The Plant Life Balance app helps people get more plants into their life, and shows how they look good – and make you feel good. What was your role in producing the app?
I was engaged to produce the visuals – creating the images that illustrate the eight different ‘looks’ on the app – Sharehouse Heroes, Desert Dreams, Jungle Vibes, Formal Luxe, Freestyle, Child’s Play, Birds and Bees, and Fantastic Feasts – and then also to pull together the plant list and do the horti stuff around that.
Did the looks come together in a studio or on location?
All on location, shot over an intense three days, with photographer Daniel Shipp and stylist Alicia Sciberras. It was a big logistical thing – we had three GoGet vans packed full of pots and plants and bits and pieces and moved them in and out. The plants were from wholesaler Alpine Nurseries, and Garden Life provided the bones and bling in the form of pots. For the Formal Luxe style, I was channeling Richard Unsworth!
Chanelling a Garden Life vibe, the Formal Luxe look on the Plant Life Balance app puts together a magnolia, bromeliads, clipped balls of box and pots os sprawling shore juniper.
Didn’t some of the residents say – wait! – leave that great plant!
Well, yes, we shot Desert Dreams at a friend’s house and she fell in love with the aloe and bought it and a few other things. That meant we didn’t have to lug them back down the stairs, which was great!
One of the features of the Plant Life Balance app is that it rates indoor spaces for air quality and wellbeing, based on the number and variety of plants, with five medium-sized plants in a medium-sized room offering 75 per cent cleaner air and a big boost to mental wellbeing. How do your indoor spaces rate?
My new place on the Hawkesbury River is pretty much maxed out because all of the plants that we had in our shady Marrickville courtyard are now inside to protect them from possums and wallabies. So there are hoyas and rhipsalis hanging from the rafters and it’s very light indoors so everything is going wild. It’s going to be a jungle!
The Plant Life Balance app was a side project and your full-time job is running the fabulous on-line garden magazine/blog The Planthunter. Have you always wanted a life in plants?
I think I’ve always had one, without thinking too much about it. As I’ve gotten older I’ve realised how important it is to be connected to nature, as deeply as you can be, in a way that feels right to you. For me it’s very important.