Tagged: Grow

An Indoor Oasis

January 22, 2015


Though winter is bringing gray skies and snowy days to our neighborhood this week, we're feeling bright thanks to an indoor oasis of vibrant, green plants in a sunny corner of the house. Perfect for adding freshness and color to the entryway, an enclosed sunroom, or the bath, a mixed collection of potted plants makes all the difference in our mood as we wait for spring. Read on to learn more about our favorite specimens creating for a calm and inspiring midwinter oasis.

Agave: Native to the deserts of Mexico and the southwestern US, this popular perennial can grow for decades before its single flowering. Its distinctive, rosette shape and spiky fronds make it an architectural addition to indoor gardens. Slow-growing and easy to care for, agave will flourish for years in a sunny spot.

Calamondin Orange: A hybrid species believed to descend from Mandarin oranges and kumquats, the Calamondin orange is primarily an ornamental fruit tree. Native to the Philippines and Malaysia, this dwarf citrus prefers temperatures from 55-70 degrees, making it ideal for indoor growth. Its petite fruit-- each orange is about 1" in diameter-- can be eaten, but its tart flavor and the difficulty of harvesting the oranges make it more popular as a decorative plant.

Olive Tree: A tolerance to dry air makes olive trees one of our top picks for indoor gardening during the winter months, when artificial heat can be tough on moisture-loving plants. This Mediterranean native prefers full sunlight and a planter filled with fast-draining soil. Slim, gray-green leaves lend visual appeal year-round, and you can look forward to clusters of small, white flowers in the summer months before fruit appears.

Thyme: A classic from the kitchen garden, we planted this evergreen herb at the base of a potted olive tree for added visual interest and a hint of clean fragrance. Even better for an indoor oasis, thyme is used in aromatherapy for benefits that include stimulating the mind, strengthening memory, and calming nerves.

String of Pearls: An eye-catching succulent that's easy to cultivate indoors, we love String of Pearls for the way it drapes over the sides of our favorite planters or hanging baskets. Its bead-like leaves will flourish in bright sunlight, and can be pruned as needed; choose stems that look dead or have lost many of their leaves when pruning. 


A Foraged Bouquet

November 24, 2014

At Home
, Grow


As cold weather brings gardening season to a close, we're looking for creative ways keep blooms in our homes throughout the winter. One of our favorite ways to bring the garden indoors is with dried and preserved flowers found at home or in favorite foraging spots. With foraging in mind, we asked Georgia florist Mandy O'Shea of Moonflower and 3 Porch Farm to share a found and preserved bouquet to close out the season. She teamed up with friend and photographer Rinne Allen to shoot the results. We loved working with Mandy and Rinne this spring, and they impressed us once again with their gorgeous flowers and photos. Read on for our chat about the foraged bouquet above.

terrain: What are some of your favorite flowers to grow for preservation?

Mandy: Some of the more common flowers that preserve well are gomphrena, strawflower, sunflowers, celosia, amaranth, yarrows and others, however I find that I am becoming more drawn to drying different textures. One of my favorite textures (which is in the featured arrangement) is a radish variety named Rat Tail. Their seed pods are both great fresh for eating and wonderful for drying. Grasses are also a good choice to dry. Once some grasses dry, I notice that they plume out a bit. I am constantly experimenting with drying to see what works and what doesn't.

Rinne: While I do not specifically grow flowers for drying, I walk around my garden this time of year and bring cuttings inside that last for months...many of them have already gone to seed or dried on their own. Things I enjoy throughout the winter are Allium, Cardoon, Autumn Clematis seed pods, various grasses...and I love the way that deciduous magnolia leaves curl when once they have fallen to the ground.


Design by Terrain: A Fall-to-Holiday Centerpiece

With Thanksgiving just a few days away, we turned to the experts at Design by Terrain for tips on making a naturally beautiful centerpiece to finish our table. Ready to bloom in the coldest months of the year, amaryllis were their flowers of choice for a living display. Green thumb Megan M. created the amaryllis trough centerpiece above with more than just Thanksgiving in mind-- it's also the perfect planting to transition from fall into the Christmas season. Megan says, "Amaryllis work well in transitional containers because they give you vivid, green foliage at Thanksgiving, and amazing blooms at Christmas. Here, I paired the bulbs with pinecones-- an accent commonly used during both holidays-- and some sprigs of autumnal, orange winterberry. As you prepare for Christmas, swap the orange winterberry for a more festive, red variety. You could also tuck some fresh greens in for an extra holiday touch."


The Dirt | 2014 | week no. 47

The Dirt is our version of a weekly link roundup, where we share what's currently capturing our interest around the web. Hope you'll enjoy, and feel free to share what you're reading in the comments. We'd love to hear from you!

Drying tips from The New American Herbal for fresh herbs all year round. Author Stephen Orr will be joining us at the Holiday Open House in CT! (via Design*Sponge)

For readers in warm climates, a harvest-inspired Thanksgiving outdoors. (via The Kitchn)

The basics for growing a beautiful bonsai garden with expert Eric Schrader. (via Gardenista)

A seasonal appetizer perfect for pre-Thanksgiving snacking. (via PopSugar)

Watch a practical cabin come together in under two minutes. (via Avantika Agarwal)

Elegant and unexpected sculptural elements in gardens around the world. (via WSJ)

We're closing out tonight's dinner with this decadent dessert. Happy Monday! (via Sweet Paul Magazine)


Plant a Pumpkin Patch

October 31, 2014

Our Gardens
, Grow

Plant a Pumpkin Patch

Did you know that the heirloom pumpkins and gourds you picked out for festive decorating this fall can be used to grow your own pumpkin patch for next year’s crop? After Halloween, take your pumpkins outdoors and stow them in an out-of-sight location until they break down completely. Then, simply bury them no more than six inches deep in your garden before the first frost and cover with mulch. Throughout the winter, the fermented squash will spread their seeds in the soil, then begin to grow in the spring. Make sure you plant your pumpkins in an area with ample space, about 3-6 feet apart – they will need lots of room to spread their vines, which can grow up to 30 feet! Compost, ample fertilizer, lots of sunlight, and well-draining soil will ensure that your squash thrive. If you notice the soil getting dry, water immediately, as pumpkins are largely made up of water. However, note that overwatering can make them sickly; deep, infrequent watering yields the best result.

Our Product and Community Coordinator, Kelly S., put this method of pumpkin-growing to the test in her yard and harvested her crop from early August until late October. She says, “When the shell of your pumpkin has hardened and changed color, you’ll know it’s ready to harvest. Unfortunately, many of our pumpkins got stolen by hungry critters, so next year we plan to put up fencing and use other measures to keep pests at bay. Our favorite discovery was that the yellow flowers produced by pumpkin vines are edible – simply remove the inner parts and they’re a delicious top note on a frittata or a garnish for salads!”


Behind the Scenes: terrain's Living Wall

For a fall event at our headquarters, terrain Landscape's Fine Gardening team created a remarkable installation-- the gorgeous Greenwall above. Transforming an unused building on our campus into a blooming focal point, we're thrilled that this beautiful garden is now a permanent part of our landscape. We recently caught up with two people who brought the wall to life, nursery manager Greg O. and plant buyer Karen C., to learn more about how the project came together.

Greg O. tells us, "terrain's Creative Director, Greg Lehmkuhl, designed the Greenwall. He envisioned a harvest wall that would be at its most colorful during the event at the end of September. It's composed of 36 individual hayrack planters, arranged in 12 rows of three. A faux moss fabric lines the baskets to hold the soil, a potting mix from Organic Mechanics. Karen did a brilliant job of choosing and sourcing the plants to be used."


For a recent gathering at our offices, Design By Terrain crafted breathtaking floral arrangements that welcomed visitors with an abundance of blooms in fall hues. Folks from the office and guests alike were wowed by the overflowing urns, autumnal planters, and suspended orbs that decked out our event space. We asked the creator of these dramatic displays-- Installation Designer Matt M.-- to give us a behind-the-scenes look at his fall creations. Take a peek, above, of Matt with his works in progress, then read on for his insights about a few favorite pieces.

Hanging Orb: "These suspended pieces needed to be dramatic enough to create a presence within a large tent. We hung metal orbs that I filled with all manner of fall color and interest: amaranthus, willow, coleus, bittersweet. I wanted the base of the orbs to have a nest-like quality, so we used clumps of grass cuttings to give a wild feel."

Floral Urn: "I wanted to counteract the lush, saturated florals with foraged grass plumes and crabapple branches. The combination allowed for an amazing amount of texture and movement within the arrangements."

Autumn Urn: "I attached a wire orb to the top of a metal urn and filled it with armloads of fresh cuts in a muted palette for a twist on the bountiful cornucopia. A large piece of foraged tree root anchored the piece and added some unexpected verticality."


Habit + Habitat: Laura Harris Twilley

Ever wonder what the folks at terrain do when we're not in the nursery? In our monthly series, Habit + Habitat, we're finding out by asking one person to share a favorite habit and a beloved habitat. This month, we’re chatting with Art Director Laura Harris Twilley, the creative mind behind our photography and interactive design. Laura and her family recently moved out of the city, where she's growing a habitat-- a crafting garden-- inspired by her habit of making beautiful, botanical creations.

terrain: What is your role at terrain? Can you describe your typical day?

Laura: I’m Art Director of Photography and Interactive. A typical day entails conversations with the team about upcoming projects, looking at various visual references and pulling ideas together, going through the website, and finding areas to continually inspire and provide for our customer.

terrain: How did you come up with the idea for a craft garden?

Laura: During the fall last year, I moved to a home with yard for the very first time as an adult. I was so inspired by what I could create with the harvest all around me: wild berry vines, pinecones, seed heads, etc. I thought it would be fun to actually grow the materials for what I make.