When we first started looking for a house – we pictured a nice two storied structure, that had a functional floor plan, design aesthetics and most importantly a patch of green. We also did find one such house, so what stopped us from buying it then? Well for one we were really keen on an independent house and this was actually the ground floor of an apartment and the more important reason being the patch of green was so big (around 1000sq.ft was garden alone) that it doubled our requirement of cash! Our budget would simply not allow it 😦 My husband even to this day gets starry eyed when we talk about that beautiful house.
Photo Credit : http://www.panoramio.com/photo/50185156
So what we eventually found within our budget is a pretty good individual house unit of about 1456 sqft of land and 2450 sqft of built up space. The problem – no provision for a garden what-so-ever. We love greenery, which is one reason we love our city Bangalore with its many parks, lakes and green cover even today. So we decided to figure a way to infuse some green in our home and we made a list of the areas around the house where we could do this ; the parking area, the balconies and the terrace. The concept of terrace gardening has been something that we have been interested in for quite some time now. Our only concern however was to not compromise on our building life and strength due to weight and water leakage issues. The even bigger issue being, since we travel frequently, we need to install an automatic watering system (especially for the scorching summers), so that we don’t get back to a dry and burnt up garden. But the benefits of a terrace garden far outweigh the cons.
Photo Credit : 66squarefeet.blogspot.com
So what is so great about having your patch of green, higher up?
1. The best reason to look at creating a terrace garden is to beat the summer heat. According to terracegarden.in, this arrangement can insulate the house from getting overheated. Brings down internal temperature in the house and reduces your air-conditioning costs. In our case with the master bedroom being right beneath the terrace, this will provide a big relief in summers!
2. It can also add as a buffer for troubling outdoor noises and reduce the effect depending on the materials used for the terrace garden.
3. It builds a positive ecology around the house, more oxygen, less pollution and an open invite to birds and butterflies. What better way to spend the evening than right here.
Photo Credit : mkcorporation.co.in
4. You can grow your own veggies and herbs. Terrace gardening is not only about ornamental plants, you can also grow vegetables, herbs and other produce for your cooking. Bangaloreans are taking the trend of terrace and organic gardening seriously, cooking from their own produce. Groups such as https://www.facebook.com/groups/OrganicTerraceGardening/ encourage and help newcomers get started and is a great source of know-how.
5. It looks great, nothing can add more beauty and joy to a house than a well maintained garden. It can serve as a great place to entertain guests and host parties.
6. Relaxation, gardening can be a form of meditation and is deeply relaxing for the mind and body. Also there is no greater pleasure than to see what you plant, grow and bear fruits and flowers 🙂
7. And unlike what is conventionally considered terrace gardening, i.e. preparing the terrace floor with soil and planting directly in this base, you can also have plants in different shapes and sizes of pots or containers to put together your own terrace garden. Adding decorative elements like stones, garden accessories and lighting can make the place unique. Growing out of containers can also help address your concerns of water seepage and structural damage. Besides it is good exercise to individually water the plants 🙂
Photo Credit : http://www.homesii.com
The garden accessories available in stores both online and offline ranging from attractive plant holders, fun statues, attractive terracotta decor, etc only make the process of terrace gardening even more exciting. As for myself, I can’t wait to get started on my terrace garden project this weekend!