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Green Living: Create an Oasis of Home-Grown Plants and Herbs

Green Living: Create an Oasis of Home-Grown Plants and Herbs
9 May 2024 Samantha Anderson
Contura Green Living: Create an Oasis of Home-Grown Plants and Herbs RoosterPR

Lifestyle expert, Catharina Björkman, shares guide to growing your own to reinforce connection with the natural world and boost mental & physical health.

With lighter, longer days and the promise of warmer weather on the horizon, we start noticing changes in the natural world, but how we can embrace and incorporate the abundance of life and colour into our homes?

Lifestyle expert at Contura, Catharina Björkman, says: “Growing plants at home is one of life’s simple pleasures. It reinforces our connection with the natural world and is mentally, physically and emotionally rewarding.

“Growing plants can help purify and improve air quality, reduce stress, boost mood and even encourage healthy eating. Not to mention the innate sense of satisfaction that comes with caring for plants and growing your own food.

“Whether you have indoor space, a balcony, a garden or an allotment, tending to plants is a therapeutic activity the whole family can get involved in.”

Read on for Catharina’s complete guide to growing your own…

A kitchen herb garden

There’s nothing better than the scent of fresh, aromatic herbs in the kitchen. Basil, chives, mint, sage, rosemary and oregano are all easy to grow at home, don’t require much space and will be appreciated by cooks and diners alike.

To keep herbs leafy, use a general-purpose liquid fertiliser, as well as an occasional dose of liquid seaweed, which will help boost their flavour (but don’t worry, your herbs won’t taste like the sea!).

Edibles like lettuce, microgreens, tomatoes, and spring onions also grow well indoors, don’t require vast amounts of space, and are especially handy in the kitchen. One of life’s simple pleasures has to be serving up a fresh, healthy salad made up of ingredients grown entirely at home.

A bathroom oasis

Abundant, leafy plants that thrive in humid conditions are ideal to grow in the bathroom and really brighten up what typically tends to be a largely unadorned or sterile space.

Spider plants are one of the most popular houseplants and do particularly well when grown in a bathroom. Easy to care for, they boast air purifying qualities – absorbing a range of gases and toxins – and are both pet and child friendly. They are also extremely easy to propagate. During the summer they produce tiny white flowers on long stems with baby spider plants called ‘pups’, which look like tiny spiders (hence the plant’s name). Once the pups take root, simply snip the runner (the stem connecting the pup to the main plant) and place the pup in a glass of water for up to five days to help the roots grow out before planting in its own pot. Invest in one spider plant and you’ll never have to buy another.

Aloe vera thrives in bathroom conditions and doesn’t require too much attention or water. As a bonus, it has medicinal properties, with its sap helping to soothe skin conditions including burns, scrapes and grazes. Simply snap off a small part of the leaf and squeeze the healing gel onto your skin.

The warm, humid conditions of a bathroom also make it the perfect location for trailing ivy. It looks best when displayed on a shelf with the leafy tendrils tumbling down.

A sleep-promoting haven

A bedroom should be an oasis of calm, free of tech and full to the brim of beneficial plants.

Snake plants are easy to care for, only requiring a light watering every now and then and a dose of liquid fertiliser once a month in spring/summer. They also have air purifying qualities. During the day, snake plants absorb oxygen from their surrounding environment before releasing it come night-time, making it the perfect addition to any bedroom.

The glossy green leaves and beautiful white blooms of the peace lily add a nice touch to any room, but its ability to remove toxins and allergens from the air make it ideal for growing in your bedroom. Peace lilies grow best in well-lit spaces and should only be watered when the top inch of soil is dry. To test this, carefully push your finger an inch into the soil – if it’s damp, no need to water.

The calming scent of lavender, known to promote sleep, is a lovely addition to any brightly lit bedroom no matter the decor. It’s worth noting that this plant will only last a few months indoors before needing to be re-planted outside once the flowers fade, but don’t worry, you’ll be re-rewarded when it blooms outdoors the following year.

An abundant balcony

Scented flowering plants like jasmine are ideal for growing on a balcony. Picture balmy summer evenings with glass of wine in hand and the soft scent of jasmine filling in the air. Pure bliss.

Herbs are also great to grow on a balcony, but different kinds thrive in different conditions. If you have a sunny balcony, try planting thyme, sage, rosemary or chives. Whilst mint, dill, parsley and coriander do best in shadier conditions.

For those with a sweet tooth, there’s nothing more satisfying than growing strawberries. This summer favourite is easy to grow in pots, containers or hanging baskets, and is best planted in mid-spring or late summer/early autumn.

Outdoor bliss

You don’t need a lot of outdoor space to enjoy growing plants outside. Potted plants – such as red acer, aster, roses, periwinkles, pansies and wallflowers – and hanging baskets filled with petunias, geraniums or verbena, can help spruce up even the sparsest outdoor areas. To give the illusion of a bigger space and more greenery, strategically place mirrors around your garden or patio.

If you have a bigger garden or are lucky enough to have an allotment, a low maintenance ‘wildflower patch’ can help promote soil health, biodiversity, and will also benefit native wildlife and insects.

Growing fruit and vegetables is a great way to get kids involved in gardening, caring for nature and can also encourage them to try new foods. A greenhouse provides a protected environment for plants to thrive – runner beans, tomatoes, leafy greens, chillies and berries are great options for even the smallest of greenhouses.

And, whilst a day spent in the garden tending to plants is the perfect excuse to enjoy a well-earned soak in the bath, if you find it a physical strain, consider investing in some raised beds, which will enable you to reap the benefits of growing your own without the back ache.

Growing plants really isn’t something to fear. If you’re concerned you have black fingers as opposed to green, it’s worth heading to a garden centre or plant shop where staff can help you work out which plants will thrive in your home and garden and can advise you on care instructions.

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Notes to editors:

  • Rooster PR will coordinate comment, interview and profile opportunities for Contura UK Country Manager, Phil Wood.
  • The Contura PR team will also arrange visits to the nearest Contura Design Centre dealerships or the Contura showroom in Doncaster to see the product range.

For further press information, please contact:
Tilly Everard | Elsa Findlay | Julie Aguilera
T: +44 (0)203 440 8930
E: [email protected]

About Contura:
Contura is Europe’s leading manufacturer of wood burning stoves, offering an extensive range of classic and contemporary wood burners; from traditional insert stoves suitable for existing fireplaces, to freestanding statement models made with innovative materials such as soapstone.

Starting at £1,495, Contura stoves are premium yet affordable. Award winning, timeless Swedish design means the products complement or enhance any style of home, whilst also offering outstanding performance, maximum efficiency, practicality and ease of use.

Designed and assembled at the factory located in Markaryd, Sweden, and manufactured to the highest standards, Contura stoves are highly energy efficient, offering powerful convection, superior combustion technology and clean burning systems. All Contura stoves are DEFRA Clean Air Act exempt and thus approved for use in Smoke Control Areas.

Contura stoves can be purchased through a network of 165 independent retailers nationwide.

Contura is part of the NIBE group, a Swedish manufacturing company producing world class solutions in sustainable energy across Europe, North America, Asia and Australia.

Contura is a founding member of the Stove Industry Association (SIA) in the UK.

Contura is a proud supporter of Eden Reforestation Projects’ efforts to restore and monitor over 241,150 hectares of land, creating jobs to support local communities and the environment in the long-term. Since 2018, Contura has funded the planting of over 170,000 trees.

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