Every year about this time, we look forward to the first post-frost weekend to set our sights on livening up our outdoor spaces. This year, we decided it was time to take our plant styling up a notch, so we turned to our favorite local plant resource, Fern Shop. Owner Megan Strasser is a former stylist, and she has transformed what was once a service station into a very zen plant destination we’d happily move into if she’d let us. Since she has more than 10 years experience working with plants, we were eager to tap into her expertise.
When we dropped in on her, Megan was busy readying plants to ship for online orders. Without dropping what she was doing, she greeted us and started sharing her plant wisdom. “Fern is at its best in the spring. You start to see a lot of variety in the plants … they’re flowering … they’re bright. Everything wakes up.” A quick look around the shop echoed her statements – everything was teeming with life, and most plants were spilling over the edges of their containers.
For all of these planter arrangements, Megan used plants that will thrive outdoors through the summer, but can be moved indoor, come fall. If you live in a warmer climate, they can sunbathe outside year-round (lucky!).
“I’d place this on my patio next to a low lounge-y area. It has a very relaxed vibe.”
The Apollon Planter is filled with a pencil cactus, strings of pearls, wooly rose echeveria and a variety of succulents. Shelter from direct sun.
“This stunner should get lots of attention. I’d place this smack in the center of an outside dining table.”
The Italian Bowl Tabletop Planter is filled with cacti and a variety of succulents, including echeveria, fish hooks and burro’s tails. This combination should be sheltered from rain and intense sun.
“This planter is such a statement piece. I’d love to see it next to a pool, where you can view it from every angle.”
The Torndo Planter is filled with sprengeri ferns, an anthurium (for a pop of color) and a dieffenbachia. The anthurium will bloom throughout the year.
“I’d place this right in my entrance or on the edge of the patio to help frame the space.”
The Finn Square Planter houses a tropical dracaena.
“I’d place this somewhere it can help define your space, like the entrance to your home or deck.”
The Quentin Rectangular Planter is filled with cordylines, a bird’s nest fern, a pothos and bromeliads.
When it comes to plant beginners, Megan suggests taking it slowly. “The biggest mistake people make when starting out with plants is choosing something fickle, like a fiddle leaf fig tree. I like to start people off with a snake plant. If they keep that alive, I’ll graduate them to a ZZ plant”, she says. “Not all plants work everywhere – it’s important to go to a knowledgeable shop or greenhouse and ask a lot of questions.”
MEET MEGAN OF FERN
My favorite plant is …
Today? The schefflera plant. It’s easy and playful. Ask again tomorrow, and it’ll be something else.
I opened Fern because …
I wanted to create a place combining my love for handmade objects and plants.
When I’m not at the shop, I can be found …
Somewhere outside with my children or running errands for the shop.
I’d rather host a party than attend because …
Hosting a party is like what I do here at the shop – creating an environment for people to interact with … and I love doing that.
My signature emoji is …
I need two. I use these together all the time.