A Special Rose Garden:
On your Deck or Balcony


Can you really grow roses on your balcony? Why, of course… the perfect place for a container garden. In fact, this type of rose garden is the only way to grow roses that are not planted directly into the ground. Not only are they convenient, but this type of garden is also transportable. And nothing is more striking to passers-by than a balcony filled with an abundance of roses.


Choosing the Right Container


There are some do’s and don’ts, so let’s examine the choices; wooden, plastic, terra cotta or ceramic are all ideal for your container garden. We must pay attention to drainage holes which means that as appealing as the antique milk jug is, it will not work unless you are willing to drill holes in the bottom.


Size is another consideration; about 14 to 16 inches in diameter and 20 inches deep – roses love lots of room to grow. Also, do not put a pot with drainage holes inside of a decorative pot without holes; this will drown your rose plants in a hurry. Wooden blocks or bricks underneath your container will avoid plants from ever sitting in water.


Okay – now is the time to go shopping for rose plants, and some enjoy container life more than others. Here are some plants to consider.


Floribunda: these plants produce more than 25 roses per stem! They also come in a number of different colors including red, lavender, pink, yellow, white and orange.


Miniatures: these tiny roses are dainty and delicate. They grow quite contentedly inside or outside.


Patio Roses: true to their name, these roses are happiest when placed inside of a container on a patio. They are quite stunning with dark green leaves and a blush of colorful flowers. My favorite is Pink Pollyanna.


Lastly, try to purchase your soil from a greenhouse or nursery rather than from a local store – greenhouse soil is free of pests and ideal for growing roses. It is also filled with proper rose nutrients. Hopefully your balcony or patio has plenty of direct morning sun and noon sunlight. Roses are sun-seekers. You may notice that some of your rose plants are leaning towards the sunlight too much – this means it’s time to rotate your containers. In northern states it’s best to bring your containers inside for the winter months.


Follow all these steps and your patio will be blooming with flowers and smelling like a rose no matter what location you live in.


Esther B. Smith, author

Container roses are what I grow best on my balcony, and they certainly make me a "show off" with neighbors. Try your hand at this and you will delight in spending a quiet hour there.