Indoor plants add a living, growing touch to your home. Sometimes they complement the scene outside your windows, bringing the feel of your garden inside; other times, especially in apartment buildings, they are the only garden in sight. Either way, you want to put inside plants in places where they'll thrive--and where they'll add to your decor.
Scout locations for your houseplants before you go shopping at the nursery. Decide which rooms would benefit from the addition of plants--for instance, you may have a bare-looking kitchen counter or an empty side table in the living room. Don't forget bathrooms, too; they get a lot of moisture and can be hospitable spots for greenery.
Look at each location over the course of a day to determine how much light and moisture the area gets. Take notes so you can get the most appropriate plants--if a spot gets full sun in the afternoon, you don't want a shade lover; if a plant is to go in a bathroom, make sure it likes a steamy environment.
Envision what height and shape each area needs, and look in gardening books or head for the nursery to see which plants fit the bill. If you want to fill an entire shelf or window seat, you may want to vary the size, color and texture of the plants--for example, put gray foliage next to dark green for contrast. If you're trying to hide an unattractive view, consider full, spreading options such as ferns.
Choose a variety of pots and planters that complement your plants and the decor of the room. You'll find decorative porcelain and bronze wagon-shape planters at websites such as simplyplanters.com; sleek fiberglass and metallic pots at indoorflowerpots.com; and sculpted resin planters at plantcontainers.com.