Got a green thumb, but not a lot of room? Renters who enjoy gardening don’t have to hang up their pruning shears just because they don’t have a yard. Patio gardening is a great way to keep your horticultural hobby alive, and there’s a thriving online community dedicated to sharing tricks, tips, and styles. Here are 10 of the best blogs for the patio botanist.
Apartment Therapy’s gardening section is much like the rest of the site: filled with tasteful photographs of clean, mid-century modern apartments and succulents in beautiful bowls. Posts are well-written and informative, with titles like “How to Save Your Struggling Houseplants from Satanic Spider Mites.”
Fern Richardson (amazingly, that’s her real name) writes this funny, approachable blog from Southern California, where she maintains a 50-square-foot garden in her condo. A master gardener and a graphic designer, Fern’s writing style is clear and personable. The blog is attractive and intuitive, without looking too slick or corporate.
You Grow Girl is the project of ecologist and author Gayla Trail, who’s written several books (You Grow Girl: The Groundbreaking Guide to Gardening came out with Simon and Schuster in 2005) about urban gardening. Her blog is focused on organic, urban gardening, and Trail’s perspective is lively, intelligent, and deeply empathetic. Read her blog for killer gardening tips with a feminist bent.
Mother Earth News’s organic gardening blog is a community effort, focused on sustainable growing practices. It’s not necessarily focused on patio gardening, but many of the straightforward, informative posts are geared toward urban gardeners with cramped spaces.
Pith and Vigor is an online magazine dedicated to gardening and travel. It’s definitely on the “gardening porn” end of the spectrum, with gorgeous photographs of both DIY projects and gardens from around the world. But it doesn’t skimp on substance, either — the site’s container gardening section is full of helpful tips, as are the interviews with prominent figures in the gardening world.
This blog offers helpful tips for the city-dwelling gardener, but it also aims to keep readers up to date with contemporary trends in ecological design. The site is easy to use and updated often, and posts are accompanied by helpful pictures.
It’s a little younger than some of the other blogs on this list, but if the last few months are any indication, Urban Organic Gardener is a lively site, with plenty of new content updated daily. It’s a great source for news about urban gardens around the country, and its pages dedicated to DIY projects and fire escape gardens are helpful. (Hopefully there will eventually be more of them.)
Patio of Pots seems to be defunct, but its two-year run from 2012 to 2014 is still a useful repository of tips for patio gardeners. The blog followed one Denver-area patio garden through the seasons, giving updates in real time about the garden’s progress — along with helpful advice about what worked and what didn’t.
While not devoted solely to patio gardens, Creative Vegetable Gardener is a trusty resource for all things horticultural. From cut flowers to seeds to when you’re supposed to get your winter vegetables in the ground, this blog has you covered. Wisconsin-based Megan Cain has a friendly tone and a wealth of knowledge that will help any gardener, no matter how small or large the plot.
A Way to Garden’s motto is “horticultural how-to and woo-woo,” and even a cursory glance at the site’s offerings — posts on baling hay, ticks, and botanical Latin — reveals the site’s addictive mixture of informative content and whimsy. Creator Margaret Roach is an acclaimed author, podcast host, and organic gardener, and her site bears the expertise of over 25 years in the business. (Plus, the recipes are excellent.)