Maybe the balcony isn't so much "House Tour" as it is an item from the Summer Wish List. Our balcony, hidden by orange-striped curtains, was a mess. I had flower pots that only contained dirt, I had flower pots with a few weeds, and I had flower pots with cracked mason jars inside. Our table had no umbrella. The balcony was just not a welcoming area.
I really wanted to buy an umbrella, but Brad asked me to hold off until I got rid of the old flower pots and cleaned it up a little. I'm a fan of the Premack principle, so I agreed. However, I was at Ikea with my mom and sister when an umbrella was found. We were near the checkouts when my sister spotted the bin of $10 umbrellas. Yes, you read that right--$10. I was originally looking for a neutral, tan umbrella, but couldn't pass up a savings of $50-$60 over other umbrellas. I took home a striped umbrella that doesn't match anything. :) Our base, which isn't pictured, came from Target.
Once I got home, I immediately started in on the cleaning portion and was pleased with how quickly it went. I'm sure it's against the rules, but I dumped old dirt off the side of my balcony. Whoops. I threw away the mason jar pieces and, once cleaned, the old pots went into storage. That left us with three actively growing plants. One, not pictured, sits in the far right corner where we get the most shade. One is attached to the balcony rail and the last is sitting on a little table. You can see in the above picture that my terrariums were also hanging out on the balcony soaking up some sunshine.
I love that an easy twenty minutes or so was all that stood between me and a balcony I wanted to hang out on. I have been enjoying my breakfast outside on most days and, when the weather isn't unbearable, Brad and I have our lunch or dinner outside, too. The fit is a little tight, but we do have a fourth chair for the balcony that we can bring out if needed. For the future, I'd love to have more plants, but I have to do some research about what to grow, I think. I don't have a very green thumb.
Do you live in an apartment? What does your balcony look like? What do you grow?