September 14, 2023

Conservatory Gardening: Best Plants for a Garden Room

Imagine a lush oasis filled with vibrant plants, where you can unwind and reconnect with nature in the comfort of your own home. Conservatory gardening allows you to create such a sanctuary, combining the beauty of the outdoors with the warmth and convenience of an indoor space. This comprehensive guide will walk you through everything you need to know about creating the perfect garden room, from understanding your conservatory’s environment to selecting the ideal plants and designing your dream oasis. Let’s embark on this journey to transform your conservatory into a breathtaking garden retreat.

Key Takeaways

  • Understanding your conservatory’s environment is essential for selecting optimal plants.
  • A mix of tropical, Mediterranean and desert species creates diverse visuals in a garden room.
  • Careful design decisions can transform a conservatory into an oasis with statement pieces and functional additions such as water features and shelving units.

Understanding Your Conservatory Environment

A thriving garden room is rooted in comprehending the distinct environment of your conservatory. The optimal conservatory plants for your area are influenced by light, temperature, and humidity levels. A conservatory can experience extreme temperatures, with hot summers and cold winters. Hence, choosing plants that can acclimate to these fluctuating conditions is vital. Replacing your existing conservatory roof with conservatory roof panels will minimise temperature fluctuations

When choosing plants for your heated or unheated conservatory, it is essential to consider the temperature requirements of each plant. For example, pincushion cacti can tolerate cooler winter temperatures down to 41°F (5°C), making them suitable for both heated and unheated conservatories. Additionally, citrus plants, such as kumquats, can thrive in a conservatory if humidity levels are maintained by misting regularly or placing them on a saucer of gravel topped up with water.

Selecting the Perfect Plants

Now that you’ve assessed your conservatory’s environment, it’s time to choose the perfect plants to create a diverse and visually appealing garden room. To achieve this, consider incorporating a mix of tropical wonders, Mediterranean marvels, and desert dwellers into your conservatory.

Tropical plants like Fiddle Leaf Fig, Monstera, and Rubber plants bring a sense of lushness, while Mediterranean species, such as Olive Tree, Lavender, and Rosemary, evoke the charm of sun-soaked landscapes. Desert plants like Cacti, Succulents, and Aloe Vera offer a striking contrast and can tolerate cooler conditions. These are some of my favourite plants for indoor and outdoor spaces.

Merging these diverse types of plants will result in a vibrant and dynamic garden room that flourishes throughout the year.

Tropical Wonders: Fiddle Leaf Fig, Monstera, and Rubber Plant

Tropical plants are known for their natural air-purifying properties and their positive effect on mental wellbeing. Fiddle-leaf figs, Monstera, and Rubber plants are popular tropical wonders that can thrive in your conservatory garden.

Each of these plants requires:

  • Bright, indirect light
  • Watering when the top inch of soil is dry
  • Fertilising biweekly during the growing season
  • Repot every two years to encourage healthy growth.

Incorporating these tropical wonders into your conservatory will provide glossy green foliage and establish a calming atmosphere for your garden room.

Mediterranean Marvels: Olive Tree, Lavender, and Rosemary

Mediterranean plants evoke the charm and warmth of sun-soaked landscapes, making them an excellent addition to your conservatory garden. Olive trees, lavender, and rosemary are popular Mediterranean marvels, known for their intoxicating scents and beautiful foliage.

Olive trees can be trained along wires fixed to a conservatory wall and should be pruned after flowering to encourage more blooms, including the possibility of red flowers. Lavender and rosemary thrive in full sunlight and well-drained soil, requiring deep but sparing irrigation.

These aromatic herbs and purple flowers not only add visual appeal to your garden room but also provide delightful scents that will transport you to the Mediterranean.

Desert Dwellers: Cacti, Succulents, and Aloe Vera

Desert plants, such as cacti, succulents, and aloe vera, offer a striking contrast to the lush tropical and Mediterranean plants, making them an intriguing addition to your conservatory garden. These desert dwellers can tolerate cooler conditions and require less maintenance than most plants.

Cacti, for instance, thrive in full sun and need minimal watering. Aloe vera, with its smooth leaves and soothing properties, prefers a warm, sunny conservatory with some shade in the summer.

Including desert plants in your garden room will result in a visually compelling space with a varied assortment of plant life.

Designing Your Garden Room Oasis

Designing your garden room oasis involves strategically utilising vertical space, creating focal points, and balancing various plant shapes and sizes. By incorporating climbing plants and hanging baskets, you can maximise vertical space and add visual interest.

Statement pieces and large specimens can serve as focal points, drawing the eye and showcasing unique plants. And by combining various plant shapes and sizes, you’ll create a balanced and harmonious conservatory garden.

Through careful design decisions, your garden room will transform into a beautiful oasis that highlights your meticulously chosen plants, creating one of the most stunning garden rooms in your neighborhood.

Utilising Vertical Space: Climbing plants and Hanging Baskets

Maximising vertical space in your conservatory garden can be achieved through the use of climbing plants and hanging baskets. Climbing plants, such as ivy or passionflower, can be trained along wires or trellises to create a lush, green wall, while hanging baskets filled with vibrant flowers or trailing foliage add an extra dimension to your garden room.

Employing vertical space not only enables you to display more plants but also forms an attention-grabbing arrangement that enhances the aesthetic appeal of your conservatory.

Creating Focal Points: Statement Pieces and Large Specimens

Statement pieces and large specimens are essential for creating focal points in your conservatory garden. These eye-catching plants draw attention and provide a visual anchor for your garden room.

For example, a large potted bird of paradise plant (Strelitzia reginae) with its striking blue-green leaves and sky blue flowers can create a lush, tropical atmosphere in a warm conservatory. Strategically locating statement pieces and large specimens in bright light will result in a visually engaging garden room that accentuates your favorite plants.

Balancing Elements: Combining Various Shapes and Sizes

A well-balanced conservatory garden combines the best conservatory plants of various shapes and sizes to create a harmonious and visually appealing space. Consider incorporating plants with oversized leaves, such as the fiddle leaf fig, alongside smaller, more delicate plants like succulents or ferns.

This mix of textures and sizes adds depth and interest to your garden room, making it an inviting and engaging space for relaxation and enjoyment. By carefully selecting and combining plants, you’ll create a garden room that is both visually captivating and a serene retreat.

Caring for Your Conservatory Plants

Proper care is essential to ensure the health and longevity of your conservatory plants. This includes mastering watering techniques, providing the right nutrients, and pruning and repotting as needed.

A well-tended garden room will not only be a beautiful and inviting space but also a thriving, healthy environment for your plants. Let’s explore the essential care techniques that will keep your conservatory garden flourishing year-round.

Watering Techniques: Frequency and Amounts

Watering your conservatory plants properly is crucial for their health and survival. As a general guideline, water plants regularly when the top few centimeters of compost in the pot have become dry.

During the winter, it is important to reduce watering frequency, especially for unheated conservatories, as most plants are not actively growing during this period. Overwatering in cold compost can lead to root rot, which can be fatal for your plants.

Mastering the suitable watering techniques for your conservatory plants will guarantee their health and well-being all year round.

Feeding and Fertilising: Nutrient Requirements

Providing the right nutrients is essential for the growth and development of your conservatory plants. Many plants, such as citrus trees, require a specialist citrus feed to thrive. Others, like the String of Pearls plant, benefit from a half-strength balanced liquid fertilizer applied approximately three times from spring to fall.

Comprehending and fulfilling the nutrient needs of your plants will enhance their health and vigour, guaranteeing a flourishing and attractive conservatory garden.

Pruning and Repotting: Encouraging Growth and Health

Pruning and repotting are essential practices to encourage growth and maintain the health of your conservatory plants. Pruning helps maintain the shape of your plants, promotes new growth, and eliminates dead or diseased branches. It is best to prune conservatory plants during the late winter or early spring period, and some may even benefit from pruning in early summer when they are in a dormant state.

Repotting provides your plants with fresh soil and increased root growth potential, and it should also be done during late winter or early spring. Regular pruning and repotting of your plants will bolster their health and augment the beauty of your garden room.

Tackling Common Conservatory Plant Challenges

Maintaining a healthy garden room requires addressing common challenges such as pests, temperature fluctuations, and humidity levels. By identifying and tackling these issues, you’ll ensure the health and well-being of your conservatory plants.

Investigate solutions to these prevalent challenges to ensure a thriving and lively garden room.

Pest Control: Identifying and Treating Infestations

Pest infestations can be detrimental to the health of your conservatory plants. Common pests include aphids, mealybugs, and spider mites. Identifying the type of pest and employing the corresponding treatment are crucial steps in addressing pest infestations.

Physical removal, chemical pesticides, and biological control, such as introducing beneficial insects that feed on the pests, are all effective methods for treating infestations. Maintaining a vigilant watch over your plants for signs of pests and acting swiftly when necessary will result in a healthy and pest-free conservatory garden.

Temperature Management: Maintaining Ideal Conditions

Managing temperature fluctuations is essential for conservatory plants, as they typically require specific temperature ranges to flourish. Temperature fluctuations can induce stress in plants, resulting in wilting, yellowing, and leaf drop.

To manage temperature fluctuations, maintain your plants’ ideal temperatures by using a thermostat for regulation. Additionally, you can use fans to circulate air and window coverings to block out direct sunlight, helping to maintain a comfortable temperature for your conservatory plants.

Humidity Solutions: Improving Air Quality and Moisture Levels

Maintaining optimal humidity levels is essential for the health of your conservatory plants. Many plants thrive in a humid environment, and proper humidity levels can improve air quality and help prevent pest infestations.

To increase humidity, you can use a humidifier, mist your plants regularly, or cluster plants together to create a more humid microclimate. Addressing humidity challenges will help in creating a conducive and comfortable environment for your conservatory plants to flourish.

Multi-Functional Conservatory Gardens

A multi-functional conservatory garden can serve as a yoga studio, serene retreat, or edible garden, providing a versatile and enjoyable space for relaxation and rejuvenation. By incorporating elements like calming plants, mindful plant selections, and simple designs, you can create a garden room that caters to your specific needs and preferences.

Explore some ideas to transform your conservatory garden into a multi-purpose haven.

Yoga Studio: Calming Plants and Relaxing Ambiance

Creating a yoga studio in your conservatory garden can provide a calming and rejuvenating space for relaxation, meditation, and exercise. Incorporating calming plants such as lavender, rosemary, and jasmine can contribute to a tranquil atmosphere, while soft lighting and soothing music further enhance the ambiance.

Selecting plants and design elements that foster relaxation will establish a tranquil yoga studio in your garden room, a place to unwind and connect with nature.

Serene Retreat: Mindful Plant Selections and Simple Designs

A serene retreat in your conservatory garden is the perfect space to relax and escape the stresses of daily life. Mindful plant selections, such as the calming lavender and rosemary, along with simple designs, can evoke a peaceful atmosphere.

Consider incorporating elements like a small water feature, comfortable seating, and soft lighting to create a tranquil retreat where you can unwind, read, or meditate. Carefully selecting plants and design elements that foster a peaceful environment will lead to the creation of a soothing retreat in your conservatory garden.

Edible Garden: Growing Fruit Trees and Culinary Herbs

An edible garden in your conservatory allows you to grow fresh fruit trees and culinary herbs, such as citrus trees, apple trees, peach trees, basil, oregano, rosemary, thyme, and sage. Not only do these plants provide fresh produce and herbs, but they also contribute to the beauty and aroma of your garden room.

Growing your own edible plants can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience, and with proper care and maintenance, your conservatory garden can become a productive and sustainable source of fresh, delicious ingredients.

Accessories and Furniture for Your Garden Room

Enhancing your garden room with comfortable seating, decorative accents, and functional additions can transform the space into an inviting and enjoyable living area. Rattan chairs, benches, and other seating options provide comfort and style, while unique pots, plant stands, and hanging baskets add visual interest and showcase your plants.

Functional additions like water features and shelving units not only serve practical purposes but also contribute to the overall aesthetic of your garden room. Choosing accessories and furniture that complement your conservatory garden will help in creating an attractive and inviting space to relax and relish your plants.

Seating Options: Rattan Chairs and Benches

Comfortable seating is essential for creating an inviting and relaxing garden room. Rattan chairs and benches are popular choices for conservatory gardens because they are lightweight, durable, and easily movable. Available in various styles and colours, rattan seating can be customised to suit your garden room’s design and complement your plants.

Incorporating comfortable seating options will lead to the creation of a cozy and welcoming extra living space to enjoy your garden room as an indoor space with family and friends.

Decorative Accents: Unique Pots and Plant Stands

Decorative accents, such as unique pots and plant stands, can add visual interest and personality to your conservatory garden. These accents can showcase your plants and create focal points within the space, drawing attention to specific areas or unique botanical specimens.

Experiment with different pot styles, materials, and arrangements to create an eye-catching display that highlights your favorite plants and complements the overall design of your garden room.

Functional Additions: Water Features and Shelving Units

Functional additions like water features and shelving units can enhance the usability and appeal of your conservatory garden. Water features provide a tranquil and soothing element, while shelving units offer additional space for displaying plants or storing gardening tools and accessories.

Incorporating functional additions that fulfill both practical and aesthetic purposes will result in a well-designed and efficient garden room that caters to your requirements and preferences.


Creating the perfect conservatory garden is a rewarding and enjoyable journey. By understanding your conservatory’s environment, selecting the ideal plants, designing your garden room, and caring for your plants, you’ll create a stunning and vibrant oasis that flourishes year-round. Whether you dream of a tropical wonderland, a Mediterranean retreat, or a multi-functional space for relaxation and rejuvenation, the possibilities are endless. With careful planning and thoughtful design choices, your conservatory garden will become a beautiful and tranquil sanctuary to enjoy for years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I grow plants in a conservatory?

Yes, conservatories are a great environment for plants to thrive in and many different types can be grown, depending on the size and position of the conservatory.

What plants for an unheated conservatory?

Succulents and Cacti are perfect for unheated conservatories – they can handle temperature drops and don’t need much upkeep.

What can you grow in a conservatory UK?

Grow a variety of plants in your conservatory, such as Mandevilla, Bougainvillea, Plumbago, Sarracenia, Strelitzia, Hymenocallis, Aristolochia and cacti and succulents.

Can I use my conservatory as a greenhouse?

You can indeed use your conservatory as a greenhouse and start growing organic fruit, salad, and vegetables indoors. It’s a great way to save money while enjoying fresh food you’ve grown at home. Growing your own food is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint and help the environment. You can also save money on grocery bills and have access to fresh, organic produce all year round. Plus,

What factors should I consider when evaluating the conservatory atmosphere for plants?

When evaluating the conservatory atmosphere for plants, it is important to consider light, temperature, and humidity levels, with bright light being essential.