Use these editor-approved vessel shapes and botanical combos as inspiration for your next nursery run.

Houseplant Pots
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Love the minimalist architectural plant trend but only have a small space for styling indoor greenery? There’s no need to lug in a 6-foot specimen tree to add bodacious botanicals into your home, because even the smallest planters can make a big impact when intentionally pairing striking foliage with a unique vessel. Think the graceful curves of a sphere planter paired with round rosy fronds, or curating a juxtaposition of a bonsai-esque statement plant with delicate saucers—the combinations are endless! 

Whether you’re into modern minimalism or boho-chic, prefer funky leaf textures or easy-to-find nursery stock—these six common pot shapes below will add architectural flair to any tabletop, bookshelf, or countertop. Let’s explore how size, shape, and leaf texture can craft unique botanical masterpieces when paired with the perfectly shaped pot. You can even use these foolproof pairings as a guide and lean into other leaf shapes, colors, and textures as inspiration to create your ultimate combo. It’s all about experimenting and having fun because there’s no such thing as a poor pairing.

For Round Pots: Rosy Calathea

The Bouqs Rosie Calathea

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The Bouqs Rosie Calathea, $64

Whether you go smooth-surfaced or lean more towards a rough lava glaze, rounded vessels are flattering of any plant placed inside. We particularly like these playful pots paired with a rosy variegated calathea whose round leaves accentuate the container it’s sitting in. Pro tip: Keep plants in original nursery pots and stack on top of a block of wood to give it a lift while customizing height off the pottery rim.

Round Pots to Buy:

For Cylinder Pots: Jewel Orchid

Verdant Lyfe Jewel Orchid

Courtesy of Verdant Lyfe

Verdant Lyfe Jewel Orchid, $34
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While one might think a tall and skinny plant would accentuate the height of cylindrical ceramics, we like to play with architectural structure and unusual lines to break up linear vessels. Unlike other traditional orchids, the Jewel Orchid (Ludisia discolor ‘Red Velvet’), is an easy-to-care-for, low-light-loving plant with stunning terracotta-esque vining on the velvety leaves. Over time it will twist and turn, cascading down the length of the planter, shooting out small delicate white blooms once a year during late fall or winter.

Cylinder Pots to Buy:

For Shallow Saucers: Ficus ‘Ginseng’

Rooted Ficus Ginseng

Courtesy of Rooted

Rooted Ficus Ginseng, $25

A trunk-heavy architecturally sprouting specimen plant such as Ficus ‘Ginseng’ or the harder-to-come-by ‘Pelargonium cotyledonis’ would be spot-on for the minimalist plant trend when paired with a shallow saucer shape. Playing with scale is key here; accentuating a larger plant with shallow roots that can handle limited soil depth creates a bonsai-forward look that is both modern and playful. Oftentimes the large-scale version of this look is accomplished by placing nursery pots inside of ceramic planters and filling the empty areas with paper, rocks, and moss. If planting directly, drainage is key, so make sure to use a potting soil that allows for more airflow and check dampness before watering.

Shallow Saucers to Buy:

For Abstract Pots: Philodendron White Wizard

The Sill Philodendron White Wizard

Courtesy of The Sill

The Sill Philodendron White Wizard, $88

No matter the shape of planter you choose, using a plant with a very distinctive leaf variegation will create a playful pairing offering unexpected color patterns alongside your unexpected vessel shape. Not to be taken too seriously, this is a moment to have fun. The Philodendron White Wizard loves to climb—make sure to choose a vessel that can fit a small plant trellis or add a coco coir pole inside with the plant to offer support as it grows and produces larger leaves.

Abstract Pots to Buy:

For Hanging Pots: Aeschynanthus Radicans ‘Rasta’

Folia Collective Aeschaynthus Radicans Rasta

Courtesy of Folia Collective

Aeschynanthus Radicans Rasta, $24

No space? No problem! Hanging pots are becoming a trend of their own and we want to break a few rules by not defaulting to a fern or string of pearls, but pairing one with the unexpected and densely curled leaves of a Aeschynanthus radicans ‘Rasta’. Over time leaves gracefully cascade down with bright red flowers emerging from dark maroon calyxes. Fun fact: These plants are epiphytic, meaning they like to grow on the surface of another plant and derive moisture and nutrients from the air, rain, water, or from debris accumulating around it—so use a soil that is well-draining and chunky allowing for maximum airflow and drainage. 

Hanging Pots to Buy:

For Glass Terrariums: Kokedama

Uncommon Goods Kokedama Trio

Courtesy of Uncommon Goods

Uncommon Goods Mini Houseplant Kokedama Trio, $60

Yes, we’re shouting our love for kokedama once again! While they look stunning alone on a simple tray, they become a unique focal point when placed inside of a glass vessel. Many different plants can be wrapped in moss and it’s quite easy to DIY from any nursery plant. Depending on the size and shape of your planter, opt for plants whose leaf growth won’t become too cramped inside its container. A few of our favorite plants to kokedama: Peperomia caperata ‘Luna Red’, Peperomia albovittata ‘Piccolo Banda’, Aglaonema ‘Lady Valentine’, and Staghorn fern.

Glass Terrariums to Buy:

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