It seems like I am going to rent for the rest of my life. I know that isn't really true, but we have rented for almost 8 years of marriage (moving almost every year!). I've always wanted to create the garden of my dreams, but know that it isn't 100% possible as the yard and property are not my own. I'm sure a lot of you are in the same pickle as I am! So here are a few tips for creating a garden that's close to the one in your dreams when you're a renter!
1. Maximize your space. If your patio is teeny tiny, or you don't even have the luxury of one, it's time to think about a vertical garden. This pallet garden takes up almost zero space, and would also create the illusion of a larger space as plants tend to make us forget where we are. See how to make your own vertical pallet garden over on Life On The Balcony
2. Create a garden ABOVE the ground. You don't need access to a large patch of dirt to build a garden patch. If you have the space (say you're renting a home with a small backyard), you can create a raised garden bed using some fancy wine boxes. This is the perfect way to have that vegetable garden you've always wanted. Bonus? It's portable so you can take it with you when you move! Yay for reaping the fruits of our labor!
3. Utilize those storage tubs. You can create a self-irrigating garden by building one out of those big storage tubs that are collecting dust. While it's a lot of work up front, the cleanup and lack of mess (and stress!) over the course of growing your plants will be worth it. Check out this step-by-step tutorial over on Craftster.org for making these types of gardens!
4. Use the windows! Sometimes you have access to nothing but those windows in your pad. Create a micro garden by planting assorted herbs in a miniature pots and arrange them in a row on each ledge. While this is usually done in the kitchen, I can see a gorgeous mini window garden adding to the Feng Shui of your living room.
5. Bring the trees inside! Trade out your fiddle leaf fig for a mini citrus tree! Orange trees are very affordable at big box home improvement stores like Lowes and Home Depot. They're still small and skinny so they won't take much room and they take time to grow before they become really large! If you start growing one now, you can enjoy all the fruits of your labor in a few short months. Bonus: your home will smell amazing and it will be so rewarding picking an orange at the drop-of-a-hat! Here is an amazing cheat sheet for growing your own citrus indoors!
6. Talk to the home owner. If you're set on having a big garden, but don't own your place outright, discuss it with the owner. We've worked with our landlords in the past and negotiated our way to a garden. You may even be able to swing a discount on your rent from the labor and work that goes in to building a foundation for a garden! The only downside: be prepared to say “farewell” to that garden when you move!