House plants are good for the soul. They bring the outdoors inside, enhance interior design, improve air quality and boost mental health. What’s not to like?
Make the most of all the benefits a beautiful display of houseplants brings by placing them around your home. You don’t have to have a green thumb to keep indoor plants happy and healthy. There’s no such thing as a black thumb as long as you follow the golden rule: choose the right plant for the right space. The trick is researching which plants would thrive in your chosen spot.
Check out some of the best house plants in this blog.
What Do Plants Need to Survive?
Different plants survive in different conditions. For example, some plants thrive in humid environments while others need drier air. However, some elements are essential for all plant species. Before choosing a spot for your plant, ensure it has the following:
All plants need at least some light to survive. Some prefer bright sunshine, while others are happy in a dull corner. However, no plant will grow in a completely dark room. If you want to decorate a window-less room with house plants, make sure you rotate them every few days so they get some natural light.
Alternatively, opt for a dried plant, such as pampas grass, which can be placed in a vase for a natural look that requires zero maintenance. Most plants prefer indirect light to the intense light they might receive on a south-facing windowsill.
Just like humans, living plants need water to survive. When picking a spot for house plants, ensure you can easily access them to check how moist the soil is and water them when needed. Choose pots with drainage holes to allow excess water to escape, helping to prevent root rot.
Most houseplants don’t like the room temperature to fluctuate too much. Keep them away from heat sources and out of draughty areas. For example, keep exotic plants in a warm room where they’ll feel like they’re in their natural environment.
Most of the nutrients a house plant needs can be found in the soil, so use a quality potting mix to help keep your houseplants healthy. You may also wish to use plant food for added nutrition. Feeding a plant once a month during spring in summer is usually plenty. Fertiliser isn’t needed during the autumn and winter months when the plant enters its dormant phase.
Plants grow best in a replica of their natural habitat. Some prefer a warm, dry environment. Others need some humidity in the air to help them grow. Humidity is usually highest in kitchens in bathrooms but can be replicated in other rooms by misting plants or sitting the pots on a tray filled with pebbles and water.
The Best Indoor Plants for Every Room in the House
The living room is where we spend the most time at home, and we want it to look its best, providing a calm and relaxing environment. Indoor plants are excellent for helping to create this vibe. Living rooms can usually accommodate statement plants as well as baby plants, so don’t be afraid to mix things up with different shapes and sizes.
Kentia palms are larger plants with tall, slender stems and rich green foliage. They have an elegant appearance that suits a minimal style.
This low-maintenance houseplant is ideal for beginners as it tolerates some neglect. It is also pet friendly, making it a great choice for living areas. Kenta palms like a bright spot out of direct sunlight in a warm room. Water when the top 2-3cm of soil feels dry, usually around once a week or less often in winter.
Air-purifying plants are ideal for bedrooms. They improve air quality by removing airborne toxins while we sleep and can even help reduce snoring!
This exotic plant loves a warm room and turns carbon dioxide into fresh oxygen overnight. A rosette of deep green leaves gives way to a tall stem in the centre, with a pineapple flower on top. The pineapple isn’t edible but looks striking and gives the plant a magical feel.
Position pineapple plants near a bright window and water whenever the top layer of soil feels dry. Ensure the pot has plenty of drainage holes to prevent the soil from becoming overly wet.
Obviously, the main criteria for any plant in a playroom are that it is non-toxic and child friendly. Houseplants are a great way to encourage children to look after a living thing, and kids often take pride in seeing how much they’ve helped their plants grow.
Sometimes it feels like spider plants are everywhere, with everyone you know seeming to have at least one. And there’s a reason they’re so popular – they are practically impossible to kill.
Boasting long, narrow, variegated leaves, spider plants are renowned not only for their hardiness, but also for being incredibly easy to care for. These unfussy indoor plants tolerate some neglect and can survive in relatively low light conditions. They are also prolific pup producers, meaning you can propagate more plants for free very easily.
Kitchens tend to be warm, humid rooms ideal for many indoor plants. The most obvious choice of plants for the kitchen is herbs. Basil, coriander and mint are all examples of herbs that grow well on the kitchen windowsill. But if you aren’t much of a chef, a decorative rather than culinary plant may be the best way to bring life to the kitchen.
Peace lilies come from the tropical rainforests of Central and South America, so a hot, humid kitchen is the ideal space for them.
These popular indoor plants have glossy green leaves and white flower spathes. They are low-maintenance plants that are easy to care for. They prefer a bright spot, out of direct light and like the soil to be kept moist but well-drained.
Another humid part of the house, bathrooms are often lacking in bright light and need plants that thrive in low light conditions.
A snake plant fits the bathroom bill perfectly. Snake plants tolerate shaded areas well, although they will grow faster with more light. They flourish in high humidity, and because their fleshy leaves retain moisture, they don’t need watered too frequently.
The snake plant is an attractive but unusual houseplant featuring sword-like leaf shapes with sharp points (hence the plant’s other common name, mother-in-law’s tongue). It is easy to grow and almost impossible to kill, making it the perfect choice for beginners.
The conservatory is one room where you can literally go wild with plants. Treat it as an extension of the garden, bursting with plant life.
Devil’s ivy is a trailing plant that looks great spilling from high shelves or hanging planters. It can also be trained to climb a moss pole to create a tall floor-standing plant.
Devil’s ivy loves a bright spot but prefers to be kept out of direct sun, which can scorch its heart-shaped leaves. The plant’s green tones indicate how much light the plant needs. The darker the leaves, the more shade they can tolerate. Water every 1-2 weeks, allowing the soil to dry out in between.
The hallway should be an attractive area that welcomes guests as they enter the home. As it contains the front door, the hallway can be somewhat draughty, especially in winter, so it needs robust plants to show the space at its best.
Also known as dracaena fragrans, corn plants tolerate most light conditions (but keep them out of direct sunlight) and an infrequent watering schedule. Dracaena fragrans are large plants that create an interesting focal point in a corner of the hallway.
Wherever possible, keep these houseplants away from the front door and water only when the soil has dried out. Mist the foliage occasionally to provide a humidity boost and help keep the narrow leaves free from dust.
Dining rooms can often get neglected when it comes to houseplants, but that shouldn’t be the case. A well-positioned plant is a lovely way to add contrast against angular furniture and architectural features and makes an excellent table centrepiece.
With its feathery foliage and bright green tones, the Boston fern is a great plant for the dining room. Place it in the middle of the table for a striking centrepiece, or even hang it from the ceiling above the table.
Like most houseplants, Boston ferns like moist but well-drained soil, so water the plant around once a week in spring and summer. Position it in a bright spot out of direct sunlight and mist occasionally to raise humidity levels.
How to Display House Plants
Once you’ve figured out which plants are most likely to thrive in the different areas of your home, it’s time to decide how to display them.
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Shelves are versatile places to show off houseplants. High shelves can be home to long, trailing plants cascading from the top, while lower shelves are ideal for small houseplants in cute pots. Houseplants help soften the edges of right-angled shelves and complement anything else your shelf might be home to, from books and photos to ornaments and collectables.
Hang Them Up
If you need all your shelf space for your stuff, hanging plants is a great solution. Houseplants can be hung from the ceiling to display trailing plants at eye level, giving the illusion of them being bigger plants. Hanging plants from the walls is a great alternative to expensive artwork and you know you’ll never grow bored of them.
Create an Oasis
Group plants together to create a calming indoor oasis of greenery. Place houseplants of varying heights next to and around each other for year-round interest.
Specifically designed for displaying houseplants, plant stands come in a wide variety of styles and make an attractive addition to any room. They add height to plants by raising them from the floor and often have space for two or more plants.
Try a No-Soil Grow
Most houseplants need soil to provide nutrients and moisture to the roots. However, some thrive without being planted in soil or even water. Air plants live on the air around them, which means they can be used creatively to produce a focal point. Place plants in glass baubles, sea shells or even just directly onto the shelf and enjoy watching these quirky house plants thrive.
Display on Different Levels
Using the same plant pot design in a range of sizes is a great trick for displaying indoor plants. The different-sized pots add structural interest to your interior design and ensure your indoor plants catch the eye.
From ornamental value to health benefits, there are lots of reasons why you should place houseplants around the home. Many plants will grow well in any room, but by taking the time to find the right plant for the right space, you’ll ensure your plants won’t just survive but thrive.