There are many interior landscape architecture specialists operating around the world today who will readily create a dramatic bespoke interior vertical garden for anyone with the right will and the right wallet. But if your budget is as limited as your horizontal space, the good news is that there are an increasing number of small companies specialising in producing plug ‘n play solutions for indoor plant feature walls. In fact, they now come in almost all shapes and sizes.
Companies like the Swedish firm Greenworks have developed a number of interior solutions for the plant lover entirely in keeping with the needs of contemporary urban living. In addition to the more permanent fixtures of plant walls that can be hooked up to your plumbing for ease of irrigation, they also produce mobile plant walls. Effectively a combination of a good old-fashioned plant trough and the virtual garden idea, these easy-to-install systems can soon see you on your way to a vertical indoor garden that serves an additional function of a living space divider and easily moves when you do.
If you’re more cautious about your commitment to becoming an indoor gardener, perhaps the best place to start is with Alexis Tricoire’s Babylone. One-part hanging garden, one-part light fitting, the design combines Scandinavian modernism with eco-hippie sci-fi chic. Developed for plants that only require watering every three weeks, this really is the best option if you’re perpetually on the road. The on-board lighting source –obviously useful during those dark Scandinavian winters– means a simple addition of a timer switch and your little vegetable babies will still be green and resplendent when you walk through the door after a punishing tour of duty.
Allowing the plants to take over the furniture, fittings or any space available seems the only logical next step after the vertical plant wall. Among Greenworks’s more recent additions to the catalogue is Grey to Green, a series of perforated paving stones that mean that you don’t have to see your love for Brutalism and your love of living organisms as mutually exclusive.
Furthermore, as any of you who bought into that 90’s obsession with wooden decking will know –as you spend the weekend using reapplying outdoor varnish because you really have learned what “biodegradable” means– it’s another ideal solution for those high on their love for green things and low on time to devote to it. Consisting of a set of four paving stones, each with a different number of perforations allowing nature or cultivation to take hold, there’s something almost Japanese about this one; a highly aestheticized, asymmetrical interplay of ‘dead’ and living materials not unlike the philosophy at the heart of ikebana. If you’ve ever wondered what to do with your tiny city garden, pave it with these beauties and have the best of both worlds.