Gardening in a rental property

20 posts in this topic

If the landlord isn't happy about it, instead of planting in the ground, I would suggest getting pots and having a container garden instead. That way you aren't doing anything "permanent" to the property (ok, the grass under the pot might die, but that'll come back), and there shouldn't be anything for them to object about.

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I agree with mellyco regarding pots. I'd perhaps steer clear of putting anything on the grass which would kill patches. It sounds easy to reseed grass but it's sometimes more difficult than it sounds. Anything that might make the landlord unhappy isn't worth it. He might even object to having different color grass patches. We've got a load of seeds on our lawn and despite following the instructions, not one has germinated :huh: If there are bare flower beds, you can bury cheap plastic pots up to the rim and easily remove them if you leave. You can often get freebie pots from garden centers that might be slightly broken. If you have a terrace, use more decorative pots though they are quite pricey here in Germany. I recently got a great massive glazed pot from a Sperrmüll find that our neightbour couldn't manage to move around and I just filled it with some cheap aldi plants...I've always found them to be great quality too. Where we live they usually sell them on Thursdays but you would need to get there early.

 

Happy gardening.

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A long shot, but thought I'd try reviving this thread to ask... has anyone had any longterm annoyances or surprises with altering a garden/backyard as a renter? What are the odds of anything being successfully sold off to a Nachmieter

 

We're renting in a small Mehrfamilienhaus and have a large, private back yard, more than 80m2 of green. We've asked, and all neighbours (all are owners but us) are nice and eagerly gave their blessing for us to do basically whatever we want to pretty it up, as has our landlord. They too would like to see it look better than the current patch of mossy patches, weeds and crabgrass. The previous tenant apparently did nothing but use it as a toilet patch for her dog, rarely mowed it, certainly hadn't planted anything.

 

The soil is quite sandy and full of random construction debris if you dig deeper than a foot or so, so we're going to build a couple raised beds and have a few other large mobile containers. We've already put in a composter, and some berry bushes and bulbs late last summer.

 

Of course, it's at our own expense. I know this is a bit of a money pit, but it's a hobby, we're experienced gardeners and we like growing our own. We plan to keep things in good upkeep. We like our flat and don't plan on moving any time soon as we only moved last summer, but figure that eventually will have to find something larger (baby on the way), maybe in 4-5 years. Are we just giving reason for the landlord to later jack up rent at our expense? Are garden upgrades normally pawned off to the next tenants?

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13 minutes ago, alderhill said:

The soil is quite sandy and full of random construction debris if you dig deeper than a foot or so, so we're going to build a couple raised beds and have a few other large mobile containers. We've already put in a composter, and some berry bushes and bulbs late last summer.

 

Sounds like paradise! Keep me posted!

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My understanding of this is that most gardens and plants do not really have much residual value.  You write them off on purchase really.  Our work on it definitely not.   There'd be no worth to pass on to the next tenant / owner, although the plants would remain yours to take away (or remove at any point).     If you look at apartment price calculations (whether bought ot rented), the outdoor space is usually incorporated at the same % regardless of what's going on it, which says much the same thing.

 

That old line as with a good bathroom etc.  Might make it more saleable although, equally, many people who do value garden space will have their own desires.  My current neighbour paid enormous care and effort in creating her garden over many years.  The week after she left, that lovely garden of 15 years in the nurturing was gone.

 

In the scheme of things, having done here now, I'd not call it that big a money pit really, surprised how relatively affordable it's been.  Had bigger money pits, for sure.   I am clear I am only doing it for my family'senjoyment, though.

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imho, it's we Brits who value gardens since we became homeowners way before it became fashionable in Germany, which has only taken root the last 20-30 years. There is no such TV show like Gardener's World which has a 60 year history since we owned our own places very early. Germans don't value garden work, they are obsessed with "Dreck" and look down upon raking, mowing, pruning as serf work.

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Most Germans don't have a garden attached to their home of course.  It'd be a separate space like small garden or allotment at best.   They are really popular in the east.  Huge swathes of then, practically whole districts just for them.    Demand changing a bit with the move to urban living and higher birthrates.   As I've related before, when I bought in 2007, it was like a fight to avoid being lumbered with the outdoor space.  I fell for the "it's not yours, it's definitely not yours...oh look what's in the contract you are about to sign" bluff :lol:.   That is less likely now.  Buying more recently, it's a marketing plus.   People are looking for personal outdoor space.

 

I would not say Germans look down on the work more that it's the nature of a highly functional R&D society - comparative advantage.  Germany needs people in their urban locale delivering their high margin profession - not wasting time in more domestic support work like gardening etc, that's someone else's profession.  And I am the same on a lot of mine.   I'd not do landscaping etc myself, easier to get a professional.

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29 minutes ago, swimmer said:

I would not say Germans look down on the work more that it's the nature of a highly functional R&D society - comparative advantage.  Germany needs people in their urban locale delivering their high margin profession - not wasting time in more domestic support work like gardening etc, that's someone else's profession.  And I am the same on a lot of mine.   I'd not do landscaping etc myself, easier to get a professional.

 

I think you're missing the point. Many Germans and others are like the OP and ENJOY gardening as a hobby. They'd rather do it themselves and don't want a professional gardener (even if they could afford one). That is why people are willing to pay for allotments - we have many here in the city.

 

 

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44 minutes ago, jeremytwo said:

imho, it's we Brits who value gardens since we became homeowners way before it became fashionable in Germany, which has only taken root the last 20-30 years. There is no such TV show like Gardener's World which has a 60 year history since we owned our own places very early. Germans don't value garden work, they are obsessed with "Dreck" and look down upon raking, mowing, pruning as serf work.

 

I don't know where you get this idea, but German gardens are usually well kept. I walk past them every day with the dogs. Besides I also live in a mining area (limestone) and the housing estates for the workers all have long gardens at the back with vegetable plots as has been the tradition all over the Ruhrgebiet, similar to where I used to live in the Rhondda Glam, South Wales as a child. Many of them also traditionally keep pigeons. Lacking a garden most flats have balconies, which are enthusiastically planted with flowering plants - a mini garden so to say. Anyway, who do you think buys all the plants in the many Garden Centres everywhere? 

 

As far as TV garden shows are concerned, I have watched several over the years. Here's a list: 

https://www.gartenlinksammlung.de/fernseh.htm

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Germans don't value garden work, they are obsessed with "Dreck" and look down upon raking, mowing, pruning as serf work.

 

You're too funny. Maybe your wife's royal family see it as serf work, jerm.

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1 hour ago, swimmer said:

Most Germans don't have a garden attached to their home of course.  It'd be a separate space like small garden or allotment at best.   They are really popular in the east.  Huge swathes of then, practically whole districts just for them.   

 

I would not say Germans look down on the work more that it's the nature of a highly functional R&D society - comparative advantage.  Germany needs people in their urban locale delivering their high margin profession - not wasting time in more domestic support work like gardening etc, that's someone else's profession. 

 

You mean Schrebergärten? Yeah we have them here in Bayern. I wanted one additionally to my own but heard of the nightmare rules which are worse than British allotments.

 

As regards "wasting time" those same clowns waste their money on gyms and treadmills when half an hour's raking leaves fresh air and Vitamin D would do more for the body than a silly personal trainer.

 

And Bramble, I note you live in the poorer Ruhr. I live in head-up-the-arse Bayern, south of Munich. This is kind of like the SE of England, a Siemens manager's paradise. I never chose it for those reasons btw I just wanted to be nearer the Alps. This is a very rich region. We even have that Müller player from FC Bayern in the next village but one. When I've travelled up north to Oberpfalz, i was always struck how much nicer the Germans in that part of Germany - they call it the German Congo - are. I worked up there a year for the Army.

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28 minutes ago, jeremytwo said:

And Bramble, I note you live in the poorer Ruhr. I live in head-up-the-arse Bayern, south of Munich. This is kind of like the SE of England, a Siemens manager's paradise. I never chose it for those reasons btw I just wanted to be nearer the Alps. This is a very rich region. We even have that Müller player from FC Bayern in the next village but one. When I've travelled up north to Oberpfalz, i was always struck how much nicer the Germans in that part of Germany - they call it the German Congo - are. I worked up there a year for the Army.

 

Sorry Jeremy, but after the above statement and your general input on this thread you certainly earned it.

 

5c47186d845ad_jeremytwotrophy.jpg.416a1d

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3 hours ago, jeremytwo said:

And Bramble, I note you live in the poorer Ruhr. I live in head-up-the-arse Bayern, south of Munich. This is kind of like the SE of England, a Siemens manager's paradise. I never chose it for those reasons btw I just wanted to be nearer the Alps. This is a very rich region. We even have that Müller player from FC Bayern in the next village but one. When I've travelled up north to Oberpfalz, i was always struck how much nicer the Germans in that part of Germany - they call it the German Congo - are. I worked up there a year for the Army.

 

What has this comment got to do with gardens and gardening in Germany? You're a right snob and it keeps showing.

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In general, I find the Germans I know are quite gardening friendly. I do live next door to an ex-Stadt Gartnerin, and we have a Kleingarten, so this is perhaps not a surprise.

 

Of my oldies, who are almost all ex-professionals, those with gardens do it themselves and are careful of their land. It is something we often talk about, and although they vary from a balcony with a couple of pots to a large estate with lake et. al. there is a general interest in all of it - landscaping, planning, planting, upkeep, etc. The balcony people share tips about awesome plants which are a pleasure to have, we have lived through the greening of the lake with algae and the arrival of 'posh' ducks which displaced the local common sort - and someone's 72 year old husband, who could frankly afford to pay Charlie Dimmock to come over and do the job, hired and drove a tractor thingy to remove a stump which had been bugging him for a while.

 

I think this is quite normal, and am surprised that the trend towards 'outdoor rooms' etc hasn't made it a 'thing' in smart Southern Bavaria. 'Landlust' is after all a massive runaway success and embodies this kind of lifestyle. 

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Thanks for all the input, everyone.

 

Yea, figured it would have no resale value, but either way it's OK. We do some jarring at the end of season with whatever's made it to fruition, and usually get a few jars of tomato/chilli chutney, and our own dried herb mixes, etc. Plus veg, herbs and pretty flowers throughout the growing season.

 

When we took over our flat, we were surprised the large backyard had nothing going on it. It's perfectly aligned southward, and we have a long side of the wall with dark brick siding for warmth-loving plants and such. Up here in Niedersachsen, we do have to deal with a shorter growing season and more cloud cover per year...

 

The property actually comes with a gardener (we pay for him in the Nebenkosten), who in warmer months comes around once every couple weeks to mow the front lawn and, apparently, our and the nextdoor neighbour's lawn too. (We'd rather do it ourselves to keep for mulch). He's actually a retired gardener and just doing it now "for fun". Gifted us a Christmas tree this year, and given us plenty of advice on the soil, as well as an earful of gossip on the landlord, lol.

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