Get the look, houseplant edition
If you joined us at the Show back in June, the chances are that you experienced our brand new Blooming Interiors Stage where experts, including On The Ledge presenter Jane Perrone, shared tips and techniques about how to successfully garden indoors.
Here at BBC Gardeners' World Live HQ it left us wanting more, more, more! So we'd like to welcome back Jane Perrone, this time as guest editor of this blog all about getting the most up-to-date look in houseplants.
When space is at a premium, hanging houseplants offers a chance to green up your space without taking up valuable room on floors or shelves - and keeps toxic plants away from nibbling cats and toddlers. Rotating hooks designed for wardrobe hanging can be firmly attached to ceilings to make useful anchor points for trailing plants such as pothos and string of pearls (Senecio rowleyanus); to get plants closer to the window, a curtain rod can be repurposed as a plant hanger across a window frame too. In bathrooms, repurpose shower caddies as homes for moisture-loving plants such as Tillandsias and ferns. Whatever you use, remember plant pots can be heavy especially when watered, so don’t skimp on the fixings.
Marimo moss balls must qualify as the easiest houseplants ever. These fluffy green balls about the size of a golf ball spend their lives in the bottom of lakes, but they make the perfect zero-maintenance houseplant (even though they aren’t moss at all, but a type of algae). Just stick a few in a decorative clear glass jar full of water (add some stones if you like) and they’ll make a curious addition to your Just change the water now and again to keep them looking good. You probably won’t find these in your local garden centre but they are easy to source online from auction sites or fishkeeping supply shops.
The problem with most terrariums is they are too small to sustain most plants for long, as the plants will quickly outgrow the space. If you have an old fish tank in your loft, dig it out and plant it up with ferns and mosses: if not raid your local charity shops for one or ask around friends and family. You could even place one in a north-facing room add an LED grow lamp to lighten up a dark corner.
If you’re into pink, there are plenty of houseplants to keep you on trend: I love the easy to grow compact tradescantia known as Callisia repens ‘Pink Panther’ with its tiny white, pink and green striped leaves, and the pink polka dot plant Hypoestes phyllostachya is really undemanding too. If you’re the type to underwater, a pink-flowered Flaming Katy (Kalanchoe blossfeldiana) will thrive on a sunny windowsill.
Take one houseplant whose leaves bear a passing resemblance to hair - spider plants (chlorophytums), rhipsalis, tradescantias and spiky aloes work well - and match with a cache pot in the shape of a human head. These are all the rage right now and vary from the cute to the downright spooky, such as containers made from dolls’ heads. If you want the gothic version, try a skull planted with a venus flytrap.
Jane Perrone is host of houseplant podcast On The Ledge. Find out more and listen at janeperrone.com.