Try a new take on the “thriller, filler, spiller” recipe

1. ‘Petra’ croton (Codiaeum variegatum var. pictum ‘Petra’, USDA Hardiness Zone 11)

2. Maidenhair fern (Adiantum capillus-veneris, Zones 8–11)

3. ‘Freckles’ coleus (Solenostemon scutellarioides ‘Freckles’, Zone 11


This container belongs to a friend of mine, who asked for my assistance in planting it. I love the look of the molten-hot-lava pot and let the pot’s glazing act as the spiller portion of the recipe. In the houseplant department of a local nursery, the remaining inspiration hit. The first plant, a croton, screamed to be the thriller because of its size and electric stripes. I chose plant number two, a chartreuse maidenhair fern, to continue the electric-color theme and to provide softness and fill in the contours of the container. The last plant is one of my all-time favorites, ‘Freckles’ coleus, chosen for its bronze and orange splotches to add punch to the entire ensemble.

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