How to: Style indoor plants
Inject life into every nook with Jason Chongue’s helpful hints, from his inspiring new book Plant Society.
City living often means navigating a concrete jungle. Ever-increasing housing density means our homes are becoming smaller and smaller, and many of us now live in apartments and small spaces with limited access to, or views of, greenery.
Now more than ever I believe that it is important not to lose sight of nature in our man-made spaces. Houseplants bring the outdoors inside and help visually lift our surroundings.
There is an immense range of plants to complement our living spaces. Whether you leave them to grow tall or place them to cascade over shelves, there is the perfect plant out there for every home.
Throughout history, humans have used plants to breathe life into all sorts of spaces. Outdoors, we use them to beautify gardens, parks, streets and public spaces, including buildings – think shopping malls and office buildings.
In our homes, houseplants add tranquillity, warmth and personality to even the coldest of rooms. Plants introduce organic shapes and colour into an environment otherwise dominated by hard surfaces and sharp edges.
With so many houseplants available, there is a never-ending list of options when introducing plants into your home.
A home can never have enough plants. As your plant collection grows, you’ll find ways to start layering by curating a collection of plants to create
a visually appealing grouping of texture, colour and form.
When curating plants, always play with height, size and leaf texture to create interesting groupings. It’s also good to create little ‘plant families’ by grouping your plants according to their light and watering needs. This makes caring for them easier.
An example of a grouping with similar care needs is: peace lilies, fruit salad plants, Swiss cheese vines, devil’s ivy and queen of hearts. Another good grouping is radiator plant, begonia, fiddle-leaf fig and peacock plant.
Choose a few plants to be the ‘heroes’ and complement them with plainer plants. For example, a variegated Monstera, with its unusually patterned leaves, should be the focus amongst plants with plainer foliage, such as a Philodendron cordatum.
This edited extract is from Plant Society by Jason Chongue, photography by Armelle Habib, published by Hardie Grant Books, and available from all good book stores.