Chris Mark Castle | Jungle Room

Koi fish and various reptiles compliment the exotic plant life in the bustling hydroponic ecosystem of the Chris Mark Castle's Jungle Room. The trophy fish swim in a special type of peace and solitude that only a well maintained indoor garden can nurture. A broad array of vinery carpets the natural stone clad ceiling. The atmosphere created resembles a remote cavern or cave. Sounds of a trickling stream serve to soothe the mind and body of all who meander within. Cascading from one side of the lush chamber to the other, the humidity in the air reveals the presence of the maturing healing herbs, flowers, and fruiting trees. An adjoining swim spa invites one to enter deep meditation as the plant's vibrations cleanse one's being and spirit too.

The smell of flowering jasmine vines and ripening citrus fruits stir a stillness of the mind. As the koi fish dance amongst each other, a closer inspection of the surrounding foliage surfaces some interesting discoveries. Cumquats, pineapples, blood-oranges, limes and lemons grow suspended in a space and time like no other at the Chris Mark Castle. A matrix of hibiscus cultivars freeze one's focus and attention as they beckon the admiration of those passing by. Nutrient rich silt collected from the marshiest part of lake potter is mixed with fertile soil also yielded directly from the surrounding land. Cuisine quality herbs like basil, mint, rosemary, dill, oregano and even kaffir lime grow heartily.

Underfoot, solid slabs of quartz crystal guide each and every footstep around the flourishing leafs, flowering buds and whimsical wildlife. At the Chris Mark Castle, every room's ingenious design is centered around the more conventional elements that make castle life worth living.

Just as the left and right outdoor terrace's floors are heated, the jungle room's crystal tiled features are too. Between the plant's misters and the whirlpool's steaming surface water, bare feet can rest or be guided in stylish comfort. Beyond the warmth greeting visitors feet, a nerve of sustainability arrises in understanding the setup of the room's irrigation system. Although the misters that spray the vinery and plants from overhead use ionized water, a separate system beneath the soil nourishes the plants in a different way. This water can be traced back to the koi ponds. Charged with the nutrients excreted by the fish, the plant's growth is reinforced through this innovative system.

An ever growing variety of perennial plants in the Tillandsia genus can be found lining the oasis' stone walls as well. These 'air plants' add bursts of color to the space. Oriental lanterns hang overhead, casting shaped shadows on the silvery arms of these tropical looking growths.

Although diminutive when compared with leaves of the cave's banana tree, or Indian taro, the tiny plant's spindly arms bring endless joy to those able to get lost in the details. Hanging planters are home here too. These baskets overflow with woody-stemmed flora, dangling aloft the chamber's footpaths and bridge crossing. A fine mist emits from the burble and plash of the stream running down into the fish's enclosure.


The Chris Mark Castle wishes to extend a gracious thank you to the horticulture experts at Logee's Greenhouses in Danielson, Connecticut. Without the grace of their careful guidance and advice, the castle's matrixes of foliage simply wouldn't be possible.


Enjoy a partial list of the castle's botanical delights below:

  • Hibiscus ‘Marianne Charlton’ (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis hybrid)

  • Panama Rose (Rondeletia leucophylla)

  • Angel of the Night (Randia ruiziana)

  • Mint Bush (Prostanthera magnifica)

  • Hibiscus ‘Indigo Sunset’ (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis hybrid)

  • Sansevieria ‘Laurentii Superba’ (Sansevieria hybrid)

  • Kaffir Lime (Citrus hystrix)

  • Senecio ‘Angel Wings’ (Senecio candicans)

  • Citrus ‘Smith Red’ Blood Orange (Citrus sinensis hybrid)

  • Desert Rose ‘Beautiful Dreamer’ (Adenium hybrid)

  • Acanthus ‘Whitewater’ PP (Acanthus hybrid)

  • Variegated Blue Skyflower (Thunbergia grandiflora variegata)

  • Tillandsia ‘Curly Slim’ (Tillandsia intermedia x streptophylla hybrid)

  • Begonia ‘My Special Angel’ (Begonia fibrous hybrid)

  • Hibiscus ‘Frosted Lipstick’ (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis hybrid)

  • Hibiscus ‘Indigo Sunset’ (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis hybrid)

  • Hibiscus ‘Japanese Lantern’ (Hibiscus schizopetalus)

  • Abutilon ‘Little Sunshine’ (Abutilon hybrid)

  • Australian Sarsparilla (Hardenbergia violacea)

  • Poet’s Jasmine (Jasminum grandiflorum)

  • Bougainvillea ‘Double Red’ (Bougainvillea hybrid)

  • Weeping Blue Ginger (Dichorisandra pendula)

  • Tillandsia Ionantha Ball

  • Butterfly Flower (Clerodendrum ugandense)

  • Crown of Thorns ‘Pink Princess’ (Euphorbia milii hybrid)

  • Crown of Thorns ‘Century’ (Euphorbia milii hybrid)

  • Crown of Thorns ‘Full of Money’ (Euphorbia milii hybrid)

  • South African Jasmine (Jasminum angulare)

  • Passion Flower ‘Purple Tiger’ (Passiflora x decaisnenana hybrid)

  • Passion Flower platyloba (Passiflora species)

  • Passion Flower ‘Blue Bouquet’ (Passiflora hybrid)

  • Passion Flower ‘Anastasia' (Passiflora hybrid)

  • Orange Lipstick Plant (Aeschynanthus xsplendidus)

  • The American Wonder Lemon ‘Ponderosa’ (Citrus limon)

  • Sweet Kumquat ‘Meiwa’ (Fortunella crassifolia)

  • Blue Skyflower (Thunbergia grandiflora)

  • Twisted Cord Flower (Strophanthus caudatus)

  • Jade Vine (Strongylodon macrobotrys)

  • Trumpet Vine ‘Sunlady’ (Thunbergia hybrid)

  • Panama Rose (Rondeletia leucophylla)

  • Cape Primrose ‘Full Moon’ (Streptocarpus hybrid)

  • Rattlesnake Plant (Calathea lancifolia)

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