Building Your Home | 31 July 2015

Top 10 indoor plants

by Carlisle Homes

A popular inclusion on our Top 10 Accessories list, indoor greenery and foliage is making a welcomed resurgence in the world of interior styling. Maybe it’s our love of all things retro, compensating for a trend of minimalist outdoor gardens or longing to be closer to nature, either way it’s time to develop your indoor green thumb. More than just a few micro herbs on the window sill, we are seeing big, bold indoor plants with impact creating stunning statement pieces as well as smaller subtle additions to soften design lines.


Indiana on display at Featherbrook Estate, Point Cook

Healthy homes
We all know how important trees are in providing valuable oxygen and purifying our air, the principle is pretty much the same indoors. There have been studies to suggest that including living foliage in your home can filter out some of the toxins (VOCs) that are emitted from the various materials and finishes such as carpets, paints, furniture and even cleaning and beauty products. In addition, just like beautiful external gardens, plants in our homes can create a sense of peace and relaxation for your family – your very own sanctuary.

Choosing the right plant
There really aren’t any true indoor plants, but rather variations that can survive with limited light and fresh air and the fate of forgetful owners. It’s important to consider a few different options to make sure you choose the right green friends for your home and lifestyle. The wrong plants in the wrong rooms will leave you with a mess and a big hole in your wallet! Our interior styling team share their Top 10 plants to add some life to every room in your home.

Rooms with lower levels of light such as bathrooms, hallways and even bedrooms are best matched with shade tolerant plants. Here’s a hint, the darker the green colour of the leaves the less light they require because they are more efficient at the photosynthesis process!


Granada on display at Selandra Rise, Clyde North
Manuka on display at Trillium Estate, Mickleham

1. Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree

    This is the hot new star of the indoor plant world, beautiful lush leaves that can complement a diverse range of decor styles. But be prepared to wait, this popular green item is in demand and you will probably have to place an order with your local nursery.


Images sourced from Pinterest

2. Zanzibar gem

    The new comer to the indoor plant world, this gem is extremely hard wearing, the perfect starter for those trying to have a greener thumb…



3. Kentia Palm

    This Australian native palm is equally at home both indoors and outside, and is perfect for those dark corners, it’s a versatile accessory!


From left: The versatile Kentia Palm, Peace Lily, Lady Palm.
Images sourced from Pinterest

4. Lady Palm

    This little lady is a dwarfed variety and slow growing, so is perfect to add some textural foliage to liven up a room.

5. Peace Lily

    This glossy leaved beauty looks great on a counter top or table, ideal for the bathroom.
In rooms with brighter light such as living zones, kitchens and even alfresco areas, choose plants with lighter coloured or patterned leaves

6. Bromeliads

    This exotic indoor plant comes in a variety of textures and colours to choose from and is very low maintenance!


Left: Colourful bromeliad, Right: Interesting zebra plant
Images sourced from Pinterest

7. Zebra Plants

    This one can be a bit temperamental and lose its leaves if not given the right attention, maybe for the more attentive home owner!

8. Prayer Plants

    An interesting visual feature with leaves that close at night, as if in prayer, hence its name.

9. Song of India

    The striking green, lime and gold leaves of the Dracena reflexa work best in rooms with a bit more light and are well known for their abilities to absorb nasty toxins from the air inside your home.


From right: Song of India and Prayer Plant
Image sourced from Pinterest

Of course, we can’t talk about indoor plants without talking about the stunning orchid.

10. Phalaenopsis Orchids

      Don’t be scared of these beautiful orchids, which have become very popular house warming gifts. Big news is they don’t like wet feet, so best tip is to just spray the leaves with water a few times a week. They do need good light and to be fed often, they are a hungry décor item!


Indiana on display at Somerfield Estate, Keysborough

Care and maintenance
Something you probably didn’t know is that it may be necessary to gradually introduce your plant to its new home to allow it to acclimatise! If your new plants have come direct from a temperature controlled nursery or glasshouse they are probably used to lots of water and fertilising. So, for the first few months you may need to keep up with the plant food and gradually wean them off, no cold turkey! The correct light levels are very important and you may find you need to rotate your green friends every now again to keep them lush and healthy. And give them an outing outdoors every now and again for some fresh air, UV and sunlight, after all we all feel healthy after a dose of vitamin D!

The general rule with watering is to only add moisture if the top of the soil feels dry, and for some such as succulent and cacti varieties, minimal water is required. For the best results always stick to the instructions on the label, and consider checking out the handy self-water pot options!


Self-watering plant pots from Ikea

For the green thumb novices…
Let’s face it, not all of us are blessed with a green thumb! For those of us with talents in other areas there are different ways to inject a bit of living green into your rooms. Think artwork, cushions, and wallpaper!


(Image inspiration sourced from Etsy, Pinterest and West Elm)

Indoor plant art
Don’t be limited by traditional pots and vases, indoor greenery can be in the form of stunning wall art and sculptures. Make your art work for a purpose with living herbs in your kitchen for easy picking and adding to your culinary creations.


Images sourced from Home Life

Mini eco-systems
If you are keen to embark on the indoor plant look but worried about the care and maintenance involved a terrarium may be the answer for your home. Terrariums are pretty much mess-free, require minimal care and attention and are very transportable. If you are really adventurous, have a go at making your own – Build Your Own Compact Terrarium.


Image sourced from Pinterest

It’s a good idea to choose your pot first to suit your room, then purchase your plant to suit the size. There are some great inexpensive options to be found at Kmart and Ikea, or if you have a creative yearning, decorate some yourself!


Planter pouches from Kmart

Fresh cut foliage
You just can’t beat the effect of having fresh flowers or greenery in your home, but you don’t have to spend a mint each week to keep up this look. Simple traditional white daisies, roses or gypsophila create a fresh and simple style, while glossy green elephant ear cuttings bring a pop of rich colour to a neutral palette.


Carrington on display at Timbertop Estate, Officer


Vaucluse on display at Somerfield Estate, Keysborough


Viera on display at Williams Landing Estate, Williams Landing


Nevada on display at The Avenue, Cranbourne North

To experiment with themes and find your perfect signature interior style make sure you check out our new Inspire by Carlisle.  Be prepared to lose track of your time while you customise your home by choosing paint colours, bench tops, tiles and much more AND see it change in front of your eyes with Visualiser!  Explore the Carlisle Collections to get the low down on feature items for each of our unique display home themes, and build your own Moodboard to create a visual diary of all the ‘must haves’ for your new place.  And, because we promise you, you will be coming back for more, you can save all your favourites in your own Inspiration Book to share with friends and continue to refine, over and over again!

 For a behind the scenes experience and to get the scoop direct from the design team, be sure to follow us on Instagram, @Carlislehomes.

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