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Indoor Parterre

Martha Stewart Living, May 2003

Dress up a houseplant gift with this presentation inspired by French parterres -- gardens that typically contrast low formal beds of greenery with tall ornamentals. We set a potted Meyer lemon tree inside a larger container and filled the outer ring with mondo grass. (A rosemary or myrtle topiary bordered with baby's tears also makes a pretty combination.)

Tools and Materials
Small potted tree or topiary
Broken pot shard
One pot, larger in diameter than the one holding the potted tree
Pea gravel
Fast-draining potting mix
Small grassy plant

Indoor Parterre How-To
1. Before inserting inner pot, place shard over hole of larger outer pot, and add 1/8 inch gravel for drainage. Position potted tree in center of large pot; fill around with potting mix.

2. Divide the grass into plugs, and plant by poking into the mix around perimeter. Place arrangement on a saucer.

Comments (3)

  • 1Toffy 3 Apr, 2008

    Great idea...I have Mondo Grass growing outside and that looks exactly like what the picture shows for the grassy plants. Great Idea for indoors...And the Mondo Grass doesn't like direct sun.My pic is of my Night Blooming Siris (Cyris) These succulents flower only one night and that is it. You can have several blooms in one night.The flower is nearly 10" across with a beautiful intoxicating fragrance. The flower closes and dies in the morning sun. I had to mention that.

  • 1Toffy 3 Apr, 2008

    Great idea...I have Mondo Grass growing outside and that looks exactly like what the picture shows for the grassy plants. Great Idea for indoors...And the Mondo Grass doesn't like direct sun.My pic is of my Night Blooming Siris (Cyris) These succulents flower only one night and that is it. You can have several blooms in one night.The flower is nearly 10" across with a beautiful intoxicating fragrance. The flower closes and dies in the morning sun. I had to mention that.

  • cassiecase 3 Apr, 2008

    This is a great idea for my houseplants to make things feel a little more lush around here!