There are some challenges when finding plants for a windy balcony. The biggest is finding ones that either won’t blow over or will survive particularly windy conditions.
The same is true, to an extent, for plant pots, although they can help combat windy conditions.
In this article, we’ll go over the best plants for a windy balcony and suggest some of the most suitable pots for keeping your plants in place.
When picking plants for a windy balcony, consider the following:
- Flexibility – plenty of plants can deal fine with wind if they’re flexible enough
- Hardiness Zone – the plant should be suited to your zone
- Your needs – i.e. decoration, privacy, blocking wind, etc.
- Type of pot – we’ll discuss this in more depth, but a sturdy, heavy pot will help keep your plants in place
1. Cypress – Best for wind blocking
Cypress trees are bushy and evergreen and do well in windy conditions. They’re pretty good at blocking wind thanks to their dense foliage. You can grow them in pots, too, although they’ll be pretty large.
2. Bamboo – Best for privacy
Bamboo is incredibly flexible, meaning it’ll just bend in the wind. There are plenty of bamboo varieties that’ll work well in all climates for different privacy needs. We’ve written at length about bamboo and privacy, so check out our other articles.
3. Ornamental grasses – Best for sound
Ornamental grasses sound amazing when the wind blows through them. As you might imagine, they’ll take very little damage, even in difficult conditions, making them one of the best plants for a windy balcony. You can check out our article on tall grasses to see which would work best for you.
4. Geranium – Best for flowers
Geraniums are surprisingly hardy and can withstand quite a bit of wind. They’ll work well in railing planters, providing you secure everything, of course. What’s more, they come in loads of colors, and insects love them.
5. Lavender – Best for scent
Like geraniums, lavender has no issue with wind. For best results, look for a small, bushy variety so it stays nice and compact. In a planter on the ground, there’s very little that could go wrong.
A bonus – lavender will help make your balcony smell great.
6. Acer – Best for decoration
Acer (also known as Japanese Maple) is a great decorative tree that thrives in pots. It’s native to mountainous regions, so wind isn’t a problem. To keep the plant healthy, you’ll probably want to prune it so it’s relatively compact. This will reduce the chances of branches snapping off.
7. Hydrangea – Best for a natural windbreak
If cypress trees are too boring for your tastes, hydrangeas are a good alternative. They’re bushy shrubs that can block as much as 70% of the prevailing wind. Also, you can change the colors of the flowers by making the soil acid or alkaline!
Now that we’ve got an idea of some of the best plants for windy balconies, let’s look at what we can put them in. These pots and planters are just suggestions, but they should give you an idea of what to look for and why.
You can get some pretty massive wood planters (such as this). For best results, look for old whisky and wine barrels, which are perfect when cut in half. Filled with soil, they’ll be pretty heavy.
Generally, they’re a bit shallower than other options, so things like Acer and hydrangeas would be best.
There’s probably not much to say about why stone planters work on windy balconies. More than anything, they’re heavy, but they’ll also resist falling over. Small ones (like this) will be great for little plants like lavender and geranium.
A railing planter won’t always be the best option on a windy balcony. If the wind blows in the right direction, it could knock the planter off. However, if you take additional steps to secure it in place, it should be fine.
What plastic pots lack in weight they make up for in durability. Aim for shallow or skinny pots to reduce their wind resistance. Also, stay away from plants like cypress that are bushy, as they could fall over. Instead, ornamental grasses should be fine.
Hopefully, you can now go out and pick the best plants for a windy balcony. The most important thing is to factor in your climate, but you’ll generally want to aim for plants from arid climates if you want them to be resilient.