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Whether you live in the middle of a city or out in the countryside, a rooftop garden maximises your space and invites fresh air into your home. Here are 7 rooftop garden ideas to turn your house or apartment into a luscious, green getaway. 

1. Set a budget

As with any home renovation, you need to determine how much money you are willing to put into creating a new space. When deciding your budget, be sure to include the furniture, flooring, plants, and lighting, as well as any construction costs and support systems that will need to be put in place. Often before setting up a rooftop garden, you will need to get a permit and install appropriate beams, barriers, and supports.

2. Choose a theme and colour palette

What do you want your garden to feel like? Are you looking for a tranquil escape to read and work? Do you want a place where you and your family can have a dinner at dusk? Are you interested in hosting parties or sun tanning on the deck? Choosing a theme will help determine the look and feel of all of your other decisions.

A colour palette can also alter the space of your garden. One of our favourite rooftop garden ideas is choosing a neutral and earthy colour palette of beiges, browns, and creams. This will enhance the look of the greenery and make colourful flowers pop even more. An organic feel makes any rooftop garden feel peaceful and fresh. 

You may want to choose an accent colour too. Since you will likely be using your garden in the summer, decide on a light accent to give the space a warm vibe. (Although black is urban chic, it can get hot in the sun.)

3. Find the ideal flooring

Always pick the floor first. The floor is the “foundation” and creates the dynamic of the space. Although many choose a grass-covered rooftop, this can be hard to maintain.  Instead, opt for a wood floor or paver.
Wood tends to be a common theme in blogs of rooftop garden ideas because it stays cool in the sun and gives that organic feel. It’s also a light material, so it won’t put much pressure on your roof.

When choosing your flooring make sure it fits your budget, the climate, and your chosen theme. Don’t forget to waterproof it!

4. Choose your furniture

In keeping with your theme and purpose of the rooftop garden, decide which type of furniture would be best. If you’re planning to host dinner parties, get a dining table and chairs. If you’re going to be lounging, buy sofas or recliners. Ensure you’re looking at waterproof and outdoor-proof furniture, or your equipment may get damaged or lose value quickly.

If you have chosen a wood flooring, you may want wood furniture to match. Then, use your accent colour for pillows and throws.

You may also want to consider an overhang to give shade, such as a built-in umbrella or awning. This is necessary for gardens that will not have tall trees or plants

5. Vary plant sizes

One of the best ways to create a unique look to your rooftop garden is to vary the size of your planters and plants! If you have a great view, stick to smaller shrubs and flowers. If you want a hidden sanctuary and escape, opt for taller trees and ivy. Containers of varying sizes will also help you set up the flow and vibe to your garden.

You may want to consider putting in wooden or metal raised beds. If you put roof supports in and waterproof them, these beds can grow tall shrubs and small trees while creating a safe and secure barrier around the edge of your roof.

6. Install lighting

This is an important feature that people often forget! You can have a million amazing rooftop garden ideas, but if there isn’t proper lighting, you can’t see any of them! The right lighting can also boost the look of your décor tenfold.  You always want to ensure the stairways and roof perimeter are well lit to avoid any slips, trips, or mishaps.

We love the look of outdoor light strings, which creates a rustic and peaceful vibe. You can also use outdoor light posts, mushroom lighting, and even planting lighters that can be installed in the dirt of your planters!

7. Find a unique focal point

Every space needs a focal point and your furnished rooftop is no exception! One of the best rooftop garden design ideas we’ve found is using a water feature or statue to tie together the theme. Add a small fountain or a statue that draws attention and adds a personalised touch.

Many people use trees or plants to make a statement, which is also great! These may need to be replaced over time and thus aren’t permanent focal pieces. However, this might be a great option if you plan to change up your rooftop garden each year! 

The final step is to sit back, relax, and enjoy the fresh air!

With these 7 steps, you’ll be able to generate your own rooftop garden ideas to create an inspiring, tranquil, and exciting addition to your home!

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