Home Lifestyle & Travel Home & Garden The return of houseplants

The return of houseplants

Remember the ferns, begonias and delicious monsters that used to decorate our homes way back when? Well, it’s time to buy a few pretty pots for indoor pot plants as they are trendy again!

And there are valid reasons why it is a good idea to follow the trend.

• Plants can absorb the radiation from electronic devices in the work and living place.

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• Plants clean the air. The best plant to purify the air is a Golden pothos (Epipremnum aureum), also known as devil’s ivy.

• Plants help us feel more relaxed. The presence of plants leads to reduced stress and anxiety and it also help to ease depression.

• Cut flowers are expensive and last for a short period of time, whereas flowering houseplants last much longer.

• Large and dramatic tropical leaves like those of monsteras and philodendrons are popular décor trends.

Choosing indoor plants

Lighting is the most important factor that determines the success of growing indoor plants.
You need to choose the correct plant for low, medium and high levels of light. Once the plants’ lighting needs are established, choose plants for their size, shape, colour and texture to complement the décor.

We’re planting salvia ‘Salmia’ for its superb show in the garden. This shrubby upright perennial salvia produces endless spikes of large dark purple, pink or orange red blooms that attract bees and stand out against the dark green leaves. Plants flower from spring to autumn and even through winter in warmer areas. Growing 60 to 80cm high and wide, it is good filler for beds or as a feature in a large container.

Plants are frost-hardy, performing best in full sun in fertile, well-drained soil. Like all salvia, it needs moderate watering and the soil can dry out between watering. For strong growth, cut back in spring, fertilise and water well.

Best for patios … Imagine having deliciously fragrant and pickable sweet basil at your fingertips. Basil ‘Dolce Fresca’ is patio basil that grows perfectly in a pot, keeps its compact bushy shape and doesn’t get leggy, like garden varieties tend to do. Plants grow 30 to 36cm high, with a high leaf yield.

This basil has won horticultural awards including the All-American Selections vegetable category for its sweet, tender leaves and ornamental shape. Use the leaves for pesto, with pasta and in any Mediterranean-inspired dish. A great patio edible.

Details: www.ballstraathof.co.za


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