Gardening Tips for Renters
Want to bring more green to your house or apartment? Using a few easy, inexpensive techniques, The Horticult shows how you can garden like you own the place -- without risking your security deposit. You don't have to own your home to create a garden that reflects your personal style. Grow your favorite plants and create an inspired landscape -- or patio, interior, or balcony -- using these fun, low-commitment methods. (Although you might want to check with your landlord about the larger projects!) And if you move, you can take it all with you. These 10 tips for renters will give your garden a new lease on life.
Everything In This Slideshow
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Planters are a renter's best friend. Today you'll find a wide variety of planters to fit every aesthetic, including modern, ornate, and eclectic. Even that largest of planters, the raised bed, can be made portable.
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Pick Your Plants Wisely
Epiphyllums (a type of flowering cactus) and wax plants (aka hoyas) are great for renters because they are slow-growing, long-lived plants that thrive in small containers and are adaptable to different lighting conditions and an eventual move. Succulents are another good option for sunnier outdoor locations; they, too, can do well in compact containers. Air plants, meanwhile, let you skip containers altogether, but be sure to place them in well-ventilated spots and soak or spritz regularly.
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Flex Your PEX
Moving or adding a hose connection -- or even setting up an outdoor shower! -- no longer requires hard piping. Flexible PEX systems allow you to easily extend your garden hose connections to a more convenient location in your garden. The whole system can be easily disconnected and relocated.
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Don’t Be Afraid to Irrigate
Drip irrigation systems are inexpensive and can play a key role in meeting the constant needs of your plants. Flexible 1/2-inch mains with 1/4-inch branch emitter tubing are easily installed above-ground in your garden. They can later be reused and relocated.
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Reimagine Your Boundaries
On the fence about your fence? You don’t have to own the place to add style to your borders. Cover an offensive fence with your own cedar or redwood boards. Then you can mount vertical gardening pockets for more leafy vibrancy.
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Be Comfortable on Your Home Turf
No longer taboo, artificial turf can make impressive outdoor area rugs. Find high-quality artificial grass in a wide variety in textures and colors. It can easily be cut into the dimensions of your choosing and repurposed for any future outdoor spaces.
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Pavers Aren’t Permanent
Pavers an efficient way (starting at around $1 a piece) to cover patches of dirt and weeds. Space them out and put moss between them for a lush look. They’re easy to clean and maintain, and you can pull them up any time.
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Don’t Go Off the Grid
Trellises don’t need to be permanently installed fixtures. Buy or build a free-standing trellis for your climbing vines; they’re a great way to go vertical and can act as a privacy screen if your neighbors are crowded a tad too closely.
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Pond-er a Wine Barrel
Chances are your landlord won’t let you dig a 3-foot-deep hole in the backyard. If you still want that water feature, wine or whiskey barrels are a great way to bring aquatic plants (like water lilies) to your garden.
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Build with Bolts
Build your larger project with bolts instead of nails. A bolted project can be disassembled, reassembled, and even reconfigured more easily. Even better, use stainless-steel bolts, which will stand the test of weather and time.
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Take a Rain Check
There are rain collection systems out there that don't require extensive modifications to your gutter system. Or, if you don't have gutters at all, consider lining buckets below your overhang to catch rainwater, the best water for your plants.