To create an effective transition between your garden and your house, you need to think about your outdoor room with a combination of landscaping and interior decorating strategies in mind.
As far as the link between the house and outdoors is concerned, you can borrow colours and styles from the main rooms. By reinterpreting them with different textures in the fabrics you use and less formal pieces in whicker or rustic timber, you can achieve an effective indoor/outdoor aesthetic.
Once you have your furniture and accessories worked out, you need to bring the garden into the space as well. There is a wealth of plants to choose from to create many different effects.
Worried about the look, and the looking after?
Don’t be. The basic elements that result in a successful garden outdoors are the same when you’re ‘landscaping’ indoors. You need a variety of height, colour and texture, without it getting too busy. You also need tough specimens that will be forgiving. The following five plants are tough, happy indoors, and mostly require minimal care.
1. Peace Lily – This popular plant likes medium to low light, and prefers to be under-watered. It comes in both miniature and full-sized varieties, with new hybrids offering flowers in pink to red shades, as well as the original white.
2. Mother-in-Law’s Tongue – or Snake Plant. The strong vertical growth and variegated leaves create a strong sculptural effect, particularly with massed plants. It likes low light, watering every two to three weeks, and will be quite happy pot-bound.
3. Devil’s Ivy – Another variegated plant, this one can be grown in a hanging container or trained up a post. It can put up with a lot of neglect, only needs watering once a week, and is happy in low light. It can be lightly pruned for bushier growth.
4. Dragon Tree – This taller plan is particularly good in contemporary spaces. It can get quite tall and makes an excellent statement plant. It likes a bright spot near a window, but only requires a monthly soak – and should be left to dry out between watering.
5. Umbrella Tree – This is a retro gem that was very popular in the 1970s and is now regaining favour. It comes in plain and variegated varieties, and there is also a miniature variety. It likes indirect sunlight and requires more water than the other four – water weekly and spray the leaves frequently to give it some humidity.
A selection of these plants can offer you contrast and textures to create a lush environment in larger outdoor rooms. Alternatively, a single large specimen in a smaller space can create a focal point. Matching the style of plants in your outdoor room with your interior décor and landscaping will help you create a seamless transition between your house and garden.