Summer planting: The best summer flowers for the balcony
For many balcony gardeners, a beautiful summer planting means one thing above all: Flowers with many colourful blossoms, which bloom in the best case from May through August to September. The problem: Not every summer flower fits on every balcony. We tell you which summer flowers are suitable for sun, partial shade, or shade; which summer plantings are hardy; and how The Plant Box can help you find the summer flowers that go best together right away.
Which summer flowers grow on the balcony?
The plants whose flowers bloom in the summer months are primarily referred to as summer flowers. These are often comparatively sensitive plants, which provide flowers on your balcony in summer, but are also very sensitive to frost and therefore only survive on your balcony for a year or two. But there are also some summer flowers that are winter-hardy or perennial. Many of the colourful summer flowers are not only a visual highlight, but also attract bees, bumblebees, butterflies, and other insects.
Hardy or winter-hardy perennials (e.g. coneflowers) are often counted among the summer flowers or plants - these go back over the winter and bloom again the following year. The summer plants for the balcony can be roughly divided into the following categories:
Annual Summer Flowers & Plants: Once planted in spring or late fall of the previous year, annual summer flowers bloom throughout the summer into the fall months. Since they are very sensitive to frost, they only survive one summer in the balcony box outside. Well-known examples of annual summer flowers are:
- Magnificent Lobelia
Biennial summer flowers & plants: These flowers and balcony plants can be planted in summer between June and August. Biennial means that by autumn they will already be developing into so-called "leaf rosettes", and thus survive the winter before starting to flower at the end of the following spring. The classic biennial summer flowers include:
Winter-hardy summer flowers and plants: Perennials such as peonies are part of this category. They survive the winter and bloom every year with good care. Other classics among the perennial or winter-hardy summer flowers are hydrangeas, fuchsias, and carnations. The dahlia is one of the perennial summer flowers: In order to overwinter it, its bulb must be dug up in autumn and buried again in spring.
South-facing balcony: summer flowers in the sun
A south-facing balcony can be a real highlight in summer. However, the sun becomes a risk for many summer flowers and plants. Additional watering is usually not enough - many summer flowers on the balcony are simply not made for the constant sun and heat. South-facing balconies are therefore often used in summer for herbs (e.g. sage, thyme, chives, basil) or vegetables that need sun (e.g. tomatoes, peppers, chili). Of course, there are also a whole range of summer flowers that are ideal for a sunny spot.
10 summer flowers for balconies with sun:
- magic bell
- Spanish Daisies
- shrub daisy
- cape daisy
- hussar head
- Black-eyed Susan
East & west balconies: summer flowers in the semi-shade
Many experienced gardeners believe that anyone who wants to plant balcony plants facing east or west in summer has hit the jackpot: The change of sun and shade phases is ideal for many different summer plantings - also because the summer flowers in partial shade are spared long exposure to the strong midday sun.
10 summer flowers for balconies with partial shade:
- edging lobelia
- Busy Lizzie
- hanging geraniums
North balcony: summer flowers in the shade
A myth that still hangs around: Colourful, blooming summer flowers and shady balconies are mutually exclusive. Of course that's not true - even with a north-facing balcony you still have a wide selection of summer flowers and plants that create a nice summer atmosphere. Most of the summer flowers that do well in the shade will also do well in partial shade. The following summer flowers do well without direct sun:
10 summer flowers for balconies with shade:
- heartleaf lillies
- snowflake flower
- coloured nettles
- elf mirror
- crying heart
How do I properly care for the summer planting on the balcony?
Many of the summer flowers and plants have their origin in tropical areas or in Mediterranean countries - this makes them very resistant to heat, but they need all the more water and light. A balcony box with a water reservoir can therefore be useful to provide the summer planting with sufficient watering safely and easily.
Especially for your summer flowers in the sun on the south-facing balcony - but also in general with the high temperatures in summer - you should also adjust your watering behavior a little. This means it is best to always water your flowers in the morning when it is still reasonably cool outside. In this way you can be sure that a large part of the irrigation water does not evaporate directly, and your summer flowers on the balcony are sufficiently supplied even on the hottest days. If you water too late in the evening, the roots may stay too wet at night and rot as a result. You should definitely avoid watering during the midday sun, as the strong sunlight can cause the leaves to burn under the water droplets. This problem is also known as the "magnifying glass effect".
When can you plant summer flowers on the balcony?
May is the ideal time for summer planting on the balcony. Since summer flowers are very sensitive to night frost, you should definitely wait until the frosts are over before planting your balcony box. In harsh climes, the cold nights can drag on into June. You can protect your summer flowers from frost on the balcony with the help of jute bags, bubble wrap, or fleece.
Which planters are suitable for summer planting on the balcony?
When choosing planters for summer planting on the balcony, you have a variety of options, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. If you want to use tubs for your summer flowers, they can be made of heavier materials such as terracotta or concrete. This reduces the risk of the vessels falling over. It is better to use plastic or other light material for balcony boxes or hanging baskets.
In order to guarantee the perfect growth of your balcony plants, it is important that both the tub and the balcony box have enough holes in the bottom. This ensures that there is no waterlogging, as excess water can easily drain away. Plant pots on the balcony floor should be on feet to ensure adequate air circulation.
You don't have to buy new window boxes, pots, and tubs for your summer planting every year - you can reuse your planters from previous years. Important: They must be thoroughly cleaned before use so that they are not only free of soil but also of fungal spores or germs.
What soil and fertilizer do my summer flowers need?
Which soil and which fertilizer you should use for your balcony planting for the summer mainly depends on what and where you want to plant. For flower boxes only, you should use a long-term fertilizer that provides your plants with the right basic care. Even if it's called a long-term fertilizer, its effect is not sufficient for the entire season. You have to fertilize your plants occasionally over the summer.
Normal garden soil is perfectly adequate as a substrate for most vegetables and herbs. You just want to make sure it's organic garden soil that's peat-free. For some plants, such as rhododendrons and cacti, it can make sense to use special soil to provide the plants with all the nutrients they need for optimal growth.
What equipment do I need for summer planting on the balcony?
Once you've timed your summer planting and prepared the containers, you can start planting your summer flowers in their new homes. So that this works quickly and easily, you should have the following material ready:
- expanded clay or other material for drainage
- shards of clay to cover the drain hole
- fleece to cover the drainage layer
- watering can
- planting trowel
- flowers or plants
How do I prepare my balcony box for summer planting?
To create the perfect environment for your summer plants to grow optimally in window boxes, you should prepare your boxes before planting. You should take the following steps into account:
- First you should drill drainage holes in closed plastic boxes to avoid waterlogging. A drainage layer of expanded clay should also be added if the box does not have a water reservoir.
- Then the balcony box is loosely filled to a third with potting soil - the soil should be able to store irrigation water well.
- Before the summer flowers can be planted, the seed pot must be dipped in water until no more air bubbles are visible.
- In the next step, the plants are removed from the nursery pot and the roots are loosened.
- Then it's time to plant: make sure that there is always at least a hand's breadth between large flowers.
- In the balcony box, the plants should be placed just as deep in the ground as in the nursery pot.
- At the end, the root balls are filled with soil and lightly pressed.
Which summer plants go together on the balcony?
Sooner or later, every hobby gardener is faced with the question of which of the summer flowers and plants go well together, both visually and in terms of care, and should be placed in a common balcony box. We want to do the research for you; at The Plant Box you will find a wide selection of creative, ready-made summer plantings for your balcony boxes.
The arrangements have been put together by us personally and are therefore perfectly adapted to the different conditions on sunny, partially-shaded, or shaded balconies. You can order our summer plantings either individually or directly together with our modern balcony box (Plant Box) - as soon as you have received your order, you only have to put them in the balcony box, and you can look forward to the new flowers after just a short time. You save yourself the long research, and instead you can simply select the planting that you like best directly in our shop .
Creative summer plantings from The Plant Box:
- creative, ready-arranged summer plantings for your balcony
- bee-friendly and blooming summer flowers from regional cultivation
- Our Plant Box: modern balcony box made from 100% recycled vegetable oils (made near Berlin)
- Planting with peat-free soil and without chemical fertilizers
Unfortunately, since summer doesn't last forever, we'll provide your balcony with fresh ideas afterwards. Our refills provide you with the right plants and flowers for every season - as individual planting or as a convenient Plant Lover Club membership .