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The other day I was paging through a Pottery Barn catalogue with my frient (that's what I call a friend who has turned client) and we were admiring the greens they stage in their rooms to make it dramatic. Greenery really does bring a room to a whole new level-try it, take one of their catalogues and cover up all of the 3 - 4 dramatic greens, plants and branches they have filled within each page....not so fab now is it?
Not everyone lives on an orchard or has 5 acres to meander about and is awarded the free time to clip and arrange. But let's admit it, we all want that look. You can! Here are some simple ideas to bring the outside in and temper your spring fever until our beloved blossoms come about. I also show some photos of my favorite plants that have come (and gone-sniff sniff) from our house.
Looking back at all of the plants that have been with us reminds me how much I have learned. I am not, by far, an expert in horticulture, however I have now figured out my house and which species do well and which do not, and in which corner. I have a system and some tools ( a watering meter which reads moisture level-then I tag the pot with tape labeled it's desired water level i.e."4" or the right level as given per the gals at the nursery). I now always fill my watering can with water so it is ready at room temperature, which is less shocking to the tropical plants I have). I now know how to water, how much and how often, when to translplant or whether to wait until spring. I have learned which to move them away from heating vents come winter too ( I learned that one the hard way) and bring inward from any cold and drafty windows). I have learned that when I go on a vacation, if I want to come back to plants that are alive, I drop them off at a nursery for care (we have a local place here that provides that service). I know which plants my cat won't eat - she has eaten too many Maiden Hair ferns that I care to list (grrrrr that stinker) but she won't go near an orchid. The one shown in my bedroom? Dead. I even tried spraying the fern with hot pepper spray- and that worked for awhile, but the maiden hair was too delicate for the amount it took to deter Ms. Kitty. She also loves ferns, so I have to have those perched high. (No philodendrons or poinsettias-I know they are poisonous to pets -and kids).
With all this knowledge, I still lose a few for unknown reasons, and it's so disappointing. I just lost the bonsai that I show in some of the photos below that I had for 4 years. I moved it to the kids bath thinking that with the skylight and the humity it would be a great fit, but it didn't like the change, maybe for the sake of change. (I sure wish they could talk!)
Even with the risk of plant loss, the trial and error is all worth the breath of freshness they bring into a home. It's equally rewarding when you are doing something right and witness them thrive! I know plastic and silk plants are easy, but for me, I just can't accept the fact that they are fake. To me, it's so much more beautiful to have something that takes care, a little bit of work and natural looking.
If you like the green touches, but can't handle the committment a plant requires, then maybe you will be more comfortable with sprigs. For $4.99 I purchased a cluster of filler "greens" at a grocery store florist and cut some sprigs for around the house. Collect some little bud vases from various stores (or goodwill) and fill with water , then add your little sprigs and show off on tables, a mantle, or a sill, in collections of two or three. Easy breezy and they will last over a week! The more thick and sculptural, the better. If a sprig is more delicate or "weedy" looking, try to single it out (one sprig per bud vase) so it doesn't appear to be a snarley mess.
I hope I have inspired you to green up your home! Send my some photos of your"sprigs" to post if you decided to go green this week!
Have a great weekend!