Plans for Plants

Hello and welcome to our latest it’s elementary blog – my chance to spread the word about sustainable interior architecture and design. At Elemental Studio, we get truly excited by environmentally progressive ways of transforming spaces – and you can’t get greener than plants!

If you’ve been here before, you’ll know how important it is for me to ‘bring nature in’. What you may not know is that I’ve massacred quite a lot of greenery in my time (I’m a better designer than gardener). So here are some brilliant ways to bring plants indoors to brighten your interiors, without having to worry too much about murder or maintenance.

Succulents come with an amazing variety of textures and shapes. I’ve loved them since childhood – and remember Monty Don showing a garden comprised only of these amazing plants. They need minimal care or water, so are ideal for adding small bursts of succulent splendour!

How do you feel about cacti? Not everyone’s a fan, and no one likes pricking their finger on a spike, but hold on a moment. These are brilliant little companions if you want a burst of nature without the hassle of too much maintenance. I love combining cacti with succulents to create wondrous natural shapes – then leaving them to get on with life. Yes, they need misting or watering, but not much.

If you need to make a more sizeable statement, go for palms. Their large leaves are the perfect way to fill a corner, introducing lovely calming shades of green. They also create fantastic shadow shows against walls.

I’ve also found Monstera minima sturdy and hard to kill! I love the elegance of its leaves. Mine has grown sideways, but to do things properly all you need to do is train it up a bamboo cane. Like palms, it only needs watering once a week: put both together in any environment to add a taste of the jungle and a joyous spectacle, all year round.

And here’s a topical hint. We’re all spending a lot of time cramped together indoors, so why not take a look at the peace lily. It purifies the air, gives bursts of colour when in the sun (but thrives in the gloom too) and is easy to look after. Water it when dry and feed it fertiliser once a year. Don’t let your child or dog eat it though: it’s mildly toxic – a failing not shared by golden pothos and snake plants which also act as air filters.

Whatever you choose, styling is key – and the classic trio is a great way to show off your greenery. If you’re buying from a garden centre, place your threesomes side by side to see how colours, heights and textures combine.

I hope I’ve helped inspire a few ideas, but I’ll leave you with some links which may help  ‘plant’ a few more green thoughts …