Spring time is plant time! But when is the best moment to add greenery to the balcony?

The sun is gaining strength and balcony season is just around the corner. But be careful: not every plant can tolerate spring frosts.

Spring beckons with its first warm rays of sunshine and many people are already itching to fill their balconies with vibrant greenery. But nature has its own rules and if you want to give your plants a good start, you should take the phases of spring and the associated weather conditions into account.

The Ice Saints, which take place in mid-May, are a good indicator of when the right time is to plant on the balcony. Until then, night frosts can occur again and again, which can damage young and frost-sensitive plants.

If you don’t want to wait until mid-May, you can take precautionary frost protection measures such as covering the plants with fleece or concentrate on winter-hardy plants that can withstand colder temperatures.

For those who want a colorful display of flowers, it is advisable to be patient and only bring the plants outside after the last risk of frost.

The selection of plants for your balcony depends on various factors – this includes not only personal preferences, but also the lighting conditions and the spatial conditions of the balcony.

For example, geraniums (Pelargonium), petunias or Cape baskets (Osteospermum) are a good choice for sunny balconies, as they need a lot of light and warmth to develop their full blooms.

Fuchsias, busy lilies (impatiens) and hydrangeas feel at home in shady areas. Herbs such as thyme, sage, rosemary and lavender can also be cultivated well on the balcony. These not only useful but also decorative plants prefer nutrient-poor and rather dry soil.

Vertically growing fruit varieties such as certain espaliered fruit trees are also an interesting option for the edible balcony garden. They bring freshness and are space-saving at the same time. It is important to pay attention to the right soil and good drainage to avoid waterlogging.

Temperatures play a crucial role when choosing balcony plants. While some plants such as pansies and primroses can be planted early in the year as they can cope with cooler temperatures, summer flowers such as begonias and daisies need warmer conditions and should only be taken outside after the ice saints.

Newly purchased plants that have previously only experienced the climate of a greenhouse must slowly become accustomed to the cooler and drier outside air. This means that they should initially only be placed on the balcony during the day and protected from wind and direct sun.

After a few days of acclimatization, they can then move to their final location. This measure prevents shock caused by the temperature change and enables the plants to grow vigorously and healthily throughout the summer.

Not every plant is suitable for planting on the balcony. Large trees such as some types of fruit trees are often unsuitable because of their size and impact on the appearance of the building. The landlord’s consent should also be obtained beforehand for climbing plants such as ivy, as they can grow beyond the balcony boundaries and damage facades.

Invasive plant species that are banned in the EU are completely unsuitable. These include, for example, the Andean pampas grass (Cortaderia jubata) and the Japanese climbing fern (Lygodium japonicum). These plants can displace native species and affect biodiversity.

If you are unsure about which plants are suitable, you should seek professional advice or use proven balcony plants such as petunias, fuchsias or herbs.