Flowerbox PLUS: Matt visits the NY Botanical Garden

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So I am the Met Flowers Matt, and I have been very missing in action. I work mainly for one department here and we have been extremely busy. No time to stop and smell any roses...

This past weekend I visited the NY Botanical Garden in the Bronx. If anyone is thinking of adding plants to their environment, this is a very inspiring and educational place to visit. Their main garden shop is free to visit and includes indoor and outdor plants, a very good bookstore, and many beautiful planters and vases. Beyond this, it is part of a beautiful complex that is perfect for enjoying a picnic. walking through the gardens, and visiting the indoor greenhouses and library.

The best part about the shop is that everyone is very friendly and jam-packed with know-how. Even a novice like me was not overwhelmed.

The greenhouse manager, Erik, even offered to look at a sketch of my apartment and suggest what might grow best in my environment.

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Their bookshop may be dedicated to plants, but I was surprisd at the variety. There were interior design books geared towards plantenvironments, recipe books, flower arranging, travel, growing and care, art - you name it. It was a whole world centered on plants.

Buying for the indoors can be intimidating - and frustrating when you make the wrong choices.

Apartment-dwellers need to understand their apartment's yearly cycle and buy plants that can thrive in that environment. The indoor section of the shop had wonderful selections of low-light plants that would look beautiful in any apartment. The real stars were the different ferns (like the stag horn fern in the pictures) and the palms. They all can survive in diffused light. The gorgeous outdoor trees and plants that many people want to have most likely will not thrive indoors because they need to feel the seasonal changes in environment - this is why tropical varieties do better indoors: they LOVE constant heat and cannot stand temperature drops.

Another lesson to be learned was that these beautiful plants can dress up even the shabbiest of tables or cabinets. The plants displayed indoors were in and on so many varieties of planters and furniture. Plants have a magical ability to make any environment invigorating and welcome. A plant can add a little humanity to your interior. It can improve your air quality. It can also make a beautiful aesthetic statement.

A trip to the Botanical gardens is a great start to inspire and motivate. You may prefer to shop elsewhere, but the Botanical Garden is a wonderful research facility - not to mention a great day trip for those looking to escape the city!

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Outdoor, Gardening

Maxwell left teaching in 2001 to start Apartment Therapy as a design business helping people to make their homes more beautiful, organized AND healthy. The website started up in 2004 with the help of his brother, Oliver.

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