10 Ideas to Inspire Your Indoor Garden|
Are you ready to become an indoor gardener? Whether you’re growing herbs for the kitchen or creating a cacti collection, you’ll find tips, tricks and inspiration below!
Building an indoor garden is a great alternative to growing outside, especially if you lack outdoor space or live in a harsh climate. We’ve curated a few tips to help your plants thrive inside, and we’ve compiled a number of indoor garden ideas to choose from.
Let’s get gardening!
Tips to Keep Your Indoor Garden Happy
Every plant is different. Some plants love the sun, and some love the shade. Some need humidity and others thrive in a dry environment. But almost all plants require water, sunlight and nutrients in varying amounts. Here are a few general tips to prepare you for indoor gardening!
Watering your plants is critical, but avoid overwatering. Be sure to research your plants in order to water them correctly and avoid root rot or drying out (here are some of the top plant-identification apps). Another important tip is to avoid watering with cold tap water because it can sometimes lead to root shock and cause permanent damage. Instead, use room-temperature water to hydrate your plants.
Plants require sunlight to complete the process of photosynthesis, which converts light, water and oxygen into energy. Energy is necessary for plants to grow, but not every plant needs the same amount of sunlight. Plants that love low-light conditions (like snake plants), should be placed far from windows, whereas plants that need a lot of light (such as herbs or succulents) will thrive on a sunny windowsill. If you’re putting plants in an area with insufficient natural light, consider a grow light.
Plants can absorb nutrients from soil, water or even air. Depending on what plants you choose for your garden, you need to ensure they get the nutrients they need. If you’re growing your plants in soil, consider a loose potting mix and look into fertilizer (or plant food) to help your indoor garden stay healthy. We’ll cover more of these options in just a few paragraphs.
Controlling the temperature and humidity of your indoor garden is crucial. Plants that love humidity and moisture may require a humidifier as well as a hygrometer to monitor humidity. Moisture-loving plants can also thrive in enclosed terrariums or mini-greenhouses (more on small, DIY greenhouses below).
Ideas for your Indoor Garden
Now that you have basic knowledge about plant care, it’s time to decide what kind of indoor green space you’d like to build! Check out the ideas below for inspiration for your indoor garden.
1. Ultimate accent wall
Create a unique statement piece with a living wall! This solution takes up minimal space and can include a large number of plants. Be sure to pick a space in your home that receives natural light from a nearby window, and choose plants that have similar water and light requirements. Some plants to consider including in your living wall are pothos, philodendron or dracaena plants.
There are a variety of different plant wall systems as well as many DIY options. If you’d like to build your own plant wall, consider using landscape fabric or chicken wire for the foundation. A living wall made of plastic has a higher chance of success because it is much more durable.
Some systems also include a watering system, allowing for easy maintenance. Although much more convenient, this solution can be expensive. If you’d like to build your living wall on a budget, you can manually water your plants. (Just be careful not to overwater!)
2. Grow some herbs
Growing an indoor herb garden is a great way to bring plant life indoors, and ensure you have fresh herbs for cooking year-round! Consider placing your herbs on a kitchen windowsill for easy access, or hanging your herb garden to save counter space. It’s important to research which herbs you’d like to include, so you can follow their specific growing instructions.
Some popular herbs that will do well indoors include oregano, thyme, basil and chives. Grow your favorite herbs and enjoy fresh foods!
3. Eat your veggies
Nothing beats the taste of fresh fruits and vegetables, especially if they’re grown at home—or in your home in this case. When planting your fruits and veggies, be sure to choose a pot or container that gives them enough room to grow. You’ll also want to ensure there is a drainage hole at the bottom, and invest in a grow light so your plants get sufficient light.
A few veggies to grow at home include leafy greens, carrots, potatoes and peppers. Cherry tomatoes can also be grown indoors, just ensure they get at least eight hours of light every day. Try your luck at growing fruit trees indoors! Consider a lemon, orange or fig tree.
4. Go hydroponic
What is hydroponic gardening? Essentially, it’s gardening without soil, so it’s perfect for your indoor garden (less mess). But, even small, simple hydroponic systems can be an investment. The cost can vary from $50 to $500, depending on size and features.
Nutrients are dissolved in water and then absorbed by the plants. This method actually makes it easier for plants to get nutrients, ensuring they grow quickly. Common plants that can be grown using this method include leafy greens, tomatoes, herbs, berries or annual flowers. Many hydroponic systems will include a water pump, light, seeds and more, but you can also build your own. Here is a guide to make your own hydroponic garden!
5. Collect cacti
If you don’t have a green thumb, you may want to start with a cacti collection! These succulents are pretty tough. They require little care and they’re drought-tolerant (in case you forget to water them), but most cacti require at least 10 hours of light a day.
There are a variety of unique cacti to choose from, in a range of sizes. You can decorate your windowsill with a dozen small prickly fellas, or invest in a large cactus as a conversation piece (like the Mexican fence post cactus). Be sure to keep these plants away from children or animals, some cacti are spiky!
6. Awe with air plants
Air plants are fascinating. Similar to hydroponic gardening, air plants do not require soil to grow. But they need more than just air. Air plants still need sunlight, and they should be watered about once a week. You can mist your air plants with water (using a spray bottle), then set the damp plant on a towel for a few hours to dry. Or put them in a bowl of water for about 20 minutes, then place them on a towel to dry before putting them back where they belong.
Since air plants do not require soil, you can display them almost anywhere. Consider placing them in a glass container and hanging them, putting them in a terrarium, or making magnets with them.
7. Propagate your plants
The best part about propagating your plants is you can increase your plant collection easily, without spending any money! One of the more popular methods of propagation is by water. Simply take a cutting of your plant (directly below a node to ensure roots will grow), and then place it in water. Once the roots are about two inches long, you can re-pot your new plant.
While propagating your plants, consider creating a designated area to display your cuttings. Use a variety of clear jars and a wide range of cuttings to make a statement wall.
Here are some tips to learn how to propagate your plants!
We don’t mean the elegant, glass buildings that sit on your property. We’re talking about a smaller, indoor greenhouse that can be constructed with a little creativity!
Consider converting an old display cabinet or curio cabinet into a greenhouse, or purchase a new glass cabinet to present your beautiful indoor plants! It’s a good idea to include grow lights in your indoor greenhouse, as well as a humidifier and a fan. Check out this greenhouse made from a restored cabinet!
Air plants aren’t the only plants that can thrive in a terrarium. You can also design a terrarium with succulents, certain ferns and even carnivorous plants (like a Venus Fly Trap). Keep in mind that plants that grow quickly or have large leaves are not well-suited for a terrarium.
Most terrariums are enclosed, but they can also be open to the air, which is great for succulents. Or, create an enclosed terrarium of carnivorous plants for an interesting and unique indoor garden! Just be sure to research each individual plant, and choose plants with similar needs. Here is an article with ideas of what to feed your carnivorous plants.
10. Indoor/outdoor garden
Extending your garden both inside and outside your home will create the illusion of a larger space. Consider a living wall inside, next to your patio door, and place many large plants on your deck. When the door is open, the garden will seem to expand to your outdoor space and extend your living area!
FAQs: Indoor Garden Ideas
Q: How do you build a small indoor garden?
A: To build a successful indoor garden, you must make sure you find the right space, and provide your plants with adequate sunlight, water and nutrients. For a quick and easy setup, consider getting a small indoor garden kit for hydroponic gardening. These typically include all necessary materials, and many even include seed pods to get started.
Q: Can you have an indoor garden year-round?
A: Yes! One of the advantages of an indoor garden is that you can control the temperature and humidity, allowing for plants to thrive year-round.
Q: What are the disadvantages of indoor gardening?
A: There can be a few disadvantages of indoor gardening, for example, the soil and water can occasionally make a mess, and certain plants can be poisonous to animals.
Q: What is the easiest thing to grow indoors?
A: Some easy plants to grow indoors include herbs, snake plants and pothos.
Let it Grow: Indoor Garden Inspiration
Are you inspired to start your indoor garden? We hope with a little general knowledge of plants and a few creative ideas you feel confident and ready to start growing!
Will you put a collection of succulents in a terrarium, or try your luck at hydroponic gardening? Let us know in the comments below! While you’re building indoor greenhouses or making room for your new plant pets, self-storage can come in handy. Store Space offers secure storage units around the U.S., just use our storage finder to locate your nearest facility. (But don’t store your plants in a storage unit!)
Sarah Dirks is a Content Writer for Store Space who enjoys watching movies, being active and cheering for the Boston Red Sox.