Greenery can add a lot to a home, but for many homeowners the idea of incorporating living plants into a space is daunting.
“So many of my clients will say, ‘I kill everything I have!’” said designer Jamie Herzlinger. But what she tells them is that many of the latest trends in greenery don’t require a lot of maintenance.
“Succulents and air plants just need a little bit of water,” Herzlinger explained. “I think they’re a fantastic idea because it’s a great way to bring nature in, and you don’t have to have a green thumb.”
Succulents, cacti and air plants are not new forms of greenery. Popular across the U.S. in the 1970s and continuously a form of greenery in Southwestern states, these hardy and low-maintenance plants are now a hot way to add nature indoors.
The container matters
Although succulents are primarily shown in glassy, modern planters, Herzlinger says that these plants can be added to any vessel. The shape and structure of the planter will determine the look of the space.
For example, Herzlinger suggests a traditional planter for an elegant look, perhaps sticking a plant in a blue-and-white porcelain Chinese foot bath.
“If you were to pot that up with living moss, that sitting on a dining room table with gorgeous sterling candlesticks, it is as beautiful as fresh-cut flowers,” she said.
For a more contemporary look, a glass or wooden container can be hung on the wall as living art. Even in the kitchen, small apothecary jars or containers can be the perfect home for an air plant.
Curated, not over-accessorized
As with any accessory, less is more. There is a tendency to want to add more items to a room, but often Herzlinger finds herself taking out the items her clients add.
“Try accessorizing with one large item or groupings of two to three,” she explained.
The look should be touches of greenery, not jungle.
Other plant options
While some designers rely on faux plants and flowers, Herzlinger believes that with enough low-maintenance plants out there, there’s no need to go with the silk versions.
Her other suggestions for low-maintanence plants? Moss, cacti and fig trees, if your space has high enough ceilings and plenty of light.
And, in a pinch, fresh flowers can be found at any local grocery store and are the easiest green addition to a room.
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