How To Create An Indoor Garden

If you know me, you’ll know I’m notorious for my inability to keep plants alive. Yes, I’ve managed to take down even the lowest maintenance of living greens (ahem, cacti). Over watering, under watering, not enough sun, too much sun . . . it’s hard staying green! But after many failed attempts and now, a newfound motivating force, I’m happy to report that 2016 has been off to a relatively good start in the quest to cultivate my green thumb. It all started with an infatuation with handmade ceramics after taking a pottery course last fall. The understanding of the patience and tenacity required to throw clay successfully has given me a new appreciation for the art of pottery making. Not only do I hold the few pieces I’ve created near and dear to me, I find myself addicted to scouring Etsy and shopping from an immense array of talented ceramic artists. So what was I to do with my growing collection of hand crafted pots and vintage vessels? Fill them with happy plants and use them to enliven my home, of course. And no, I’m not ashamed to admit that my dedication to indoor gardens started with my love of ceramics and vintage vessels first. Plants second. Nonetheless, here are two ways in which even the blackest of thumbs can maintain an indoor garden:

Plant Shelfie: Plants are perfect for filling empty spaces on bookshelves, accent tables and even bar carts. I love using vintage brass vessels, found on Etsy, as unexpected planters. I also love the idea of clustering plants of varying heights together but also using really low and flat vessels for cascading succulents that can spill over an edge of a shelf. You’ll need drainage so I recommend punching a small hole with a hammer and nail, or drill, at the bottom of thin brass bowls and cups.

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Bathroom garden: A minimalist, indirect light-filled room, like a bathroom, is the perfect place for an indoor garden. Plus, those morning showers make for a great daily reminder to keep those plants thriving! As it turns out, succulents and cacti flourish well in unglazed and glazed ceramics so I was excited to style all of my favorite, neutral grey and black clay pots from Etsy together. The end result is lush and gorgeous but it also takes some thought and care in considering the amount of humidity and light a bathroom gets. If you’re mixing cacti, succulents and tropical plants, just be sure the environment is right. For example, I like to open a window at least once a day so my succulents can dry out a bit between waterings. And that coconut palm in the back? I move it forward while I’m showering so that it gets the most warm water. How’s that for multi-tasking?

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A few extra tips:

  • Keep a journal: I found that keeping a watering journal in my calendar has been very beneficial, especially in the beginning. I water my plants on certain days of the week just to keep it habitual and consistent.
  • Research: Each plant variety has different watering and light needs. Stick with low maintenance plants to start but also, do your research before buying them.
  • Name them: Naming your plants helps you remember specific needs. Plus, it also helps you grow attached to them – even better motivation to keep them alive!

(art direction by HonestlyWTF, styled by Bianca Sotelo, photography by Ashley Batz; Taule Bar Cart via Lulu & Georgia, this post was created in partnership with Etsy)

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65 Comments

  1. Oh, how lovely! I need to acquire more plants stat. <3

    3.21.16
    Reply
  2. Michelle wrote:

    This looks wonderful! It really motivates me to get more plants and try to keep them alive!
    https://www.makeandmess.com/

    3.21.16
    Reply
  3. ari wrote:

    Love this!! So original and easy!
    http://www.thedoubledenim.com

    3.21.16
    Reply
  4. Absolutely beautiful Erica!

    Molly {Dreams in HD}
    http://www.dreamsinhd.blogspot.com

    3.21.16
    Reply
  5. Krystal wrote:

    I’m in love with these setups, I still need to get plants for my new apartment and this was just the inspiration I needed. Also the idea to name them is the cutest, I can’t wait to name my plant babies!

    Krystal | http://floradelsoul.com/

    3.21.16
    Reply
  6. Diana wrote:

    These are adorable! Love how a bit of green livens up a place 🙂

    Diana | http://www.thechicdiary.com

    3.21.16
    Reply
  7. i love the plants in the bathroom, what a great way to decorate the space, thanks for the inspirations =o)

    http://dreamofadventures.blogspot.com/

    3.21.16
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  8. Mun wrote:

    The plants in the bathroom look incredible!

    3.21.16
    Reply
  9. froutakia wrote:

    your photos are always amazing !!!

    3.22.16
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  10. Alana wrote:

    Love this post, love the colors and I am definitely inspired to make turning my old drinks trolley into a indoor plant haven. xx

    3.22.16
    Reply
  11. Alesya wrote:

    The texture of your pots add so much to the plants. Very nicely paired.

    3.30.16
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  12. Marisa wrote:

    So inspired by your bathroom! Where do you get the neat sculptural wood stool?

    6.8.16
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  13. The golden mirror with legs is adorable ! Where can i get it ? Thks !

    7.14.16
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  14. Love this! Always trying to add more green into my flat, love the plant pots in the bathroom!

    7.18.16
    Reply
  15. Kristin wrote:

    Who made your tub or the tub casing I should say? Love!!!

    10.18.16
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  16. Júlia wrote:

    Do cacti like the humid bathroom air? How long have they been there? Thanks!

    10.20.16
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    • Erica wrote:

      Hi Julia, my cacti have thrived in the bathroom since this post was published – which has been a year to this date! I should also mention that I have very high ceilings and windows in the bathroom so the humidity doesn’t linger for very long post showers.

      10.20.16
  17. Kirsten wrote:

    Just seeing this post via Pinterest, I love how you’ve arranged these! PS- a word of warning, sticks of fire (aka pencil plant) is quite toxic! Handle with care, wash your hands really well after touching/pruning, and keep away from dogs and kids. 🙂

    1.25.17
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    • Erica wrote:

      @Kirsten Wow, I had no idea. Thank you for the warning!

      1.25.17
  18. Genevieve wrote:

    I love this set up! wondering–what breeds of plants are featured on the bar cart?

    8.27.17
    Reply
  19. Chelsea wrote:

    Your bathroom garden has me sighing in envy. It’s that perfect atmosphere of nature and spa vibe. The chicken footed mirror is adorable – do you remember where you got it? Thanks for sharing your amazing plants! May they stay healthy and whole.

    8.29.17
    Reply
  20. Yasna Ekama wrote:

    Really beautiful!!! Where did you buy the laundry basket???

    9.18.17
    Reply