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What to do with ground floor balcony?

(4 Posts)
Applesauce29 Thu 18-Jun-15 09:46:19

So ladies, I need some ideas. I have a ground floor flat with a balcony / patio area sectioned off by railings around 1m tall. The flat is on a public path, so have lots of joggers and dog walkers walking along. I'd like to create a nice area to sit out and have a drink / dinner. East facing, so only get light in the mornings.

We currently have a small bistro table set, that needs re-painting, and a couple of pots with azaleas (planted two years ago but should come back to life again if I top them up with soil and start watering). Due to being in quite a socially divided area, we have to keep the table and chairs locked to the railing, which makes it inconvenient to unlock and just sit out with a coffee when my baby is napping (we had a BBQ, which was unlocked, and some teenagers apparently threw it into the river). Neighbours have a standard large picnic table that looks good, so I could order one from B&Q (£42 + £20 delivery), but would like some ideas for alternatives for large cheap furniture that I can leave out that can't be easily stolen / lifted over railings and throw in the river the other side of path.

Also, if anyone has ideas for making the area baby friendly for 10 month old who's not yet walking, that would be great. No outdoor storage area, so would need to be something that could be just left outside. Area is small brick pathway type material (with massive weed problem, so although I like the fake grass idea, think it would be too expensive and too much of a hassle to lay and maintain).

Thanks for reading.

AnulTheMagnificent Sun 21-Jun-15 23:38:17

Rather than getting larger furniture which may well get stolen (have known of areas where people go round with vans and just load people's garden stuff into the back and drive off) you could get folding furniture and take it inside when not in use. Would double up as spares indoors if you had extra guests for dinner.

funnyperson Mon 22-Jun-15 02:25:41

You have a small east facing brick paved patio with low railings next to a public path. Your little one will be mobile by the time we have blinked.

Your bistro set sounds fine, I wouldn't buy any more furniture, except something for the toddler to sit on perhaps.

Plants need to be thornless and not poisonous.

I would be tempted to put up trellis to increase the height of your boundary and provide screening and protection from passers by and grow evergreen stuff up it like clematis avalanche, jasmine, bamboo: they can be planted in large pots or troughs at the base of the boundary. Lavender, sage and oregano in pots don't need much watering and smell nice. Marigolds, nasturtiums and pansies are cheap and cheerful and easy to grow and flower for ages. Hydrangeas flower in late summer and do well in pots too and last for ages.

Check the distance between the railings so that little heads can't get stuck.

Applesauce29 Mon 22-Jun-15 13:52:33

Thanks for the suggestions. I never thought about LO's head getting stuck. Will have to check that one!

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