Houseplants are, in most cases, grown individually in a pot. However, we would gain by bringing it together in large vats to compose more spectacular decorations, but also for the greater benefit of the plants, the grouping creating a favorable environment.
In general, it should be considered that any newly purchased plant should be planted or repotted immediately to give you complete satisfaction. This advice does not apply to flowering plants which must be waited for wilting before transferring them to a final container.
Combine plants well
Planting indoor plants in groups implies that the selected species have similar or similar requirements in terms of temperature, humidity, lighting and watering. You can however play on the arrangement of the different subjects, for example to install shade plants under the cover of larger species and to place the less water-intensive species on the periphery of the tank, the least humid part. Then it remains to create the arrangement, so that each plant plays its role and remains visible in the decor.
Our tip: By bringing together plants that require special growing conditions such as Bromeliads, carnivorous plants or orchids in the same container, you significantly increase the chances of success and simplify maintenance work. Be uncompromising on the quality of the substrate.
Take care of harmony
The principle of a successful planting is to use the same rules as in a garden bed. Compose your plant arrangement in gradation of heights, play with the contrasts of the foliage and the harmonies of the blooms, create mass effects.
A leaning bin is generally intended to dress a wall or an unattractive piece of furniture. It is seen from one side. The tallest plants are therefore placed in the background, as if to form a curtain of greenery. Smaller species are installed in several rows depending on their size.
A central bin must present a beautiful aesthetic from all angles. It is planted “in a pyramid”, the tallest plants being installed in the middle of the tank, the other plants forming a gradient to the edge of the tank.
A round bin is intended for central use. It consists of a single main plant in the center. A subject on a stem with a ball-shaped antler or a weeping habit is ideal.
A square bin can be back-to-back or central. Unlike the round tank, it is preferable to use species in upright tufts as a highlight.
A rectangular bin is intended to be back-to-back or to serve as a separation. In the first case, combine stem plants and tufts with the background. For a separation, form a homogeneous curtain of erect plants, but well trimmed from bottom to top.
Install indoor plants
Once the nature of the decor and its location have been defined, all that remains is to move on to setting it up.
Direct planting is the classic solution, which consists of filling the tank with potting soil and installing the plants there after having removed them. The advantage is that each subject benefits from a large volume of soil. On the other hand, this imposes a choice of plants accepting the same substrate. On the other hand, after a few months, the roots will become entangled and it will be very difficult to modify anything at the planting, in particular to change a damaged plant without harming its neighbors.
Store the jars, that is to say not to remove the different actors of the decoration, is a practical and simple solution which also makes it possible to adapt the substrate and the watering to each plant “à la carte”.
This is a practical solution, but one which often limits the potential development of the composition. The ideal is to replace the soil in the tank with clay balls, which makes the replacement of a plant quick and without risk of soiling around.
Planting in the ground is the preferred solution in a winter garden or in a single storey house where it is possible to make a planting pit in the ground. The plants will be able to develop as they wish by plunging their roots deeply. It is good to integrate heating resistors at low temperature to achieve optimal growth.
To read also: Using fertilizer well on your houseplants
In the garden, water from rain or watering enters the soil, and then it is partially absorbed by the roots. A fraction of the surplus is stored in the soil, the rest infiltrates in depth. In a pot, if the excess water does not drain through the hole under the pot, it’s a disaster.
Indeed, the roots, attracted by humidity, end up plunging into stagnant water, where they suffocate. Taking advantage of the confined, humid and compact environment, bacteria and fungi attack the weakened roots which rot.
At this stage, the plant is unlikely to survive. Help drain the water with a draining layer at the bottom of the pot. Made up of 3 to 5 cm of clay balls or gravel, it will prevent the roots from forming a plug which could block the opening of the pot. The drainage will isolate the soil from the water that can stagnate in the saucer, which will prevent it from rising towards the plant by capillarity.
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