Indoor plants are having more than a moment. Good Earth Plant Company loves seeing so many people adding indoor plants to their home and work environments. It might be the one good thing coming from the pandemic. Since 1977, we’ve been big advocates for the power of plants to improve the quality of your surroundings, from cleaning the air to clearing your mind.
Plants are a lot like potato chips. You can’t have just one. It’s also true plants thrive when they are grouped together – and they look cool. But there’s only so much surface space to go around. You can add shelf space and place plants on your existing furniture (be careful with the watering), but at some point, you run out.
Things are looking up for you, plant lovers. We mean it. Look UP and consider adding indoor plants in the spaces available above you. There are many unused spaces above us in many buildings, with plenty of creative display options.
Embracing the overhead moment
Good Earth Plant Company’s clients are embracing what we like to call the “overhead moment.” Visitors to offices, restaurants, and retail stores will look up and be caught by surprise with beautiful, unusual displays of plants. Sometimes they’re real, and sometimes they are replicas in places where there isn’t enough light or where irrigation is challenging.
We recently worked with Open Air Vintage in Long Beach, a high-end sneaker and clothing retailer. The owners have embraced biophilic design in their beautiful store with big windows and honeycomb-shaped displays for their shoes. We designed custom workplace greenery displays, including overhead plants to their tall warehouse height ceilings, hanging along secured wires. We also created shoe display platforms using moss. We include them in this blog post because they’re so cool.
For an earlier project at a Southern California dispensary, we made use of one of the few spaces available in the business to display plants. We placed them on top of cabinets.
We hung planters underneath the glass roof over an outdoor patio at a downtown condominium complex and filled them with gorgeous flowers to provide a bright pop of color.
Hanging them high
Another method of using overhead space we love hanging walls to just like traditional works of art! Several years ago, we created a 24 foot long, eight-foot-tall replica wall for Qualcomm at one of its main employee dining rooms. The wall is in an area inaccessible for watering and routine care. Qualcomm decided to install an eight-paneled “artificial” wall of lush-looking replica plants. Installed almost 20 feet above the floor, the project presented some interesting challenges and required planning and safety precautions. Even 20 feet above the floor, our installation team made sure every seam aligned perfectly.
Maybe the ultimate “Overhead Moment” is a green roof. Good Earth Plant Company pioneered the use of green roofs in a Mediterranean climate. Our favorites: our very own corporate headquarters and the Fallen Star art installation at UCSD’s School of Engineering. It’s once again open for public tours after being closed due to the pandemic.
For those old enough to remember – and you know who you are – hanging plants aren’t a new concept. After all, one of the original Seven Wonders of the World was the Hanging Gardens of Babylon.
I sold my share of macrame plant hangers in the 1970s and into the 1980s. Boho chic was a fresh concept, and it was also a time when we became more aware of environmental issues. The first Earth Day took place in 1970, and it’s not a coincidence. Remember what went along with the hippie culture of peace and love? Nature, man!
1970s trends are back – even macrame
I admit some people did way too much of a good thing, and we got a little tired of macrame. But there was something else popular in the 1970s – recycling! There are fashion trends in the plant styling business, and they get recycled too. In a 1979 New York Times article, “indoor jungles” were starting to disappear because they were too much work for indoor gardeners to maintain. Tastes shifted to just one or two large “statement” plants, like a Ficus or Rubber tree. Cut flowers also became popular when costs dropped to import foreign-grown flowers out of season.
Fast forward to 2021. After the pandemic, we all have a much greater appreciation for a healthy indoor environment, clean air, and the power of nature in our surroundings. The boho, nature-inspired look is back. Now we have Instagram and Tik Tok to show it all off this time around!
Some of our favorite choices for hanging plants at your home or office:
- Pothos: The perfect trailing plant, easy to grow, and great for low light situations.
- Tradescantia Nanouk: A trailing plant with beautiful leaves in greens, purples, and pinks, and white. It was popular in the 70s and 80s, and we bet you’ll recognize it. It is native to Mexico and Central America and likes both shade and heat.
- Prayer plant: We bet your mom or grandma had a prayer plant back in the day. When they grow out, they drape nicely. They also tolerate low light.
- Spider plant: If you’re going for a classic, go all the way with this all-time favorite. Kids love replanting the “pups” which grow on runners.
- English Ivy: Another great plant for beginners.
- Philodendrons – Many different types to choose from.
Look around you right now. Isn’t there some overhead space you could put to better use? If you need more ideas, visit the Portfolio section of our website. Or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll create something unique just for you. We love to enrich peoples’ lives with plants at all levels.