Sunday, July 11, 1999
PLANTS have different growth potentials. The potential growth and stature makes a plant typical for a location. Have you ever thought that those with miniature looks and growth could be used to create a miniature landscape? And that such plants could be even shifted like a pot?
In such works of art, imagination plays a definite role. You just have to close your eyes, think of a hill and construct it with a little imagination in the least possible space. The material you may need also depends upon your imagination. The material usually used for this purpose includes a half inch white marble, white cement, burnt cinders, stones, pebbles, rocks, sand and miniature plants giving the look of mature trees or bushes. Some even use tiny figures of people, animals, houses, bridges, waterfalls etc. The aim is to create a realistic landscape seen through the wrong end of a telescope.
The effect of a miniature landscape is created by arranging plants in a limited space rather than growing them individually in different pots. There is a wide range of plants that can be grouped together in various combinations and arrangements to make the effect appealing. There is, however, some limitation like those plants that need dissimilar soil or moisture levels like pines and cactuses. These should not be grouped together. However, even these can be accommodated together provided these are planted at different levels in the same landscape. The best effect can be created by the use of water as a fall or a stream or by use of sand suggestive of water. Even some of the sedums could be hanged down the rocks suggesting falls. Haworthia, Bryophyllum, grasses, miniature bamboos, pilea, ferns, various cactuses, sedums, junipers and some herbs are some of the plants that in various combinations form excellent groups for a miniature landscape.
To begin with, a platform is to be made by using plates, logs or even half inch marble mixed in white cement. The depth does not matter much.
On this platform you can even make small water bodies and around this a miniature landscape can be developed. Even different terraces can be made or hillocks could be reproduced. Such an effect could be created with the help of rocks or cinders. Even coral reefs could be used for best effect. In the rocks crevices, certain shallow-rooted cactuses could be adjusted. Even small two or three inches pots could be kept and then camouflaged with soil, rocks, moss or trailing plants.In case such arrangements are meant for participating in a show, then these should be prepared a few months before the actual show to avoid unpleasant surprises at the time of judgement when one of the other plant buckles under stress and shock.
The selection of plants
is very important and should be as per the size of the
platform. A tall growing plant on a short platform will
give it a disproportionate look. Short-statured
crassulas, when in flowering (red), make an excellent
combination with white corals at the background. Small
gorges with pebbles and bamboo bridges make excellent
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