A Very Green Studio Installation

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Over the weekend, we installed a very green (and sort of purple) wall of plants to the studio!

Scott has been convincing me for years that a “living wall” would be a fun addition to our home, and while I’ve always loved the look, we were short on space in our small condo. This house though? We have no shortage of walls, and there is no shortage of natural daylight in the second floor studio! After tucking a snake plant into the studio work room and watching it thrive, we’ve been feeling a little more confident in our plant skills (these guys not included!), and so we finally – much to Scott’s excitement! – picked up a Woolly Pocket Wally Five.

We’d always been curious about Woolly Pockets, but I did have a lot of questions: Won’t it get the wall wet? You water it how? Wait, it’s made out of what? So, here’s the deal. They’re made from 100% recycled bottles, can be used indoors and out, and they have a military grade moisture barrier. The pockets feel like a heavy duty felt, and when watered properly, the felt will distribute water evenly and allow excess to evaporate. (Seriously, I watched this video about 5 times just to make sure I understood what we were doing!)

In other words, they’re plant magic!

We chose the largest pocket, and at 112″ wide, it’s almost as wide as our 10′ ceilings are tall! When it arrived, I honestly worried that it might have been too big for the space, but as soon as Scott and I held it up – just to see – we knew it was right. On Saturday morning, we spent a good hour at our local nursery, and after talking through our plans and showing a handful of inspiration photos with the owner, he helped us choose plants that would be hearty – and most importantly, hard to kill! When we got home, we got right to work:

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We chose to hang it halfway up the wall, and we centered it on the wall behind my desk, even though it’s technically not centered behind my desk. (That bare wall is over 16′ wide, so it flows into the seating area as well.) Each pocket took 2 wall anchors each, and we filled the whole thing halfway up with soil.

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Now, we were ready to start playing with plant placement! We started by lining our plants along the floor, but when that got too confusing, we stuck the little plastic pots right in the pockets and fussed. Even still, it was feeling all too overwhelming (there were a lot of plants!), so we said, ah, forget it! and just started pulling plants to drop right into the soil.

At the very least, we broke up a few large pots of snake plants to go in the middle, and we rotated and hesitated and second guessed every choice after that, but you know what? We had a lot of fun doing it!

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Once we were happy with how everything looked, we topped off the soil and watered the back wall of our Wally Five – also called “the tongue.” The tongue then pulls the water down and around and, well, it’s plant science!

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To say that we love our living wall would be an understatement; we are obsessed. (I feel I say that a lot, but we really, really love it!) While it’s a bit of an investment (in total, we spent about $175 on a wagon full of plants – more than enough for this 9’+ installation!), it’s definitely the statement piece of the room! Even in photos, it’s hard to capture it’s very, very large size.

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We think the best part will be watching it grow; this is only the beginning! Each pocket has the equivalent of about 3+ potted mature plants (the amount suggested by Woolly Pocket), and we chose a variety of plants that would allow for height, ground cover and overflow – and plants that were sure to work in our light conditions. We’re no experts in that area, but after going over each of our choices with the nursery owner, we feel like we have a solid selection that’ll only get stronger as their roots continue to burrow within their pockets.

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I took these photos on Saturday evening, and already, the plants are lifting and moving! The Wandering Jews (the purple vine-like plants) are crawling to life, and the asparagus fern are sticking straight up. Love, love, love.

Psst… This is not a sponsored post for Woolly Pockets, but we did receive a design discount on their product. We just genuinely love the Wally Five, and we wanted to share our enthusiasm with you!

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  • Jessica@CapeofDreams - August 26, 2014 - 7:38 AM

    It looks magnificent! The Wooly Pockets have been tempting me for years. I have an upcoming project with plants. Just can’t get enough of them!ReplyCancel

  • Emily @ Adventures of a Dog Mom - August 26, 2014 - 8:23 AM

    Awesome project… if I wasn’t a plant killer I would try that!ReplyCancel

  • Elly - August 26, 2014 - 8:39 AM

    Wow – that’s amazing! Love the work in progress gif too :)ReplyCancel

  • Lindsey d. - August 26, 2014 - 8:46 AM

    The Wally Pocket is awesome, but I must admit that I watched the slideshow five times just for the pups… I love Jack and CC!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2014 - 9:19 AM

      No matter what we’re working on, they are ALWAYS under foot. Always!ReplyCancel

    • Nina - August 26, 2014 - 11:22 PM

      I watched the gif for the pooches 3 times and then to see the plant placement another 3 times. haha.
      The results are gorgeous! Well done.ReplyCancel

  • Emily - August 26, 2014 - 9:08 AM

    That looks awesome! I’m now trying to figure out where in my house I have enough room to do that…ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2014 - 9:19 AM

      They also have 3 pockets or single pockets!ReplyCancel

  • Heather - August 26, 2014 - 9:20 AM

    Wow. That’s really cool! BTW- I spy a certain adorable elephant watering can. I had to laugh because I bought the very same one with the Ace gift card I won through Yellow Brick Home. I love him!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2014 - 9:34 AM

      Ha! We got ours at Ace as well! We get so many compliments on that watering can… who knew?!ReplyCancel

  • Jeannie - August 26, 2014 - 10:01 AM

    Love this!! What a great job! The gif of your pups everywhere is awesome.ReplyCancel

  • Emily - August 26, 2014 - 10:03 AM

    This is incredible. I may have to do this myself. Thank you for sharing!ReplyCancel

  • caroline [the diy nurse] - August 26, 2014 - 10:09 AM

    I’m so in love. Also, best gif in the entire world. I thought I loved it when I just saw the plant part, and then I scrolled down to see the dogs and almost died- so precious!ReplyCancel

  • Ashly - August 26, 2014 - 10:48 AM

    Love it! I’ve seen the smaller pockets used indoors, but never as a large feature like this. Your plant palette is gorgeous, too!ReplyCancel

  • Kati - August 26, 2014 - 11:22 AM

    What about stability? Could snake plant tip over or to the side when it grows? Nevertheless, it looks wonderful.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2014 - 11:37 AM

      Good question! The snake plants are more bottom heavy than top heavy (the roots are SERIOUS!), and the pockets have a lot of weight to them now that there’s soil filling them up. One of our favorite Wally inspirations came from Sprout Home, where they have a lot of snake plants adding height to theirs!ReplyCancel

  • Riley - August 26, 2014 - 11:37 AM

    It would be so much appreciated if bloggers would indicate at the BEGINNING of the post as to whether they are using donated/discounted/sponsored products.

    Waiting till the end of the post to reveal that information makes it feel like you’re trying to sneak one over on your readers.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2014 - 11:39 AM

      Noted, thanks, Riley! We’ve wanted a Woolly for a while, so although we got a discount, we weren’t obligated to write about it at all (this isn’t a sponsored post, but we did want to be transparent on the discount). That’s the last thing we’d want you to feel, so thank you for the input!ReplyCancel

  • carrie @ brick city love - August 26, 2014 - 11:45 AM

    That’s AWESOME. Totally dig it.ReplyCancel

  • Lyndsey - August 26, 2014 - 2:09 PM

    I have such a love affair with living walls, this might just inspire me to finally make one of my own! Oh, and the pups- had to laugh at them always underfoot as we lovingly call our pup our “stalker” as she’s never far away, or often in the midst of anything we’re doing! One quick Q: did you attach the Wolly Pockets to wall beams when you hung them?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 26, 2014 - 2:11 PM

      Stalkers… love it!

      None of our anchors are into studs, but we did use metal 50 lb anchors. Woolly Pocket supplies smaller plastic anchors, but for the sake of over doing it, we went with metal anchors that we had already, and we used their screws that matched the hardware of the pocket.ReplyCancel

  • Lesley - August 26, 2014 - 6:43 PM

    Looks fabulous! But a word of warning, whatever you do, do not plant any of that wandering dew in your garden. It will take over and is almost impossible to destroy…also I believe it’s not too good for dogs either.

    I had some wandering dew in my backyard once and it was a nightmare. My pooch ended up with an awful rash

    xxReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 27, 2014 - 9:03 AM

      Thanks for the warning! We have some in a pot outside our front door, and it has grown SO fast! We love the look, so that’s okay by us! Now let’s hope they don’t take over the entire Woolly Pocket…ReplyCancel

  • Kara - August 26, 2014 - 7:18 PM

    Love it – what a great idea! My townhouse has a similar situation to your condo… not enough walls and not enough natural light, but idea has been bookmarked in my brain for a future house that will hopefully have lots of south facing walls!ReplyCancel

  • Jane @ The Borrowed Abode - August 26, 2014 - 7:39 PM

    This is really fun! Can’t wait to see how it grows. My friends did some sort of plastic wall planters in their place and that also looked amazing. Plants + walls = winning combo.ReplyCancel

  • Megan - August 26, 2014 - 9:07 PM

    The purple plant (Wandering Jew) is fast growing! You can take any piece, including those that fall off, throw it in some soil and it’ll grow. I did that and my pots are growing like crazy.ReplyCancel

  • Ashley - August 27, 2014 - 2:06 PM

    I love your living wall! The dogs are adorable as well! Is it an option to frame out the wolly pocket? Or add trim so you don’t see the black? Or do the plants eventually cover it? For my home I would love to do this, but it looks a little unfinished for my taste.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 27, 2014 - 2:40 PM

      The idea is that some of the plants will eventually cover it, but it really depends on what you plant! You can check out their inspiration gallery to get an idea of all the different ways you can style the Wally: http://www.woollypocket.com/gallery/view/wally/ReplyCancel

  • Joyce H. - August 27, 2014 - 6:27 PM

    I’m not a huge fan of living walls but I think you guys might have converted me! This looks neat, clean, and fuss-free. Also, I laughed at the gif of the dogs sleeping/whirling around while you guys filled up the Wally.ReplyCancel

  • Marie - August 28, 2014 - 10:47 AM

    What an awesome choice ! It really makes a statement in your studio, do you often look back to see the plants while working ?
    I have three upside down hanging pots from Boskke which I love.ReplyCancel

  • Kalli - August 28, 2014 - 4:13 PM

    Looks beautiful! You’re really making the most out of that big, open space. I love the idea of plant pockets because it makes you sort of have to view the plants as living artwork.

    (p.s. and thanks for my little bday package : ) xoxoReplyCancel

  • kelsey williams - August 29, 2014 - 2:32 PM

    I have a Woolly Pocket above my bed and LOVE it! I highly recommend their products. Here is a photo: http://www.snappycasualblog.com/blog/decorating-the-pallet-wallReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 29, 2014 - 4:33 PM

      LOVE your pallet wall! Are the plants hanging down really low by now? I assume you’ll have to trim it?ReplyCancel

  • This Week’s Links | 702 Park Project - August 31, 2014 - 12:02 PM

    […] This is a pretty cool spin on an indoor garden. […]ReplyCancel

  • Jessica - February 27, 2016 - 3:08 AM

    Can you give us an update on this post. Would love to know how it’s going 18 months later!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - February 29, 2016 - 11:52 AM

      Hi Jessica! We have gotten a lot of questions about our Woolly Pocket lately, it may be time for an update! In the meantime, you can see the most recent iteration of the pocket in this post: https://www.yellowbrickhome.com/2015/07/28/updates-around-the-studio/

      You can see that we ended up swapping out to sturdier (read: black-thumb approved) plants, but even now, some of our snake plants are getting much too large for the pocket. I’m thinking another little switch up might be in order, but as I don’t mind change every now and then, it’s not a bad thing. :)ReplyCancel

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