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BRING THE OUTDOORS INTO YOUR HOME

The sun might be shining at the moment, but the weather in Britain isn’t the most reliable, so get your fix of the great outdoors under cover suggests Kara O’Reilly 

Houseplants and indoor planting are having a renaissance. For more impact, group different sizes of pots together with single varieties of plants in them,’ says Ian Drummond, Creative Director of Indoor Garden Design. ‘And terrariums are making a comeback.

‘My favourite indoor plants include Succulents, which are fairly low-maintenance and really fashionable; Orchids, which like to be ‘neglected’; Ferns, because they like humidity and so are good in kitchens and bathrooms; and Ficus, a popular member of the Fig tree family, which is easy to grow and maintain. Herbs are great kitchen plants – although they need a little more care.

‘Be aware plants need natural daylight and do not do well in draughty rooms. Feed plants regularly from April to September with a houseplant feed, and avoid over-watering – a common mistake.’

The joys of flexible furniture

Summer entertaining is no longer confined to one area of the home and often involves using the kitchen, dining room and garden. To create a sense of unity between the areas, use complementary cushions, pots and decorative accessories.

‘Choose a couple of investment pieces such as a dining set and bench or a statement lounger to build your look around,’ says Nicola Gidlow, Buyer for Outdoor Furniture, John Lewis (johnlewis.com). ‘Extendable tables offer flexibility, while stacking chairs are great for space-saving when not in use. Woven furniture looks great both indoors and out. Synthetic wicker has the aesthetic of traditional garden furniture, but has durable colour-fast and sun-resistant properties that makes it a hard-wearing alternative to metal and wooden sets.’

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