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  • Writer's pictureDebbie DeMarais

Bring Green Life Into Your Home With a Living Wall for Earth Day

I love being out in nature, especially on such a celebrated day to honor the Earth. It reminds me to slow down and enjoy Mother Nature, connecting with her inspiration.


As an interior designer, I have to ask, how can I bring this beauty and serenity into a home?

One of my favorite ways to invite nature indoors is with a living wall. Sometimes called a vertical garden, a living wall is an indoor garden installed vertically on a relatively sunny wall in your home. The gardens consist of a collection of low-maintenance plants such as succulents, ferns, or low ground cover. It can be as small as a few herbs on the wall in a kitchen or an artfully arranged grouping of a few plants hung in wall-mounted planters. Living walls can also be as involved as large-scale installations designed with a water feature.

What are the benefits of a living wall?

Installing a living wall creates the feeling of serenity and brings nature close to home. It incorporates interior design elements of color, texture, and pattern and becomes a live art installation in an urban setting. I love how it “lives indoors” and not only changes the feel of a room, but how you interact and connect within your environment.

And then there are the numerous health benefits. Studies show a biophilic living wall encourages our innate need to be outdoors and provides a positive impact on health, well-being and energy, and reduces stress.

There’s a reason living walls are popping up everywhere. If you’re in Santa Fe, you can see the 14-foot high and 20-foot wide hydroponic plant living wall in the main entrance of the Health and Sciences Center at the Santa Fe Community College. It not only helps clean the air, it’s beautiful too.

The endless inspiration of nature

Of course, there’s no substitute for being in nature.

Take a walk in the forest and look around. There’s inspiration everywhere. As you walk you can feel the strength of the trees. You’ll find intricate patterns in the tree bark, feel the delicate threads of deep green moss as it entwines with roots and blends effortlessly with mulch from fallen leaves. Notice the contrast of bright green shades of new growth as it mixes with the deep tones of mature plants. Feel the warmth of the sun’s rays as they cross between branches. Effortlessly, nature’s design encourages you to let go and be revived, energized, and connected.

A living wall allows us to bring some of that effortlessness, inspiration, and serene renewal into our homes. Even a small fraction of nature’s sustenance can go a long way.

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