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Plant Know-How: Cork Mounted Plants

 Group of plants, mounted to natural cork bark pieces, grouped together on a white peg board wall.If you've been to our shop (or a variety of great plant shops around the country), you've likely seen our wall of mounted plants. If you've wondered about how it works and how you care for these works of living art, you've come to the right place! 

Mounted Plants are created by attaching a plant to a piece of natural cork bark, or a wood plank, using sphagnum moss and some kind of binding like fishing line or twine. This method works best on plants called epiphytes- plants that in the wild grow by attaching themselves to the sides or crooks of trees or other plants, but aren't parasites. Epiphytes survive without soil because they can extract nutrients from debris (dead leaves, flowers, fruit, animal droppings, etc) that falls on and around them, as well as from the air and rainwater. Because an indoor Mounted Plant won't have the same access to these natural elements, you'll want to fertilize it occasionally by adding a liquid plant food, like our Good Dirt Plant Food, to the water you use to soak the plant, or making a Frass fertilizer 'tea' and adding that to the water. The frequency you fertilize with will depend on the exact type of fertilizer you use, but the Good Dirt Plant Food or the Frass fertilizer can be used once to twice a month safely. By setting them up in a way that mimics their native environments, Mounted Plants can both thrive and add a fresh way of styling plants in your home- as art! 

There are many plants that can be kept this way, but a few of our favorites are:

  • Hoya
  • Dischidia
  • Epiphyllum
  • Rhipsalis
  • Peperomia
  • Asplenium (Birdsnest Fern)
  • Platycerium (Staghorn Fern)
  • Schlumbergera (Christmas Cactus)

Though some of the care for these plants will depend on the type of plant you choose, we do have care tips specific to all Mounted Plants so read on to learn how to keep yours healthy!

6 mounted plants arranged together on a white tiled bathroom wall, a window to the side and a larger plant with round leaves (Hoya obovata) hanging down in the corner.


Light requirements for Cork Mounted Plants: The type of plant used in the mount will determine the light level. Look up the care info for the plant you have in our Plant Care Atlas

Watering tips for Mounted Plants: Mounted Plants will often dry out faster than a potted version of the same plant, so be sure to check them every few days by feeling the moss around the root ball. When the moss feels dry to the touch, it's time to water. Water your Mounted Plant by fully submerging it into a bin, bucket, sink, etc that has enough water in it to cover the moss covered portion of the mount. Soak for 20-30 minutes until the moss feels very damp. Remove from water and let drip dry a bit (we like to put ours in the dish drainer, or hang in the shower) before hanging it back up. If you find your moss is drying out super fast (like it may in very warm months), you can use a mister or spray bottle in between soaks to keep the moss moist a little longer. 

Are Mounted Plants pet-safe? The mount materials aren't usually toxic to pets (unless you use low quality or chemically preserved moss, which we don't recommend), but be sure to choose a pet-safe plant option when you select your mounted plant if its a concern for you. If you want to check which plants are pet-safe, check out the Pet Safe category of the Plant Care Compendium 

How to style Mounted Plants: We love Mounted Plants grouped together and think they're especially fun in a bathroom- like the one in the photo above from our friend Ariana's home (as seen in Danae's book Houseplants For All). Larger mounted plants also make a big impact when displayed alone- think of them as living art and place them anywhere you'd place art (as long as there's enough light). 

Did you know? Properly made Mounted Plants should be mounted to either natural cork bark, or redwood or cedar wood planks. These materials are naturally water resistant, as well as mold & rot resistant, so they won't fall apart or mold overtime- an important factor if you want to keep your Mounted Plant for a long time. Most epiphytes can stay in the same mount for quite awhile, but if your plant outgrows its mount, it can be moved to a larger piece of cork bark or wood, or if you start with a slightly larger piece to begin with, you can always add more moss over time. 

Excited to add a Mounted Plant to your home? We almost always have them in stock at our Eagle Rock shop, but we don't currently ship them. We also offer workshops if you want to learn how to create your own Mounted Plants! Check the Workshops page to see when the next one is happening.