Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Taking the decorations down? Think big… think really big plants to banish the post-Christmas blues

© Shutterstock / mokjcBigger plants like the alocasia amazonica sanderiana, with its arrow-shaped leaves, will fill empty rooms
Bigger plants like the alocasia amazonica sanderiana, with its arrow-shaped leaves, will fill empty rooms

Once the Christmas tree comes down most homes can feel a little bare.

If that’s the case then maybe it’s time to fill the gap left by your Nordic fir with a jumbo-sized house plant. Big plants create a big impact and they also help to create a micro-climate in which your other plants will flourish.

In fact, grouping plants close together often mimics how they would grow in the wild, where the shady leaves would help to keep the soil moist.

One of the most dramatic plants, if you have the space for it, is Alocasia. There are many different varieties available, all with striking leaves that are shaped like arrowheads, and some of these grow very large indeed. Unlike the giant Swiss Cheese Plant, they won’t send out aerial roots and try to burrow their way into the carpet, but you do need to grow Alocasia in a large, heavy pot to prevent it from toppling over once fully grown.

The ponytail palm is a very different plant. Unlike the Alocasia, which is native to the rainforests of Borneo and has a very lush appearance, Beaucarnea, as it is formally known, hails from semi-desert areas in Mexico so it survives on much less water. It is, however, just as striking and it gets its name from the fact its narrow leaves, which appear at the top of the trunk, curve upwards before hanging down.

It is a striking plant that looks good in minimalist interiors and if you want to make a real impact then find a multi-stemmed specimen.

A mature ponytail palm can reach two metres in height, but if you don’t want to pay for such a large specimen then buy a smaller one and re-pot it every year to encourage it to grow.

Alocasias and ponytail palms can thrive in the same space, so long as you get the watering right. While the first should be kept permanently moist, the second needs to remain on the dry side and will benefit from an occasional dose of cactus feed in summer.

And, who knows? Next year you might decide to dispense with the Christmas tree and, instead, decorate your giant houseplants with baubles and tinsel.