Peace lily: Houseplant of the Month for May
Soft and friendly in on-trend green and white – the peace lily offers everything to make a space calmer so that you can take a breather.
The stylish peace lily offers a full clump of soft, dark pointed leaves with elegant white bracts in between. These are often thought to be flowers, but the actual flowers are tiny and on the spike. There are modest windowsill-sized peace lilies, but also indoor bushes a metre tall. They are all elegant plants with a friendly appearance. The rich green foliage seems to mute all external stimuli and the white pennants surmount the leaves peacefully and serenely, as if the plant is encouraging you to sit down and say ‘time for a break’.
‘May I have a drink please?’
One nice thing about the peace lily is that it communicates with you very clearly. If the soil is too dry, the stems and leaves will droop dramatically. If you then give it some water, it will be fresh and lively again an hour later. In exchange for your care this houseplant also cares for you: it’s one of the plants with air-purifying qualities according to the NASA Clean Air Study. In order to really benefit you would need some eight plants with a 15-20 cm pot size in the average home. The amount of soil is important, because microorganisms in the soil also absorb small quantities of air pollutants.
The peace lily fits with a lifestyle trend that revolves around consciously not looking at a screen from time to time, but simply finding peace. Fewer stimuli and more tranquillity. Preferably in comfortable surroundings with soft fabrics and nurturing elements. A group or row of peace lilies can then easily provide an attractive buffer against the outside world, to retreat behind in order to be able to carry on with fresh energy.
How to keep your peace lily looking beautiful
- Peace lilies like a light spot, but not in full sun.
- They cannot tolerate the cold well – a room temperature of 18-22 °C is perfect.
- Peace lilies like slightly damp soil and some plant food once every three weeks.
- A plant spray or tepid shower will make the peace lily think it’s back in the rainforest.
- You can remove wilted flowers to encourage the plant to bloom for longer.
‘And breathe out’
Turn your home into an oasis in white, nudes and powder pastels, with the peace lily’s greenery as a contrast. Decoration is kept to a minimum and can be delicate and wispy. To create the sense of a personal retreat, add lots of round cushions and a soft throw, together with voile curtains that filter the light. Peace lilies look best in matt pots with at most an abstract pattern or the suggestion of a face and a couple of bright crystals or precious stones such as rose quartz nearby.
- The peace lily is a member of the Arum family and grows in the tropical rainforests of Colombia and Venezuela.
- The peace lily’s scientific name is Spathiphyllum. That is derived from the Greek: ‘spath’ is a spoon, ‘phyl’ means leaves – a reference to the spoon-shaped leaf.
- As the name suggests, the peace lily is known as a bringer of peace: the white flower represents the white flag which is recognised internationally as a truce signal.
For more information see: www.Thejoyofplants.co.uk
Published on: 21 April 2020