Tips and Guides

Start A Pocket Garden Today!

We've got secrets that can help you achieve a peaceful green corner—even in a small space

Original Article: Jun-Jun Ganaden Photography: Jun Pinzon

Whether it's a condo unit, a townhouse, a small apartment, or a sprawling multi-storey home—it's no longer surprising to see a quaint pocket of peace filled with plants, a comfy seat, and other interesting accessories. If you've always wanted one, you might be wondering how to get it done right without spending much. To help you carve out a pocket garden in a tight area, here are tips to keep in mind:

1. Clean and define your area.

Determine where you plan to have your mini garden. It's essential to clean this part of the home and remove the unnecessary items that haven taken over the space. Make sure you clean the walls, corners, and the floor. Once you're done with the decluttering part, define the space—are you maximizing the entire area or just a corner? You may want to keep it close to the wall so as not to disrupt other activities that you plan to do in the space.

2. Finalize your plan for the walls.

In the photo above, space designer Jun-Jun Ganaden worked with Bakawan to define the area, add texture, and give the owners extra privacy. As an alternative, you can paint the existing walls in a bright, happy hue or install outdoor bamboo fence panels to make it extra homey.

RL Tip: Looking for bamboo fence panels? Manila Bamboo Store has different products. Their office is located at 447 Alegria St. Sampaloc, Sta. Mesa, Manila. Visit for more details.

3. Add vintage items as accessories.

Do you still have that old ceramic jar in the storage room? Or perhaps you love visiting thrift stores for a couple of quirky items you can add to your space? Bring out your collections and see which ones can add a lovely boost to your green corner. You can even turn some of these into planters! Old tea cups and mason jars can be used to hold succulents and herbs.

4. Work with low-maintenance and affordable plants.

While succulents, cacti, and herbs form the well-loved trio of plants you can care for, there are more options available in different stores today that won't make a dent in your pocket. When visiting stores, simply ask the attendant about the low-maintenance plants and ask for a recommendation about which ones you can pair. You may also want to check out online sellers and shops to make it easier.

READ: 10 Affordable Plants For Your Home

5. Ask yourself: are you adding a water feature?

Your dream of having a beautiful fountain may take a back seat for now, but this shouldn't stop you from adding a water feature. Home depots and garden stores have different options you can choose from like wall-mounted fountains and small dishes.

READ: 3 Types of Water Features You Can Add To Your Garden

6. Add a bit of whimsy.

Since it's your green corner, feel free to decorate it with pieces you like. Are you fond of cute little figurines? Use these as decor! You can even spruce it up with string lights for an extra delightful touch. Just remember not to get cords and electrical connections wet.

7. Bring in something organic.

A pocket garden can bring you closer to nature even in the middle of busy, bustling city. Complete the look of your Zen corner with river rocks and smooth pebbles. Use these as borders to define a group of plants as well as to tie the whole look together.

Find gardening materials and other must-haves in these stores:

Angel's Blooms Garden

Wilcon Depot, Pasong Tamo, Makati City

  • #2212 Chino Roces Avenue, San Lorenzo, Makati City
  • Tel. No. 893-3120

True Value

  • Concourse Level, Power Plant Mall, Rockwell Center, Makati City
  • Tel. No. 898-2572

Read the original article ("Pocket Gardener") in the June 2004 issue of Real Living Magazine. Download your digital copy of Real Living on the Real Living App. Log on to for more details.

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