A Juliet Garden

I love the creativity real estate agents show when listing properties, and I wasn’t disappointed to hear that our balcony is affectionately called a ‘Juliet Balcony’. Presumably, its because there is just enough room for Juliet to stand on to call down to her lover. If he did manage to scale the 33 floors to get to her, they’d have to go inside for a cup of tea as there certainly is no room to sit on the balcony.

So with all of this in mind I was a little skeptical when my Juliet, Waveney, announced she wanted to have a garden on this somewhat riddiculous balcony! But she prevailed, and with significantly more support from her father than from me, we now have a garden on the 33rd floor!

There were a few hurdles to be … well, hurdled. The first being the issue of the sun generally falling in the same spot we like to stand when out on the balcony. “Fear ye not my Romeo, we shalt place the whole caboodle on wheels” said Juliet. And so it came to pass that the garden now rolls effortlessly between the bedroom and living room ends of the balcony depending on circumstances. The second problem was the 900mm solid balcony railing meaning the garden had to be 900mm high in order to get sun – done. It tends to get a bit windy that high up so some sort of barrier to protect the tender plants was needed which is where some perspex my brother had sculling about came in to play, and before the week was out we had a 300mm wide, 900mm tall, garden with a perspex wind barrier!

It was quite funny doing numerous trips through the lobby and past the reception, (the building is also a hotel), with some crazy looking pieces of construction, but it was all done successfully and this is the result…

Great ay! Not only that but there are obviously rubbish free genes in Waveney’s DNA as her father was able to use various pieces of scavenged and recycled material to construct the masterpiece! Being able to grow our own fresh herbs and greens makes it a lot easier as it can be quite difficult to find fresh herbs without a layer or two of plastic. Time will tell how the tomatoes will do as they may quite easily grow up and over the barrier which may prove interesting for pedestrians if it starts raining tomatoes on them! And as the happy couple settled back and admired their new garden Romeo turned to Juliet and asked, “Do you reckon bees will come up to the 33rd floor?”  To be continued…



  1. Gosset St Gals, November 8, 2010:

    Wowzer!! fantastic! sooo clever. Ha! to all those apartment dwellers that find excuses not to have gardens!

  2. Kathleen Turnbull, November 9, 2010:

    Wow, great to see the garden blooming so happily up above inner city Aucklanders. The growth appears very prolific and roll on Christmas and lots of salads! Well done, Juliet, your persistence has paid off, Maurice for bringing the plan into something tangible and of course Romeo for quiet support and trips up and down the lift! Smiles Kathleen

  3. Davina, November 10, 2010:

    You guys rock… You have proven how true it is, that growing your own food need not be an impossible task… Even in a high-rise. Big ups to you both… Oh and Maurice, I bet Eileen was in on it too. 