Monthly Archives: January 2019

Houseplant Heaven – Bathroom Jungle

Houseplant Heaven – Bathroom Jungle

I recently re-decorated my bathroom, and am sure that adding lots of green is going to work beautifully with the black and white theme.

I’ve had an aloe there for a while now, and apart from a mealybug infestation, it’s doing ok.

Recently I added this variegated Philodendron, which I’ve already blogged about here.

I completely fell in love with this small zebra plant (Aphelandra squarrosa) at Knights Garden Centre. Apparently they are a bit tricky to take care of – they like warmth and humidity. Not things we have a lot of in the British Winter! So I thought my bathroom would be the best place for it. I have a towel radiator in there which means the room gets reasonably warm, and it gets nice and humid when the shower is on. Fingers crossed it’s gets on ok. The pot is from Burgon and Ball.

The zebra plant has a couple of new friends since I started drafting this post. All from the lovely Suzanne at The Ginger Jungle. If you like unusual house plants, you have to check out her site. She has a very small business, and imports houseplants from all over the place. She has ones you won’t get anywhere else. I went to pick up my new plants from her today (she does mail order, but doesn’t live so far from me, so I went in person). Her house is a veritable jungle, it’s awesome!

The pink edged one at the back is Aglaonema Sparkling Sarah,

and the smaller one at the front is Hoya carnosa variegated ‘tricolor’, which has some pink leaves. I wanted some pink in the bathroom as I have a pale pink shower curtain, and I like things to match (but not too much). The pot is a gorgeous Wedgewood one that I bought in the RHS Wisley gift shop sale last year.

Hanging out above this gorgeous trio is a Fishbone cactus (Epiphyllum anguliger) also from The Ginger Jungle. The pot is from Burgon & Ball

I just love it’s crazy shape. And together I think the four of them have a great mixture of shapes, textures and colours. I’m very happy. Now I just have to keep them alive!

Related Posts: Houseplant Heaven – The beginning of an obsession

Houseplant Heaven – The beginning of an obsession

Houseplant Heaven – The beginning of an obsession

It’s the beginning of 2019, and, as usual, I’m behind the trends! Apparently 2018 was the year of the houseplant, and I only caught the bug at the very end of the year. I think it was a combination of seeing a lovely lush garden in Morocco (and knowing that I could only grow most of the plants indoors), the sadness of not getting out into the garden/allotment in Winter, and too much Pinterest browsing that has started me down this track.

I bought the RHS Practical House Plant Book to help me. It has sections on designing with houseplants, and profiles of 175 plants. It also has a helpful explanation of different types of light in a room, which is very helpful. And of course there is Google for information and Pinterest for inspiration.

I have to confess a love of variegated houseplants. I really like the irregular way the white shows up on the leaves.

Look at this gorgeous sweetheart plant (Philodendron Scandens Brasil). I have put it in my bathroom which is north facing, but with a large window, and it seems happy so far. It is about 1metre tall, and pinned down over the moss stick. I’m hoping that it’s going to get really long, and I can unpin it and train it over the end of the shower rail.

The best thing about is that you can make it climb or trail.

I also bought a Devil’s Ivy (Scindapsus pictus Trebie, also known as silver pothos) at the same time from my local garden centre Priory Farm Nursery. It looks similar to the philodendron, and was climbing on a 50cm moss stick. But being a contrary sort, I wanted it to trail. I undid it all (it was pinned to the stick with small metal pins), and it had one long and two shorter limbs (I’m sure there is a proper name for them!). I’m absolutely thrilled with how it looks cascading down the side of a wardrobe in my dining room. It is in the middle of a knocked through room, but gets quite a bit of light because I have huge 1930’s windows, and it’s near one which is south facing.

I’ve also taken cuttings of both of these. I plan to take cutting of all of my new plants, as an insurance policy! I’m putting them in water on a north facing windowsill. They look pretty, and hopefully will root soon.

Related posts: Houseplant Heaven – Bathroom Jungle

Inspiring Gardens – Majorelle Gardens – Marrakech

Inspiring Gardens – Majorelle Gardens – Marrakech

I recently went on a yoga holiday to a gorgeous hotel called Tigmi just outside Marrakech in Morocco.

I had heard about the Majorelle Gardens from a colleague, who said they were well worth a visit, and I managed to find a fellow garden loving yogi on the holiday, so we went together.

The gardens were built by French artist Jacques Majorelle, but it fell into disrepair when he died in the 1960’s. The garden is also known as the Yves St Laurent gardens as he and his partner Pierre Berge bought the house and gardens in 1981 to save it becoming a hotel. They had it restored and expanded the plant collection. When he died in 2008 his ashes were scattered there, and there is a memorial to him in the gardens (bizarrely it was the scruffiest part of the garden!).

It’s very popular, and was quite crowded, even at 10.30am, but it was an absolute delight to wander round a garden with someone else who loves plants as much as I do!

I’ve subsequently bought Paradise Gardens by Monty Don from Amazon (on kindle because it was only £3.99, and the photos look great on my iPad!), and discovered it’s also in there.

You can click through to the website or buy the book to get a sense of the main features in the garden, I’ve chosen to focus on smaller details that caught my eye. Partly because there were too many people to get good photos of the main structures, and partly because I like close ups of plants!

I loved the coloured pots dotted around the garden. I don’t think it would work in the UK, but it looks gorgeous in the Moroccan light.

This was a citrus area. In a formal pattern, with masses of different citrus trees in pots.

I fell in love with these gorgeous cut out pots. Not sure of their function, but they looked pretty.

Loved the planted tortoise!

And I thought this plant looked spectacular on the top of the wall.

Naturally there was a lot of water, both fountains and still ponds (with fish).

And despite being December, there was still colour and lovely flowers. I would love to know how they get their nasturtiums looking so neat!

Gorgeous arches, floors and doors!

And finally…I think this was my favourite part – you weren’t allowed to walk in this bit – I think it was the garden of the house. It had a lovely calm sense to it, and felt the most like a regular garden.

Related posts: Inspiring Gardens – Nymans Rose Garden, Inspiring Gardens – Perch Hill