Eight ways indoor plants can improve your home

In homes all over the world, particularly in Millennial and Generation Z households, the trend towards houseplants is booming. Gone are the days when a solitary yucca or Kentia palm occupied a corner of the living room. Now an abundance of plants and a much greater variety of species fill homes for their sumptuous, exotic effect—from the classic monstera deliciosa, better known as the Swiss cheese plant, to the sinister but ornate ‘Hannibal Lecter’ Neoregelia with its dramatic, green tiger-patterned eggplant and spiky leaves. Houseplants are just as important as the pieces of furniture in a room, and today’s plant growers are not only increasingly gardeningly savvy, but they also know how best to care and maintain plants to ensure they thrive.

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The craze dates back to 1970s homes—the revival of this retro macrame hanging ornament holder is kind of a giveaway. The ’70s loved Victoria, and the houseplant boom was a throwback to that era, too. The wide adoption of ecology for neighborhood-loving design and architecture — which highlights green spaces, water, fresh air, and natural materials and forms in interiors — is fueling this phenomenon.

“Social media promotes prosperity, as people who love plants are sharing pictures of them everywhere,” says Hilton Carter, US-based plantfluencer (horticultural influencer) and author of the new book Living Wild.

“The magic of houseplants stems from people’s desire to reconnect with nature,” says Emma Sibley, founder of London Terrariums, which runs workshops teaching how to make terrariums. “Throughout the lockdown, people have been glued to their screens while working from home, and they can’t just be in nature.”

Houseplants satisfy people’s qualities of care, she tells BBC Culture: “They’ve introduced rituals into the day that separate people from leisure time and allow them to take care of something that needs them.” We spoke to several plant owners to discover eight of the latest trends in houseplant design.

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