Selecting the right plants for an east-facing balcony is important as they will need to tolerate the amount of sunlight they will receive. East-facing balconies typically receive a moderate to a high amount of sunlight, so choosing plants that can thrive in these conditions is essential.
Having plants with a long shelf-life on an east-facing balcony provides many benefits. These plants are typically low maintenance, require less watering, and can survive for extended periods without needing constant care and attention. This makes them ideal for busy individuals or those with no green thumb. Additionally, having long-lasting plants on your balcony can add to the overall aesthetic and can improve the overall ambiance of your outdoor space.
5 Plants For East-Facing Balconies That Are Perfect Shelf-Life
Description of succulents and their characteristics
Succulents are a type of plant that store water in their leaves, stems, or roots. They are known for their ability to survive in dry and hot conditions, making them perfect for east-facing balconies that receive a lot of direct sunlight. Succulents come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, making them a great option for adding visual interest to your balcony.
List of popular succulents for east-facing balconies
- Echeveria: These rosette-shaped succulents come in a range of colors, including pink, red, and orange.
- Sedum: These low-growing succulents have fleshy leaves and come in a variety of colors, including green, blue, and purple.
- Aeonium: These succulents have large rosettes and come in a range of colors, including green, purple, and black.
- Agave: These succulents have large, spiky leaves and come in a variety of colors, including green, blue, and yellow.
- Aloe: These succulents have thick, fleshy leaves and come in a variety of colors, including green, yellow, and orange.
Care instructions for succulents
- Water: Succulents should be watered infrequently but deeply. Allow the soil to dry out completely before watering again.
- Light: Succulents prefer bright, direct sunlight.
- Soil: Succulents prefer well-draining soil, such as cactus or succulent potting mix.
- Fertilizer: Succulents do not require regular fertilization.
- Temperature: Succulents prefer warm temperatures, between 60-90 degrees Fahrenheit. They can tolerate some light frost, but should be protected from hard freezes.
Description of ferns and their characteristics
Ferns are a type of perennial plant that are known for their delicate and lacy leaves. They come in a wide variety of sizes and shapes, and can be found in both tropical and temperate climates. Ferns are also known for their ability to thrive in shade and damp conditions, making them a great option for east-facing balconies that receive less direct sunlight.
Some popular ferns for east-facing balconies include:
- Boston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata)
- Maidenhair Fern (Adiantum spp.)
- Staghorn Fern (Platycerium spp.)
- Lemon Button Fern (Nephrolepis cordifolia ‘Lemon Button’)
- Holly Fern (Cyrtomium falcatum)
Care Instructions for Ferns:
- Ferns prefer a humid environment, so misting them regularly will help keep them healthy.
- Keep the soil consistently moist, but avoid over-watering, which can lead to root rot.
- Ferns prefer well-draining soil, so make sure the container has drainage holes.
- Provide indirect sunlight as direct sunlight can scorch the fronds.
- Keep the ferns out of drafts and away from heating vents, as these can dry out the leaves.
- Ferns can benefit from occasional fertilization, using a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer.
Note: Ferns are not drought-tolerant, so they need regular watering and humidity.
Description of herbs and their characteristics
Herbs are a versatile and useful group of plants that have been used for centuries for culinary, medicinal and ornamental purposes. They are known for their distinctive aromas, flavors, and medicinal properties. Some popular herbs include basil, mint, cilantro, thyme, rosemary, and parsley. They are relatively easy to grow and care for, and are a great addition to any east-facing balcony.
Popular herbs for east-facing balconies include:
- Basil – a sweet-smelling herb that is perfect for making pesto, pasta sauces, and salads.
- Mint – a refreshing herb that can be used in teas, cocktails, and desserts.
- Cilantro – a flavorful herb that is often used in Mexican and Asian cuisine.
- Thyme – a perennial herb that is great for seasoning meats and vegetables.
- Rosemary – a woody herb that is perfect for grilling and roasting.
- Parsley – a versatile herb that can be used fresh or dried in a variety of dishes.
Care instructions for herbs:
- Herbs prefer well-draining soil and full sun.
- Keep the soil consistently moist, but not waterlogged.
- Regularly trim and pinch the tips of the herbs to encourage bushier growth.
- Fertilize every 2-4 weeks with a balanced fertilizer during the growing season.
- Harvest herbs as needed, taking care not to over-harvest and leaving enough leaves for the plant to continue growing.
- Move herbs inside during harsh winter weather.
Note: It’s worth to check the specific care instructions for each herb you are going to plant, as they may have different needs.
Description of cacti and their characteristics
Cacti are a group of plants that are known for their unique and distinctive features, such as thick and fleshy stems, spines, and the ability to store water. They are native to the Americas and are adapted to survive in hot and dry conditions. Cacti come in a wide range of shapes, sizes, and colors, making them a popular choice for indoor and outdoor gardening.
List of popular cacti for east-facing balconies
- Christmas cactus (Schlumbergera)
- Golden Barrel Cactus (Echinocactus grusonii)
- Moon cactus (Gymnocalycium mihanovichii)
- Fishbone cactus (Epiphyllum anguliger)
- Star cactus (Astrophytum asterias)
Care instructions for cacti
- Watering: Cacti prefer infrequent watering, but deep watering when they do. Allow the soil to dry out before watering again.
- Lighting: Cacti require bright, indirect light. East-facing balconies are ideal for them.
- Soil: Cacti prefer well-draining soil with a mix of sand, perlite, and potting soil.
- Temperature: Cacti prefer warm temperatures between 60-90°F (15-32°C)
- Fertilizer: Fertilize cacti every 4-6 weeks during the growing season with a balanced cactus fertilizer.
- Pests and Diseases: Cacti are relatively hardy plants, but watch out for mealybugs, spider mites, and rot.
Note: It’s important to note that each cactus species have slightly different care requirements, it’s always a good idea to research the specific cactus you have or plan to have.
Description of vines and their characteristics
Vines are a type of plant that grows vertically, using supports such as walls, fences, or trellises to climb. They can add a lush, green touch to any space, and are perfect for adding a pop of color to an east-facing balcony. Vines come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, and can be either evergreen or deciduous.
Some popular vines for east-facing balconies include:
- English ivy – This classic vine is known for its deep green leaves and ability to climb walls and fences. It’s also great for ground cover.
- Boston ivy – This vine is known for its attractive, dark green leaves and its ability to change color in the fall.
- Honeysuckle – This vine is known for its fragrant flowers that bloom in the spring and summer.
- Trumpet vine – This vine is known for its trumpet-shaped flowers that come in a variety of colors, such as red, orange, and yellow.
Care Instructions for Vines:
- Make sure to provide support for your vine, such as a trellis or wall.
- Plant your vine in well-draining soil and make sure it gets enough water.
- Prune your vine regularly to control its growth and shape.
- Fertilize your vine with a balanced fertilizer during the growing season.
- Be mindful of the sunlight exposure, as some vines prefer more shade than others.
- Be aware of the hardiness zone of your area, as some vines are not suitable for certain climates.
Note: It is important to check the specific care instructions for the type of vine you select as different vine may have different care instructions.
Read More: 20 Examples Of Flowering Plants
6. Other Long-lasting Plants
Description of other long-lasting plants:
There are many other plants that can thrive on an east-facing balcony, despite the challenges of the environment. These plants are known for their durability and longevity, making them an ideal choice for those who want to add greenery to their balcony without having to spend a lot of time on maintenance.
List of popular other long-lasting plants for east-facing balconies:
- Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum) – Known for its air-purifying properties and tolerance for low light and dry conditions.
- Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata) – This plant is also known as “Mother-in-law’s tongue” and is tolerant of low light, high temperatures, and low humidity.
- Pothos (Epipremnum aureum) – This plant is known for its tolerance of low light and easy care.
- Cast-Iron Plant (Aspidistra elatior) – This plant is tolerant of low light, drought and humidity making it a great option for an east-facing balcony.
- ZZ Plant (Zamioculcas zamiifolia) – It is known to be tough and easy to care for, and it can survive in low light and dry conditions.
Care instructions for other long-lasting plants:
- These plants prefer well-draining soil, and they should be watered sparingly to avoid root rot.
- Keep them in a spot with bright, indirect light, and avoid direct sunlight, which can scorch the leaves.
- Keep an eye on humidity levels, as some of these plants may struggle in dry conditions.
- Be careful not to over-water or under-water them. Most of these plants are drought tolerant, but they still need some moisture to survive.
- Regularly remove dead or yellow leaves and debris to keep the plant healthy.
Note: It’s always good to do a research on the specific plant you have and read the care instructions as some plants might have specific needs.
Having plants with a long shelf-life on an east-facing balcony is beneficial because they are able to withstand the bright morning sunlight and heat that the balcony may receive. Additionally, these plants require less maintenance and can thrive with minimal watering, making them perfect for those who are busy or away from home often.
When selecting plants for an east-facing balcony, it is important to consider the amount of sunlight and heat the balcony receives, as well as the level of maintenance you are willing to provide. Succulents, ferns, herbs, cacti, and vines are all excellent choices for east-facing balconies, as they are able to thrive in bright sunlight and require minimal watering. Additionally, it is also good to consider the size of your balcony and select plants that fit the space. Make sure to also research on the best care instructions for each plant you decide to bring home.
How often do low maintenance and long-lasting plants need to be watered?
The frequency of watering will vary depending on the specific plant and the conditions on your balcony. In general, succulents and cacti will require less watering than ferns and herbs. It’s important to research the watering needs of each specific plant and monitor the soil moisture to ensure they are getting the right amount of water.
Can low maintenance and long-lasting plants be grown in pots or do they need to be planted in the ground?
Low maintenance and long-lasting plants can be grown in pots or planted in the ground. It’s important to select pots that have drainage holes and use well-draining soil to ensure proper drainage.
What are some tips for keeping low maintenance and long-lasting plants healthy on an east-facing balcony?
Some tips for keeping low maintenance and long-lasting plants healthy on an east-facing balcony include ensuring proper drainage, selecting the right pot size, and monitoring the soil moisture. Additionally, it’s also important to research the specific care needs of each plant and provide them with the proper amount of sunlight and water.
How can I protect my low maintenance and long-lasting plants from extreme heat on an east-facing balcony?
To protect your low maintenance and long-lasting plants from extreme heat on an east-facing balcony, you can use shading methods such as an umbrella or a shade cloth. You can also move the plants to a shaded area during the hottest part of the day. Additionally, it’s important to ensure that the plants have access to good ventilation, and that they are not overcrowded.
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