Bring the Outdoors in with Succulents
More and more people are choosing interior designs that welcome the outdoors, incorporating natural elements in their home design. Using plants is a great way to enhance a space, and succulents are an increasingly popular choice for indoor plants. Let’s learn more about succulents and different ways of using succulents to decorate.
What Are Succulents?
While it is not a scientific name, the term “succulent” is used for a broad category of drought-resistant plants that store water in their leaves and stems. Because of this stored water, their leaves tend to have a firm, juicy, lightly waxy appearance. Many people use the term succulent to differentiate these drought-resistant plants from their prickly cousins, the cactus family.
Succulents live in nearly every climate of the world and can grow in dry and harsh conditions that are unsuitable for most other plants. Some especially hardy succulents can live for up to two years without a source of water.
There are a huge variety of succulents, with a broad range of plant sizes, colors, leaf shapes, growth habits, and flower types. They are a diverse, fascinating type of plant.
Why are Succulents Such Popular Indoor Plants?
Indoor plants have a huge range of positive effects on your mental and physical health, including helping to reduce stress and anxiety and improve concentration and creativity. However, many house plants can be difficult to care for, with very specific requirements for lighting, watering, soil, and other needs.
For people without a lot of time and experience, watching a plant wither and die can be discouraging. On the other hand, succulents are near-ideal indoor plants, and using succulents to decorate is incredibly easy, for these reasons:
- Tolerant of neglect. Succulents do not require a lot of water, but, even more importantly, they are tolerant of periods of neglect and inconsistent care. They are a great choice for people who travel frequently or have hectic schedules that don’t leave a lot of time for plant care.
- Easy care. Succulents are not fussy about soil quality, and will usually grow or stay small to fit the size of the container they are planted in. Unlike houseplants that need fertilizer, soil amendments, frequent repotting, and other maintenance, succulents take virtually no time at all.
- Versatile light conditions. Like most house plants, succulents do like light. However, they do not usually need direct sunlight, and many species will thrive in indirect lighting conditions. This makes them suitable for a variety of different indoor conditions, where they do not always require space in a sunny window.
- Visually striking. Succulents are visually impactful plants. Their geometric shapes are often arranged in fractal patterns, and they have a sculptural structure that creates some of the same visual appeal as a work of art. Succulents also group well together, so you can cluster them into the same container and create different visual effects.
- Wide range of species and growth habits. Succulents can be massive or miniature, climbing or trailing, soft or spiky, and everything in between. Whether a space lends itself to hanging trailing plants, large statement trees, fragrant flowers, or tiny tabletop decor, there is a succulent that fits the bill.
- Easy to propagate. It is incredibly easy for even amateurs to propagate most succulents from cuttings, so you can easily create the dense succulent garden of your dreams.
- Living air purifiers. Finally, like some other houseplants, many succulent species are excellent indoor air purifiers, filtering carbon dioxide and toxins from the air, and releasing pure oxygen.
It’s no wonder that people who want all the beauty and benefits of plants in their interior design, without committing themselves to hours of time-consuming care and maintenance, choose succulent decor instead.
How to Decorate with Succulents
There are hundreds of ways to enhance your interior decor with succulents. Here are some of our favorite succulent decor tips:
- Hang trailing succulents high. Hanging long, trailing plants from a high place will visually elongate the space, drawing the eye upward and making the ceiling or windows look higher. Trailing succulents are a great way to magnify a smaller space and make it look larger. Some of the best trailing succulents for indoors include:
- Burro’s tail (Sedum Morganianum)
- String of hearts (Ceropegia Woodii)
- Ruby Necklace (Othonna Capensis)
- Create a succulent centerpiece. Because succulents can easily be grown in the same container, and don’t require a lot of space for their roots, they can be clustered together into a dramatic succulent garden, perfect as the centerpiece for a dining or coffee table. You can create an indoor succulent rock garden, terrarium, or zen garden that makes a statement anywhere, or use succulents to create an indoor living wall. Best succulents for indoor tray gardens include:
- Haworthia varieties
- Crassula varieties
- Aeonium varieties
- Keep it small. A tiny succulent adds immediate charm to any environment, and miniature varieties will never outgrow their surroundings. Consider placing a small succulent on a desk or nightstand, in a guest room, or anywhere that needs a little bit of life and cheer. Some of the best mini succulents are:
- Miniature Echeveria (Echeveria Minima)
- Baby Jade (Crassula Ovata)
- Zebra plant (Haworthia Fasciata)
- Get creative with containers. Succulents can grow in shallow trays, little cups, glass bowls, and nearly any other container you can think of, provided it has great drainage or you water with care. This creates great opportunities for making a statement with your plant containers, which can be repurposed from your favorite finds, or chosen to match your decor.
How Can J.Fisher Help?
Indoor plants and succulents are only one of the ways to create indoor spaces that are beautiful, healthy, and natural. At J.Fisher, we are inspired by nature and believe in creating interiors that reflect your unique personality. Our award-winning, full-service design firm brings joy and harmony down to the smallest details. Contact us for more information about making beautiful spaces that incorporate nature and fit into your lifestyle.
J.Fisher Interiors’ studio is located in east Austin. To schedule your consultation appointment, please fill out the contact form or call us at 512.954.0904. We would love to hear from you!