Vertical Gardening

Attention all small-space, bedless green fingers! Here’s your chance to grow vegetables, herbs, flowers, and foliage without a garden. Take your passion to the walls and grow your heart out with these nifty vertical gardening ideas. Bring your patio to life, suspend your edibles, dare to go soil-less, and have some fun with hanging baskets.


Geometric Greenery

A bare patio or balcony wall is prime location to begin your first vertical gardening project. You’ll need a drill and screws to secure pots against the wall in your desired shape/layout. Try an elegant symmetrical grid style, leaving a pot-width space between each container (4 pots across by 4 pots down is a good start). You can also experiment with circle pot arrangements, horizontal lines, or a diagonal pattern with cascading creepers in the top pots.

Plant picks: 'Compact Royal Jewels' Lobelia for a flowering spiller, English Ivy for dramatic trails of leaves, and 'Versa Green Halo' Coleus for an exotic-looking mound.

Vertical Garden Coleus
Soil-less Hydroponics

Dare to be different with an intriguing water-based, soil-less garden. Hydroponic planting gives you complete control of the environment, minimises pests, boosts plant growth, saves water, eliminates weeds, AND gives you eye-catching, living décor. There are a variety of hydroponic growing kits available, not only for vertical growing. Consult your garden centre advisor for different installation options and nutrient formulas.

Plant picks: Almost all herbs, leafy veggies such as celery and lettuce, fruits such as Key limes and avocados, and indoor ornamentals such as Philodendron, Peace Lily, Chinese Evergreen, and Spider Plant.


Hanging Around

Hanging baskets are ideal space-savers that add texture and life to baren corners, on the patio or indoors. Use a chain to hang containers from the roof (climbing plants will play up the chain and spill over the edges), or try half baskets attached to the wall with an added trellis behind them for trailing plants.

Urban gardening on your balcony Balcony Gardening

An urban escape on your stoep
Life is a Garden – Balcony Gardening

We know that many of our gardeners have green fingers longer than their balconies can accommodate. That’s why Life is a Garden has made November all about our city living gardeners out there. You can still make your patio pop, indulge your gardening cravings, and escape the city from your stoep, here’s how:

Life is a Garden – Balcony Gardening
Consider your style and space

Before diving in, there are a few things to consider: What do you use your balcony for the most? Are you more of a lock-up-and-go or do you have some time to spend on maintaining your balcony greens? Does your space get full, partial, or no sun at all? How would you like your dream balcony to present you and your personal flavour? The answers to these questions can really help you conceptualise your space to make it practical for your lifestyle. Now that that’s sorted, let’s get your urban oasis going!

An urban escape on your stoep
Let there be light and life

Any balcony easily comes to life with a little light! Your local GCA Garden Centre has a lovely variety of solar lights you can add to the space. Try draping some LED fairy lights from your railing with a few scattered lanterns in between your new pot plants, or perhaps hanging from a beam or two. Speaking of pots, container gardening is all the rage, especially edible ones! Using different sized pots in your balcony garden adds height and variety to the space, while also giving you an opportunity to play with different styles. You could upcycle a sweet teapot into a planter with your favourite tea time herb, or get the kids to decorate some cans and transform them into pot plants for a lovely homely feel.

Zen your den

Ditch the cold concrete and cover your stoep with some lovely faux grass. Available at your favourite GCA Garden Centre, there are a variety of soft and luscious faux grasses to choose from, and the fab thing is that you never have to cut or water it!

Bring the outdoors in

Why stop at gumboots and sun hats? This month we’re talking all about taking your passion for gardening to the bedroom, living room, office, and everywhere else! Life is a Garden is helping you bring the outdoors- indoors, with a few fabulous ideas, tips and trends, and a whole lot of greenspiration to help you create a gardening sanctuary where ever you go. We’ve also included some perfectly suited plant picks to get you going, which are all indigenous and waiting for you at your local GCA Garden Centre.

A green wall to enthral

Bring the garden inside with you and create a living, green wall of wonder! Vertical gardening is super stylish and brings texture, sophistication, and a sense of thriving abundance into your space. Green walls can consist of multiple indoor plant varieties, which can be grown using panels and hydroponics on free-standing structures or against a wall. Alternatively, you can also use soil containers mounted against a wall, which will soon be covered by your beautiful creepers and climbers.

A living wall in your home is a striking, visual buffet of lushness! In addition, they are great air purifiers and assist in keeping your home cool during summer. Consider creating your green wall in an area with good light and ventilation, such as the living room or bathroom where plants can absorb moisture from the air. Watering your wall may be done using misters, a light spray bottle, or a watering can with a long spout.

Plant picks: String of Beads (Senecio rowleyanus) for hardy and handsome hanging, Large Forest Asparagus(Asparagus falcatus) for a textured climber, and Flowering Ivy (Senecio macroglossus) for a fabulous little creeper.

Escape, decorate, create

Getting away from the hustle and bustle is as easy as pot, plant, tree!