the windowsill in April and only outside after e-mail. Clay pots that are fully sunny and sheltered from the wind are best suited. From April, place indoor seedlings outside every hour to harden. It should be noted that basil does not tolerate temperatures below six degrees and it also does not like the proximity to dill, sage and thyme.

Beans can be sown outside from May at a minimum temperature of ten degrees. They should be placed in a warm, sunny and sheltered location, preferably around tomatoes, radishes, Swiss chard and savory. Since beans are climbers, they can be integrated perfectly as privacy screens on the balcony.

Dill forms deep tap roots and needs deep pots (about 25 or more centimeters) in which to stay. Since it sprouts after a few days, it can be sown from April to July. So that it can develop into a strong, space-consuming plant, remove weaker shoots and keep the soil mixed with compost moist. Its strong aroma may repel pests, but parsley and basil cannot handle it. In contrast, dill promotes the growth of carrots, lettuce and onions.

Nasturtiums are frugal and thrive in loamy, calcareous and sandy soil with sufficient water supply. The barren the soil, the more flowers it will develop in full sun, where it can be sown from mid-May. In addition to leaves and fruits, you can enjoy the flowers of the nasturtium.

Potato pelts
Potatoes don’t necessarily need a lot of space. They are happy with deep pots or sacks of plants, but they need compost and moist soil. Before the potatoes can be plugged, the tubers must sprout in a light, cool place for up to three weeks. The harvest can begin in late summer. Potatoes with spinach and peppermint maintain a good partnership.

Marjoram prefers sunny, sheltered locations and well-drained, nutrient-rich soil with a high proportion of lime. It is a slowly growing plant that needs warmth and requires temperatures of 20 degrees or more. The seeds are planted indoors in mid-March, and sowing outside is possible until the end of May. At the beginning the soil has to be kept moist, afterwards marjoram needs little water.

Swiss chard
This plant, which is related to spinach, likes it sunny to partial shade, with a little compost and sufficient water supply. From mid-April it can be sown both inside and outside. Although it grows up to 60 centimeters, it tastes best when the leaves are 15 centimeters high.

Deep vessels in a sunny to partially shaded location are an absolute must for these vegetables. Depending on the variety – whether early, mid-early or late – sowing is between March and May. So that it doesn’t get too tight for them, place the young plants even more generously. They thrive even better if you mix some sand in the ground. Carrots go well with onions, tomatoes and garlic. They help ward off the carrot fly, which is harmful to the root vegetables.

Strawberries pamper you with small, aromatic fruits during the balcony season. The seedlings you have purchased should be placed in a sunny to partially shaded place, and the soil should be enriched with compost and covered with straw to better retain moisture. Culinary, you wouldn’t combine it with onions, garlic and parsley, but it’s a good idea for the location. Cut back the plants for the winter and place them covered in a sheltered place.

Oregano is also one of the Mediterranean herbs that like it sunny and not too wet. Cut after flowering and place in a sheltered place to overwinter.

Bell peppers are warmth-loving sun worshipers and thrive best if well fertilized in a location facing south, where wind and moisture cannot harm them. Therefore, only pour from below. They can be sown indoors from mid-April and then put outdoors four weeks later. Very much in the vicinity of carrots, tomatoes and salads.

Hot peppers and chilli
Hot peppers and chilli have the same requirements as peppers.

Parsley comes with curly and very aromatic smooth leaves. Parsley grown in the apartment can go outside in the partial shade as early as April, where it can cope well with onions, tomatoes and strawberries. You can also enjoy her in winter if you offer her a space in the kitchen.

Peppermint needs a lot of nutrients. In sun to partial shade, she loves humus-rich soil with a little sand and lime. Apart from the fact that she does not want to stand next to chamomile, she has no further requirements for plant-based neighborhoods.

Radishes can be sown outside in early March. If you then cover them up, they grow pretty quickly. They are frugal so that both sun and shade are fine with them. With enough water, they develop beautiful tubers that can be harvested after four weeks. If you re-sow every two weeks, you can look forward to a regular harvest. When grown, they harmonize with lettuce, carrots, tomatoes, Swiss chard, beans and parsley.

Rosemary is another representative of the Mediterranean herbs. It therefore likes sunny, gets by with a moderate supply of water and prefers loose, slightly stony soil. Because rosemary does not germinate very reliably, it is advisable to buy plants and place them in mid / late May with plenty of room to grow. It can only overwinter if it is well packed or in a cool room.

Salad takes up little space, so pots in the sun or partial shade are sufficient. Its rapid growth enables a harvest around six weeks after sowing, which can be planned for mid-April. Or you can get seedlings a little later in a nursery. Picked salads, the leaves of which are plucked from the outside inwards as required, as well as cut salads and rocket are ideal for the balcony. Salad feels good next to carrots, tomatoes, onions, beans, radishes and dill.

Sage is a subshrub which, once sown, can grow into an impressive form on the balcony over several summers. It is important that the sage is sunny and dry. Like rosemary, it needs a good protective cover outside or a dark, cool location in the apartment to overwinter.

Spinach grows best when the days are short and the nights long, as it starts to shoot when it’s warm. For a spring harvest, sow spinach from late February to April – or even in September. Then the young plants want to be covered when there is clear frost (frost near the ground). For a harvest in autumn, sow in August. Spinach makes no special demands on the earth, the main thing is to keep it moist. In addition, spinach prefers partial shade and it should be protected from strong winds. You can plant spinach between tomatoes well. Swiss chard and spinach, although related, do not go well together.

As a Mediterranean herb, thyme loves temperatures from 20 degrees and should be sown in clay pots from May. In soil that is not too rich in nutrients, also a bit sandy or gravelly, rather calcareous. In addition, you have to keep them moist at the beginning. Later on, thyme needs little water. The shoots should be divided up during cultivation: each vigorous plant gets its own pot in which it can withstand several years. In addition, thyme is a good neighbor, only marjoram and basil have a minor problem with it.

Lemon balm
Lemon balm is spreading. Therefore you should give it a lot of space in a sunny place. Regular watering and annual fertilization contribute to their growth. So that it can continue to develop well, harvest the leaves by snapping them off at the leaf axis. A cut is necessary after flowering. Lemon balm comes in a sheltered spot over the winter.

Onions can be planted from March. However, only a third of their tubers get into the soil, which is only moderately watered. You like to share your sunny location with carrots and nasturtiums.

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