gardens small plant pot displayed in the window vintage color

How to Create Gardens in Small Spaces

Are you an urbanite and an apartment dweller but nurture love for greenery? Don’t let limited outdoor space restrain you from using your green thumb.  Create your own verdant patch in limited space with Container Gardening.

Grow fruits, veggies and flowering plants, trees and shrubs too in containers if you have less space for a garden.

  • Determine the space you can allocate for your home garden.
  • Decide whether you want a decorative garden or would like to grow herbs and food plants, and whether you want indoor or outdoor plants.
  • Create an illusion of extensive space by placing larger and brighter plants closer to view and muted colors and smaller plants farther away.
  • Cover boundaries like balcony railings or fences with plants that grow or peek over the fence.
  • Convert your balcony into a garden with container gardening.
  • Develop a vertical garden using window boxes or fence-mounted containers.
  • Create a focal point in every room where you can have a plant such as a center table, coffee tables or corners.


  • Source designer containers for indoor plants, placing elegant trays beneath them to prevent staining the floor.
  • For container gardening, it is best to leave out terracotta pots as they lose water quickly. Go for designer containers in glazed ceramic, plastic or resin pots.
  • Match the container and plant colors.

Plants that matter

  • For outdoor plants, choose a sunny windowsill and grow different herbs.
  • Bonsai is a good option to grow fruits. Dwarf varieties of fruits are beautiful and you can reap a rich harvest.
  • Decorate your patio with dwarf roses that will give a colorful bloom.
  • Assemble galvanized containers of various sizes where you can plant vegetables like peppers, tomatoes, strawberries, etc. This will have great visual appeal.
  • Plant-filled baskets can border your balcony railings.

What kind of plants can you choose?

  • Keep the plant’s mature size and growth rate in mind while selecting plants.
  • Choose small, compact and slow-growing plants, perennial flowering plants and shade-loving plants.
  • Plants like chilies, tomatoes, herbs and greens are easier to grow.
  • Choose low-care succulents that need less moisture for decorative varieties.
  • Plants should receive at least two to four hours of direct sunlight. Water plants only when soil is completely dry.
  • Climbers like jasmine are great container plants. Choose pots with good drainage, a trellis or post for support.

Move your garden around  

  • Create a mobile container garden, adding portable green space by using casters on galvanized metal containers.
  • Select containers of different sizes and add drainage holes. Measure distances and drill holes for attaching casters with bolts and screws. Place empty water bottles and fill 3/4th of the container. Fill with potting soil and set containers with tall plants at the back, low bushy ones in the front and trailing plants at the edges.

Wall planters

  • For small outdoor spaces, try multi-pocket wall planters where you can plant herbs like basil and thyme.
  • You can make your own multi-pocket fabric wall planters and place little pots and containers with plants.

Hanging gardens

  • Hang dainty baskets with an assortment of herbs like basil and thyme that add beauty to your balcony or living room and value to your kitchen.

Tiered beds

  • Even the smallest garden space can be enriched using tiered beds on your rooftop, patio or balcony. Adorn with easy-to-maintain garden plants.

Mix and match

  • Combine small plants that give different colored flowers and foliage of variegated textures in one container.


  • Paint empty tins cans with enamel paints and create cheery pictures along with your kids. Set colorful plants in them and decorate your children’s room’s windowsills.
  • Recycle old containers by filling them with potted plants and decorate your outdoor space. Remember to punch holes in them before planting.
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Swati Amar calls herself ‘the write person’ precisely because she claims her brain starts functioning only when her fingers dance over the computer keyboard. Gripped by an obsessive compulsion to write, her day is incomplete until she has ‘keyed’ in a few lines. Moving from counting money as an erstwhile banker in State Bank of India, Swati has been counting words for more than fifteen years. She has contributed copiously to various print and online publications in English and Tamil, numbering over 15K articles on varied subjects. Swati Amar swears allegiance to the Chennai Press Club and prides on her experience as a media entrepreneur and consultant, never losing a ‘write’ opportunity. Swati’s favorite pastime is to watch News on television, read, revel in melody, doodle and dawdle and follow the footsteps of global chefs when time permits. She believes that a good laugh peps up one’s life! And the write words too…