How to Create a Rooftop Herb Garden

If you live in the city, you may find yourself having a limited amount of space for gardening, especially if you’ve filled up your indoor space with houseplants. If that’s the case, consider creating a roof-deck herb garden.

It’s a creative and relatively easy way to expand your space, helping you make the most out of your home. Here’s how you can create a roof-deck herb garden.

Get Permitted

Before you start making your roof-deck herb garden, know the local rules as some states or counties prohibit building one or require a permit for it. Additionally, it’s best to ask your landlord or the property owner if it’s allowed in the space, just like how’d you ask if installing home audio systems to your home is permitted. It’s best to do these technical things out-of-the-way first to avoid getting in trouble with the law—or your landlord.

Consider Wind and Water

Keep in mind that roof-deck gardens will be windier than a ‘normal’ garden. That’s why you need to add windbreaks to your garden design. You can use a trellis or lattice windbreaks for light decorative and functional pieces—and solid windbreaks are more likely to get knocked down by high winds. Finally, consider how you’re going to get water to your roof-deck garden as lugging heavy buckets of water to the roof isn’t a practical method to do long-term. Consider having a water storage system or have an automatic watering system built-in on your roof.

The Quality and Quantity of Soil

herbs with soil

Soil is a vital element of any roof-deck herb garden as the growing conditions are drastically different from what you’d encounter for regular gardens. It’s best to use soil made to be used for green roof-decks as these are lightweight, which is crucial for the rooftop structure. The amount of soil you’ll need depends on the size of your garden.

DIY Planters

After choosing the best soil for your plants, it’s time to get planters. Although you can always buy ones from your nearest gardening stores, it’s best if you make DIY versions. You can nearly use anything for this, ranging from old tubs to wood, allowing you to make a decent flower bed in your roof-deck garden.

Choose the Herbs Wisely

Herbs are ideal for roof-deck gardens as they’re relatively easy to grow and don’t require constant attention. The best herbs to dry are tender ones, such as basil, parsley, mint, cilantro, and dill, as they grow well in balcony pots. You can also grow thyme and rosemary—provided that you have a spacious roof-deck as they grow slower and don’t produce as much in smaller spaces.

After choosing what to plant, rearrange your planters accordingly, add a bench or a couple of chairs, and sit back, relax, and watch your garden grow.

A rooftop garden can be an oasis in an urban setting, providing you with privacy, fresh air amidst the bustling city, and a destressing area—and following the steps mentioned can help you build your own in no time.

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