Gardening in Tight Spaces

Schrader garden 001 - CopyBy Teresa Woodard

Today’s gardeners are getting more efficient when it comes to gardening in tight quarters. Whether they’re city dwellers planting a garden on a balcony or empty nesters tending a small patio garden, these gardeners are finding savvy solutions for their limited real estate.

Here are few tips:

Go dwarf – Growers are introducing many space-saving perennials and shrubs. Check out the dwarf conifers and hydrangeas and miniature hostas. IMG_1611Even edible plants are now available in pint-sized versions. Try BrazelBerry dwarf berry bushes, columnar fruit trees, espaliered (grown vertically along a trellis) trees and grafted tomato plants.

Grow up–Chose upright and vining plants to take advantage of vertical space. Columnar hornbeams create a narrow privacy screen along a walkway. IMG_5344 - CopyFlowering vines like clematis, hydrangea and honeysuckle climb trellises, patio walls and fences.

Repeat details – Details count in not-so-big spaces. Invest in quality stone or ceramic containers or architectural features like window boxes or an eye-catching arbor.

Create illusions — Mirrors can be added to garage windows and garden walls to bring more light to shaded areas and reflect the space to increase its apparent size.IMG_2678

Cluster containers – Maximize patio space with clusters of container gardens. Even vegetables, dwarf trees and shrubs can be grown in containers.


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