A lush green garden, laden with flowers and leaves is a treat to the eyes. The concept of gardening is centuries old, in modern times the concept of vertical gardening is gaining worldwide acceptance.1 Having your own vertical garden is advantageous in many ways, they help save space, cover up the ugly walls and improve the air quality.2
A vertical garden is basically a concept of growing plants on the walls. Vertical gardening works well for both indoors and outdoors.
Many people worry that maintaining vertical garden is tough and you need to spend hours watering them, however, you can solve this problem by installing drip irrigation system with hoses and timers or you can go for a basic one with holes at the bottom that allows water to drip down.3
A vertical garden can be built both indoor and outdoor. Depending upon your garden’s location you can choose from a variety of plants that are ideal for vertical gardens.
Here is a list of 21 plants that are most suitable for vertical gardens:
1. Plants For Indoor Vertical Garden
- Lipstick Plant (Aeschynanthus radicans): The lipstick plant has waxy and pointy leaves. It’s a must for any indoor vertical garden, the lipstick plants bright red flowers will lighten up your space throughout the year. Lipstick plant does not require full sunshine, it can even adjust to lower light levels. Lipstick plant can also bear dry conditions.
- Pothos (Epipremnum aureus): According to NASA, Pothos is one of the few plants that helps improve indoor air quality.4 It is ideal for indoor vertical garden as it grows well in low-light and removes benzyne and formaldehyde from the air.
- Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum wallisii): Peace lily loves shade and they adapt well to lower humidity. It blooms for the most part of the year. When their flower ages they turn green. Peace lily is a good option if you are looking for indoor vertical garden plants with little maintenance.
2. Plants For Outdoor Vertical Garden
- Croton (Codiaeum variegatum pictum): Croton is an excellent choice if outdoor vertical garden is on your mind. Its leathery, bright and colorful leaves in varied shapes will brighten up your garden. The plant requires bright light and humidity, so water it on time and it will continue adding beauty to your garden.
- Limelight, bower wattle (Acacia cognata): Easy to maintain plant, just needs occassional watering. The plant loves full sunshine, it can also flourish in partially shaded zones. The plant can handle alkaline as well as acidic soil. The plant is evergreen and grown especially for its foliage. During spring the plant is known to give yellow flower heads.5
- Geranium (Geranium sp): Geranium recognized for its fleshy leaves and bright flowers can cope well with sunny situations. Thus, making it an ideal plant for outdoor vertical garden. They plant can be grown easily, they also add fragrance to your garden.6 The plant grows well in a wide range of pH soil and prefers drained out soil. However, don’t skip the regular waterings or it may wither away.
3. Decorative Plants For Vertical Garden
- Baby’s Tears (Soleirolia soleirolii): Low maintenance, bright green leaves and soft appearance, that’s the description of baby’s tears plant. The plant grows well in medium light, it can be planted indoors if there is enough sunlight or outdoors if the plant receives some shade.7 Also, make sure water is well-drained out. Its growth will be slower in winter season but it rebounds back in warmer seasons.
- Petunias (Petunia sp): They are one of the most popular flowering plant often grown for its brightly colored flowers. The plant requires little watering and can grow well in outdoors.8 Some variety of the plant blooms all year round, just maintain neutral pH of the soil and good drainage conditions.
- Purple waffle plant (Hemigraphis alternata): The plant is an excellent VOC remover.9 Its colorful foliage makes it an excellent decorative plant. Tiny flowers from the plant blooms during summer and spring. The plant can grow well in varying pH levels, just keep the soil fertile, moist, and well-drained.
4. Aromatic Plants For Vertical Garden
- Wax Flower (Hoya carnosa): A great flowering plant and a perfect fit if you have smaller space. It’s flowers are star-shaped and sweetly scented. Wax flower can tolerate bright light and is a perfect for those planning an outdoor vertical garden. The best part is, you can grow it in any direction of your choice.
- Sweet Alyssum (Lobularia maritima): Tiny flowers in clusters and beautiful aroma, sweet alyssum is all you need for a wonderful vertical garden. This plant is tolerant to direct sunlight and requires slightly wet soil.10 Sweet alyssum does not need constant nourishing, however, ensure a proper drainage for the plant.
- Wedding Vine (Stephanotis floribunda): As the name suggests, wedding vine is widely used in weddings for its great fragrance. Its large white tubular flowers will add the much-needed beauty to your vertical garden. Wedding vine grows well in fertile soil which is rich in peat moss and loam. Also, the plant needs moist soil, so make sure to water them on time. Wedding vine’s beautiful fragnance is surely going to make you happy.
5. Plants That Purifies Air
- Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum): They are among the easiest to grow and requires very little maintenance. Spider plant is great for indoor vertical garden. These can be planted in outdoor vertical garden as well, however, avoid planting them at the top. Plant them in middle or bottom so that they are well-protected against direct sunlight. Spider plants are useful for removing indoor pollutants.11 They greatly reduce pollutants such as xylene and formaldehyde.12
- Boston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata): According to researchers, Boston fern removes more formaldehyde than any other plant.13 These plant prefer shaded region, ideal for indoor vertical garden. Grow them in your indoor vertical garden and breathe clean air. Boston fern prefers humidity, keep their soil moist and they will grow without any additional care.
- Aloe Vera (Aloe barbadensis miller): Aloe vera is one of the few plants with multiple uses. Aloe vera helps improve immunity system, they also prevent signs of aging.14 Aloe vera is an excellent plant for purifying your surrounding air.15 Aloe vera plant needs bright light, thus making it an ideal plant for outdoor vertical garden. Aloe vera plants cannot survive in standing water, so make sure that there is plenty of drainage holes.
6. Plants That Repel Insects
- Basil (Ocimum basilicum): Basil is a plant with multiple uses, it’s a great herb used in kitchen and it acts an an excellent insect repellent too. Plant them in medium size pot in rich soil and keep it away from the direct sunshine. Basil is a strong herb that keeps the bugs and mosquitos away. It is also toxic to mosquito larvae.16
- Peppermint (Mentha piperita): It was once indigenous to Europe, now it is cultivated worldwide.17 Peppermint grows best in moist and shaded region. Plant them at the lower level of your vertical garden so that it receives shade, and the water rundown from top will keep its soil moist. Peppermint keeps away the whiteflies, squash bugs, mice and rust plant disease.18
- Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia): Lavender is an excellent plant to keep away the moths, flies, and scorpions. In kitchen, lavender can be used for dressing and as a condiment. Lavender likes a warmer climate and sunshine, so here you have another reason to build an outdoor vertical garden. It grows well in slightly alkaline soil which is little dry.19
7. Plants For Your Kitchen (Veggies And Herbs)
- Coriander (Coriandrum sativum): Its leaves are widely used for garnishing purpose and its aromatic seeds are used for cooking. The plant requires sunshine and is perfect for those planning an outdoor vertical garden. Just water the plant when the soil is dry and you’ll have fresh herbs for garnishing!
- Parsley (Petroselinum crispum): Pasta, salads or soup, fresh green parsley is used everywhere. It’s an ideal plant for both indoor as well as outdoor vertical garden. It needs average watering and grows well in fertile and well-drained soil.
- Tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum): Red, ripe and juicy, tomato is at its best when its fresh. The only way to be sure of its freshness is grow them in your own vertical garden. Tomatoes require adequate watering, they thrive well in warmer zone and requires full sunshine.
|↑1||Asia: Vertical Gardens Gain Popularity for Greening Populated Cities. Asia Green Buildings.|
|↑2||Pictures: Green Walls May Cut Pollution in Cities. National Geographic Partners, LLC.|
|↑3||How to Grow a Vertical Garden. Real Simple.|
|↑4||MESHRAM, ANJU, and NIDHI SRIVASTAVA. “EPIPREMNUM AUREUM (JADE POTHOS): A MULTIPURPOSE PLANT WITH ITS MEDICINAL AND PHARMACOLOGICAL PROPERTIES.”2, no. 2 (January 10, 2015): 21-25. Accessed June 01, 2017. https://innovareacademics.in/journals/index.php/jcr/article/view/4398/5252.|
|↑5||Brueggemeier, Esther. ACACIA STUDY GROUP NEWSLETTER 100 (March 2008): 1-13. http://anpsa.org.au/acaciaSG/acacia100.pdf.|
|↑6||GERANIUMS. Yankee Publishing, Inc.|
|↑7||Soleirolia soleirolii. Missouri Botanical Garden.|
|↑8||PETUNIAS. Yankee Publishing, Inc.|
|↑9||Five super ornamentals identified for cleaner indoor air. American Society for Horticultural Science.|
|↑10||Sweet Alyssum. Cornell University.|
|↑11||Spider Plants. Yankee Publishing, Inc.|
|↑12, ↑13, ↑15||Wolverton, Bill C., Anne Johnson, and Keith Bounds. “Interior landscape plants for indoor air pollution abatement.” (1989).|
|↑14||Surjushe, Amar, Resham Vasani, and D. G. Saple. “Aloe vera: A short review.” Indian journal of dermatology 53, no. 4 (2008): 163.|
|↑16||Maurya, Prejwltta, Preeti Sharma, Lalit Mohan, Lata Batabyal, and C. N. Srivastava. “Evaluation of the toxicity of different phytoextracts of Ocimum basilicum against Anopheles stephensi and Culex quinquefasciatus.” Journal of Asia-Pacific Entomology 12, no. 2 (2009): 113-115.|
|↑17||Peppermint: Health Benefits, Precautions. Healthline Media UK Ltd.|
|↑18||MINT. Yankee Publishing, Inc.|
|↑19||Nichols McGee, Rose Marie, and Maggie Stuckey. “Bountiful Container: Create Container Gardens of Vegetables, Herbs, Fruits, and Edible Flowers.” (2002).|