It’s a Jungle Over Here

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HON project in Plaza Midwood | photo by Laura Sumrak

If you come by the studio, a welcome mat will greet you before Berkeley’s friendly pup can even get to the door: Welcome to the Jungle. 

It’s no secret we love plants. They add literal life to a space, variations on height to a corner or tablescape, a pop of green — and are overall fun and inexpensive accessories. When we tackled decorating Kelley’s new build in NoDa, we set the final items in place and stepped back beyond thrilled with the outcome — and later realized it was border line jungle-ish. But we love it and kept every single leafy friend. It’s incredible what character and cozy element live greenery brings to a space. Here are some of our go-to’s for our own spaces — and client’s homes.

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The Snake plant — also know as Mother in Law’s Tongue — is a perfect pick for a bedroom as it’s easy to maintain and cleans the air at night. (This plant converts CO2 into oxygen in the sleeping hours.) 

Yuccas are great picks for low-light areas and some of the heartiest plants we know. They’re great for adding height and are easy to take care of. It’s always hard to grab plants that will thrive in windowless spaces but we’ve had great luck with putting yuccas in bathrooms. They need a little water but that’s about it!

The Split leaf monstera (also known as the split leaf philodendron) is gorgeous because of it’s big, heart shaped/palm-like leaves. Native to the jungles of Mexico, Panama, and India — this one reminds of our travels and is easy to maintain.

We’re fans of succulents and cacti of all varieties. We style them in small containers on nightstands or grouped on coffee tables. From time to time we’ve had trouble keeping succulents alive but for their price point you can’t beat them — and texture they add is just stunning. 

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Of course we’re fans of the Fiddle leaf fig, but a warning — it’s not a breeze to keep alive. Faux fiddle leaf figs hit a surprisingly high price point and to be honest, we are not fans of fake anything. One exception: we are currently designing three girl’s bedrooms and were in love with the idea of bringing in some cacti for dimension in one of the spaces. With a younger person in mind, we went with a large-scale faux cactus that is charming and just right for her room.

Like shoes for an outfit, what you house your plant in makes or breaks it. Keep it simple. Some of our favorite options are baskets — we’re loving this one from Kazi Goods. (Make sure to use a watering tray inside the basket underneath your plant.) White is a great option and we love this simple option as well as the mid-century vibe of this planter. Concrete planters are always a good idea, such as this one with modern lines. 

To find just the right plants, you might find us wandering the rows of glorious succulents at Malone’s nursery in North Charlotte — our favorite spot for plants of all kinds. They have a specific gift for carrying gorgeous succulents and cacti. We also love Pistils Nursery -- it's based in Portland but is fantastic for unique finds that you can have deliveried to your home. Kelley snagged a plant tucked inside a moss ball that can hang from the ceiling or also works on a tablescape, it's awesome! For other local options, we've found great finds at Blackhawk Garden Center and Roundtree Plantation Garden Center.

One (unsponsored) note: Lowe’s has a 90-day return (with receipt) policy. So, if you don’t have a green thumb and are worried about the investment — grab some plants at Lowe’s and keep those receipts. You can leave the plants in the original packaging and just drop them down into baskets or planters, making it easy to pull them out for watering (and possible returning) too. While we’ve never had personal experience with Home Depot, their return policy is unconditional returns for a full year — with receipt.  And we spotted some gorgeous Fiddle Leaf figs at Home Depot a few weeks ago.

To check out our jungle, pop by the studio any day at 2108 South Boulevard, Unit 115, and to see what’s inspiring us on a daily basis — head over to our instagram at @houseofnomaddesign.