There is nothing like having a green space for relaxation among the concrete jungle that many of us live in and for some, having access to even the tiniest bit of greenery and soil can put us back in touch with nature.
I hope the tips below will help inspire you to create or perfect your outdoor space.
Furniture and Lighting
Just about any type of furniture under the sun can be used as patio furniture; however, it is important to choose pieces that will stand up to nature’s many moods. Weather-proofing can be as easy as providing a yearly coating of sealant, paint (Rustoleum is our favorite), or appropriate storage. For gardeners on a budget, consider scouting thrift stores and garage sales for wooden or metal furniture that can be made new with a coat or two of paint.
Once you have the perfect furniture chosen, accessorize with pillows and color. Many home improvement stores and patio furniture specialty stores sell pillows and cushions made with durable fabric that will prolong the life of your outdoor accessories.
A small water feature can also be installed quickly and easily to provide soothing sounds. Many smaller sized fountains can be purchased online or in department stores. Often all they require is a little water and an electrical outlet to operate.
Finally, lighting can provide the perfect ambiance for your roof-top paradise. The garden sections at Target and Pier1 have a wide variety of specialty lighting for patios such as miniature lanterns, glass bobbles and the like. Typical Christmas lights can also be easily hung along walls and between trellises to give your space that Parisian café feel.
Creating Natural Walls
Use wooden trellises installed along the edge of your garden along with climbing vines, such as Morning Glory and Sweet Autumn Clematis, to create living walls for your roof garden. These units are easy to build yourself but can also be purchased at stores such as Home Depot and Lowes, or online here.
To add depth and extra texture to your “walls” choose large bushes or small trees in large planters to place along the wall. The extra foliage will help block out city lights and sounds. This process may take some time but will be well worth the effort.
Choosing the Right Plants
As you have probably surmised, having a roof top garden will allow for lots of sunlight so it is important to choose plants that can withstand the heat and light. The best way to learn what plants will do well in your climate is to visit some nurseries, talk to the employees (they are an excellent source of knowledge), and pay close attention to the growing tips on the tags that accompany the plant.
One of the best ways to create that roof-top paradise you’ve been dreaming of is to combine several different types of plants and flowers in your garden. Consider planting lilacs, roses, wisteria, violets, basil, chamomile, mint, and lavender to give your garden a variety of color, texture, and fragrance.
Planting a variety of fruits and vegetables can also provide you with organic produce at a fraction of the cost. Plus, what could taste better than something you grew with your own two hands?