When I sit under my parasol these days, at a pleasant 25 degrees, with colors, rustling leaves and birds chirping around me, I think: it could stay like this. Then I forget for a brief moment that summers are becoming more unpredictable, mainly due to climate change. Periods of heat and drought are increasing and alternating with heavy rainfall and storms. The weather changes come quickly and violently. Of course, this also has an impact on our gardens in the city, whether on the ground or, like mine, on the roof.
In this blog post I would like to give you tips on how you can help your urban garden cope better with these fluctuations.
Shade and protection, also for your plants
One of the most important tips is to keep the potting soil covered - whether in a pot or in a bed. Why? This quickly becomes clear when you think about what happens if you expose yourself naked to the full sun or wind and rain for a long time. Naked, you are vulnerable and defenseless and would need real superpowers to survive for a long time.
The earth is exactly the same. When the weather conditions become extreme, she needs protection. In summer, for example, mixed planting can do this well - ideally with flowers, herbs, trees and vegetables. This also works well on a smaller scale in a pot or planter. For this reason, my roof garden now always has at least two plants growing in one pot.
Now you can say: The plants are robbing each other of food!? That's only partly true. For example, if you sow herbs or wildflowers around a cucumber , it works great. The former are less hungry than vegetables. I therefore consciously recommend becoming more experimental here. Plants benefit from each other in many combinations, not just in terms of the natural shading of the earth. Nasturtiums, for example, are very popular with aphids. If you sow these around your tomato plants , the tomatoes are usually spared from the lice.
Shading also works well in a pot garden if you put several pots together in which plants grow at different heights. Of course, you should make sure that all plants receive enough sunlight. However, my experience here is that the sun is now so strong in the summer months that even plants with a strong need for light, such as eggplants or peppers, like to grow in light shade.
In addition to naturally shading the soil from neighboring plants, I highly recommend mulching the soil. Mulching means adding a protective layer of natural organic materials to the surface of the soil. You can find out how this works and what exactly you can use in my last blog article .
Save water and use it cleverly, not just during the holiday season
Saving water is becoming increasingly important. Especially in city gardens, you often don't have a garden water connection and use valuable drinking water for watering. That's why I collect drinking water wherever I can in the household so that I can later use it to water my plants. I use unsalted water that is left over from washing vegetables or salad, for example, for watering. I also installed a water-saving irrigation system on the roof terrace. If that's too expensive for you, I recommend watering in a water-saving manner with clay cones or ollas in pots and incorporating water-storing organic material such as sheep's wool into the soil when planting. With this support, you can even leave your plants alone for a long weekend without watering supervision.
Also, see if you can collect some rainwater through a branch in your gutter. I also collect a valuable amount of irrigation water on my roof terrace. I use an old half wine barrel as a mini rain barrel. A waterproof box, a watering can or a large bucket will also work.
Reseed, fertilize, enjoy until autumn
If the first gaps appear in the balcony box in the summer after harvesting radishes, spinach, garlic, etc., don't leave them empty. Either you have wisely already preferred young plants that you can now plant in the gaps. Or you can simply reseed directly. My sowing and planting calendar can be a valuable help to you. Here you will find an overview of my favorite plants that I sow throughout the year. This not only helps to close the gaps in the bed, but also gives you flowering joy and a small second harvest later in the year. Great seed sets for this include radishes for the whole year , edible flowers , climate-resistant herbs for the windowsill or balcony box vegetables .
If you are still unsure and would like a very individual combination of flowers, vegetables and herbs for the second sowing, then please write to me here . In addition to my “ Your Garden City Garden Advice ”, I also always offer individual FAQ lessons. Here we look at your specific situation and think together about how you can get your city garden ready for the second half of the year.
On Instagram and Facebook I also invite you to accompany me in my gardening season. Feel free to link me if you sow, plant or otherwise want to support me. I am always very happy to see what emerges and grows from the Sprießerie products.
BRAND NEW I am also offering workshops for companies, schools, daycare centers etc. or I can help you create a community garden. You can also find all information about this on my website .
No matter how and where, I look forward to hearing from you and wish you a lot of fun with urban gardening and always enough time to enjoy it.
- Seeds for young and old