Display Houseplants With Autumn-Toned Foliage

Bring the palette of the season inside with these great-looking plants.
Ellen Ruoff Riley / Photography: Joseph De Sciose

 There's always room for a little freshening up, and houseplants are a great way to do it. Choose one or all of the philodendron selections shown here, and enjoy their autumn-toned foliage as a seasonal accent. 'Prince of Orange,' 'Moonlight,' and 'Black Cardinal' offer easy arranging options, either en masse or individually.

Choose a complementary decorative container and accessories. We used a wooden dough bowl (found at a flea market) and a basket to hold the plants. Add pomegranates, candles in autumnal shades, nuts, persimmons, or even oak leaves for extra interest.

Think Odd Numbers
Our collection of philodendrons works well together for several reasons. Consider these design tips when making your own arrangement.

  • We included three plant selections. Using two appears awkward, but a trio is visually pleasing and balanced.
  • Staying within the same plant family gives the arrangement a unified look. The leaf shapes are the same, with only the colors varying from one to the next.
  • When you have room for only two in a container, don't use a pair of the same plant. Choose different types, such as a philodendron and a peperomia. Then, you'll still be working with odd numbers--one of each.
     

Planting Directions
To do this, first line your container with a plastic trash bag to protect it and your furniture from excess moisture. Then, arrange the pots as you like, and fill in around them with decorative sheet moss to hold them in place. Once a week or when they're dry, place the pots in the sink, and water them thoroughly. When drained, replace them in the dough bowl. Notice the candles and pomegranate resting on a wooden cutting board below the bowl. The board protects the table and continues the wooden container idea.


 Take Care

Philodendrons are so easy. Here's all you need to know.
Light: Place them in a bright location but not in direct sun.
Water: Keep soil slightly damp. Don't allow plants to sit in saucers of water.
Grooming: Every few weeks, wipe off their broad, shiny leaves to keep them free of dust and insects.
Enjoy the shades of the season with these easy, colorful autumn houseplants.


"Display Houseplants With Autumn-Toned Foliage" is from the October 2005 issue of Southern Living.