A once-bare, tiny yard behind a row house in Brooklyn, N.Y., now features a canopy of plants, such as crepe myrtles and camellias. Landscape designer Michael Van Valkenburgh planted trees that naturally cool the garden terrace and house and created a bird habitat. The new paving is mica schist, which is arranged in a pattern that mimics logs flowing down a river. The garden was a 2015 ASLA award winner.
Ryan Benoit and Chantal Aida Gordon of The Horticult threaded stainless steel rods through terra-cotta pots and suspended them from horizontal surfaces. These striking vertical gardens can punch up the smallest balconies and patios.
There are a variety of microgardening techniques to maximize your harvest, including utilizing space wisely with vertical garden solutions, and efficient water management and nutrient cycling, says Anne Gibson of TheMicroGardener.com. This vertical garden has lemon thyme, peppers, tomatoes and other plants.
Micro gardening opens up food growing possibilities for city dwellers, renters and others. Roof gardens are a great way to grow in urban spaces, but Anne Gibson of TheMicroGardeners.com says it's important to consider drainage and local weather conditions. If exposed to winds or strong sun without protection, plants tend to dry out more quickly.
Position microgardens on balconies where there is structural strength. Moist soil gets very heavy, so consider the total weight (soil + pot + plants + water) of each container, says Anne Gibson of TheMicroGardener.com. You may need to consult an engineer to find out if the structural capacity can handle the additional weight. It is wise to position heavy pots close to the strength of the structural wall or around the perimeter.