6 Expert Tips To Create The Perfect Plant Shelf

October 15, 2021 0 Comments

A green patch of our own is a distant dream for many a city dweller. A sunny windowsill is prime real estate for your indoor plants. And when the time comes that you run out of window space, going vertical via a plant shelf is a great way to showcase all of your plant babies.





Click ‘play’ to see my plant shelf video

Perfectly styled plant shelves are commonly found on Instagram with the hashtag #plantshelfie.These Instagram plant shelves look so effortlessly put together, but in reality, they aren’t always easy to curate. How do you style an indoor plant shelf? I just put my first plant shelf together and would love to share my learnings with you.

Read on to learn how to decorate a plant shelf in 6 simple steps. With tips and ideas on pots, placement and how to choose your plants.

1. Choose the Right Shelf

The shelf is most important as it will determine the overall look of your plant shelf. A natural wood shelf gives a totally different vibe than a metal shelf. When choosing metal, even choosing between a wrought iron finish and a steel or chrome- finish shelf changes the final look drastically. Wood and metal work very well in their own way with real greenery. Personally, I prefer meant-for-outdoor, weather proofed material, so I chose a wrought iron shelf. Wood will need periodic staining and polishing, extra work which I didn’t want to take on. 

Before you buy, look around your home first. Decide what will be the perfect shelf for your space that complements your existing home decor and theme.

If you have enough floor space, you can style a shelf, or a few shelves, in a bookcase, or opt for a rolling cart with wheels or a plant ladder. In smaller areas you can save space by choosing a floating shelf or tiered wall mounted shelves on the wall.

TIP! Make sure the location of your shelf has sufficient light for your plants . No dark corners for sun-loving plants. Plastic shelves are a big no.

2. Select a Variety of Plants

The perfect plant shelf has a variety of different plants.

Pick houseplants with attractive leaf shapes, patterns, and textures to add visual interest. Mix around leafy plants with statement plants, and plants that grow upward with plants trailing down your shelf. I love low-maintenance plants that require little watering like the snake plant, the ZZ plant, Aloe Vera, the money plant and some fast growing and trailing succulents like the jade plant and the tangled heart. 

Grouping plants raises the humidity around them. Which is a bonus for many houseplants originating from humid tropical rainforests.

Don’t forget the importance of the planter pots. I am a big fan of sculptural ceramic and terracotta pots and tin vintage planters. But use what you have, or enjoy a pretty planter shopping spree.

TIP! Mind the colors of your pots, keep it simple. You don’t want a chaotic color scheme to detract from the beauty of the plants.

3. Look Around The House Before You Shop

While a shelf filled with plants and plants only can look absolutely wonderful, and I absolutely applaud it, adding a few accessories will personalize the appearance of your shelf.

You don’t have to spend a dime on this if you look around your own home.

At this stage, just gather all the items you love and think would fit in. Don’t worry about collecting too many things for the shelf. Arranging and editing items out comes next.

What to put on a plant shelf besides plants? Plant related items like a watering can, a pretty vase are great. And think about maybe adding a few books, souvenirs, pretty shells, or picture frames. You might have a letterboard. Put a plant quote on it. It’s going to be perfect! I added a welcome sign, some river pebbles, a plant spritzer and different watering cans. 

TIP! Space Saver! Create an indoor vertical garden on a wall shelf. All your plants will be off the floor and you free up space!

4. It’s All About Striking A Balance 

Here comes the fun part. Adding in the accessories, moving them around, swapping them out to find the best arrangement.

Group items and layer plants behind other plants to create depth. Vary the size and scale of the items. Play around with the placements.

This process will take a bit of trial and error. Sometimes all it takes is moving one item a few inches left or right to make the overall look feel more balanced.

TIP! Don’t add in too much extra stuff. The accessories shouldn’t overwhelm the plants. You want the plants to be the focal point of the shelf.

5. Less is More

Now that everything is on the shelf, take a step back and look at it with a critical eye. Does it look too cluttered in any spot? Be tough and thoughtful. You might need to make some hard choices like taking out one of your favorite pieces. 

TIP! Not every available spot on the shelf needs to be filled with something. Leave some open space and give your plants some room to breathe.

6. Take a Plant Shelfie (shelf+ selfie)

Once you are happy with how your plant shelf looks, it’s time for the final step. Snap a plant shelfie and share it with your friends.

Plant Shelf or doing up any part of your home is a lot more than just a decor activity. I feel that a person’s house-their home, the space in which they live, will reflect the same amount of pride that one feels towards oneself, so yes, it is very important that a person feel proud of their dwelling. It should be a refuge from the world outside, a comfortable and safe place (the best one can afford) filled with things that are pleasing to you and that reflect who you are. A place that is functional and makes one feel embraced when they enter. And as such I believe a person should be careful and selective in the kind of things they bring in to the house and the kind of people they associate with and welcome into their space-some people have good vibes from the higher levels-and leave their vibes behind after they’ve gone. One’s house should always be clean with fresh air circulating throughout-its like the body in that it feels better and a person thinks clearer when the air is clean. 

Happy Gardening!