Low Light Houseplants

Updated: Jan 21

Our tropical greenhouse is overflowing with beautiful foliage and includes a great selection of the best low-maintenance houseplants. There are many options for bright, sunny rooms, as well as rooms with low light conditions. Many houseplants are naturally adapted to low light and are ultra-efficient at capturing light. The trick is simply knowing which plants these are! Below is list of low light plants to help you spruce up the less sunny spots in your house or bring some life to your office space!


Sansevieria

Also known as Mother in Law’s Tongue or Snake Plant, these plants will grow anywhere. This plant loves to be ignored, so if you tend to forget about your plants or travel often, this is the perfect plant for you! While their growth is very slow, they can handle little to no sunlight while maintaining their life and beauty. These plants don't like a lot of water, so let them dry out thoroughly before watering them again. They also like their roots to be squished, so don't plant your snake plant in too big of a pot. If you are sizing up or repotting them, make sure the new container is no more than 1-2 inches wider/deeper than the current container. For more information on how to care for Snake Plants, read this blog!


Tillandsia

Also known as Air Plants, these strange little guys are good for any situation. Place them in hanging fixtures, organize them in glass bowls or vases, or position them in Air Plant stands. The options are endless! They do not require soil, and only need an occasional misting. If you live in a dry area, soaking them in a bowl of water for 2 minutes every now and then will help them greatly. They do not like direct sun, but their ideal lighting situation would be near a window that provides bright, indirect light. They can tolerate low light conditions as well.




Dracaena

These lovely plants come in many shapes, sizes and varieties. Over-watering is one of the most common causes of death for Dracaenas. Let them dry out almost completely, then water deeply, saturating the soil until water begins to drain from the bottom of the container. It could take up to 3 weeks to dry out in the winter. Just remember with these plants, less is more when it comes to watering! If they develop root rot from overwatering, they are very difficult to save. For more information on Dracaena care, check out this blog!



Pothos

These lovely plants provide a lush greenery that is perfect to bring life to any corner, shelf or stairwell. They make excellent trailing plant for hanging baskets, and are relatively low maintenance. They can survive low light conditions, though their growth will slow as well. They really only need water every couple of weeks, largely depending on how much light they get. Let the soil dry out almost completely before giving them a good, thorough soak. You will also know your plant needs water if the leaves start to droop.




Ferns

Also beautiful and lush, with unique leaf patterns, ferns prefer moist conditions. Keep their soil moist, but avoid overwatering. If their soil stays super soggy, they will likely rot and die. Since these plants usually thrive in humid environments, misting them daily or placing a humidifier nearby will help keep them from drying out.



Ivy

Similar to Pothos, these beautiful trailing plants come in several different varieties from lush green to unique variegation. Water them when the soil has had a chance to mostly dry out. They will tolerate low light just fine, though they will not produce new growth as quickly as if they were in a bright and sunny area. If the leaves of your Ivy begin to turn red, this means it is becoming magnesium deficient. If this happens, simply add a tablespoon of Epsom salt, and viola!


Cyanotis somaliensis

Also known as kitten ears, these plants are easy to care for and grow well in hanging baskets. Optimal light conditions are bright indirect light, though they will grow fine with moderate to low light conditions. You will know that your plant needs more light if the stems start to get long and leggy, with few leaves. Water occasionally when the top inch or two of soil has had a chance to dry out. Overwatering this plant can easily result in root rot, so it is important to not let the soil stay soggy or wet for too long. Trimming this plant back at any point will help encourage new growth from the center, resulting in a more full and bushy plant.


Beaucarnea recurvate

Also known as a Ponytail Palm, these plants also like to be ignored and can go for weeks without being watered. They tolerate low light conditions well and do not respond well to overwatering, so just leave it alone and let it do its thing! Make sure the soil has a good chance to try out almost completely before watering again. If the tips of the leaves start turning brown and crispy, this is a sign that it could use just a little bit more water (just don't over do it!). You will know if you are overwatering your palm if the blades start to turn yellow and drop. If this starts to occur, check that the plant is in a container with a proper drainage hole, make sure it is planted in well draining potting soil, and decrease the amount/frequency of waterings.


Chlorophytum comosum

Also known as Spider Plant, these lovely, bright colored plants can grow just about anywhere. Their growth will increase if placed in a warm, sunny area, though they will tolerate minimal light just fine. These plants also do not need to be watered often, so just leave it be and it will be fine. If the leaf tips of your Spider Plant start to turn brown, it means you are overwatering the plant. They are also extremely easy to propagate, so have some fun! The pups will root easily in water, at which point they can be transferred to soil.


Philodendron

There are many different varieties of Philodendron, and to most people, they resemble Pothos very closely. You can know the difference by the matte, heart shaped leaves of the Philodendron (Pothos leaves are glossy and have a less distinct heart shape to the leaves). Trailing varieties are excellent for hanging baskets, while other upright varieties make for lovely floor/shelf/table decorations. These plants do prefer moderate indirect light. They will start to get leggy if they do not receive enough sun. Keep them out of direct contact with the sun, as this will cause leaves to die off. Let the top couple inches of soil dry out before watering again, and if leaves start to droop, this is a sign your plant might need some more water. Never allow the soil to get soggy or stay wet for too long, as this could result in root rot!


Monstera deliciosa

Also known as the Swiss Cheese Plant, they are set apart by their large and uniquely shaped leaves. Their leaves add a very tropical feel to any room. These plants are relatively easy to care for, so long as they are not overwatered. They will grow best with bright indirect light, but they can handle low light conditions as well. As was said for several other plants, the growth rate of your Monstera will simply decrease with less sun. Water only when the top bit of soil has dried out, and make sure it is in a pot with an appropriate drainage hole to avoid the roots rotting in soggy soil.



More Lowlight Plants...

Some others also include Peace Lily's, Chinese Evergreens, Bromeliads, Aglaonema, ZZ Plants, Umbrella Plants, Parlor Palms, and more!


What's The Benefit?

Not only do houseplants make your home more beautiful and inviting, but they also absorb indoor air pollution and help keep the air in your home fresh, clean and filtered, resulting in a happier, heathier you! Polluted indoor air is a major cause of headaches, nausea, itchy eyes and other discomforts. Houseplants are also proven to reduce stress, lighten moods, decrease anxiety, and more. For an exhaustive list of all the ways houseplants benefit us, check out this blog!


Sources of Indoor Air Pollution Include:

  • Mold and pollen

  • Tobacco smoke

  • Household cleaning products

  • Gases such as radon and carbon monoxide

  • Building materials that off-gas chemicals

Toxins that Houseplants Absorb:

  • Benzene – a common solvent found in oils and paints

  • Trichloroethylene – used in paints, adhesives, inks and varnishes.

  • Formaldahyde – used in building materials like particle board and foam insulation. and many, many more!

The 10 Best Houseplants For Detoxifying Air:

  • Aloe Vera

  • English Ivy (Hedera helix)

  • Rubber Tree (Ficus elastica)

  • Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)

  • Snake Plant (Sansevieria)

  • Bamboo Palm (Chamaedorea seifrizii)

  • Philodendron

  • Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)

  • Dragon Tree (Dracaena Marginata)

  • Golden Pothos

Questions??

As always, we are happy to help with any questions, concerns or comments. Send us a message, give us a call, or come into the store! We are here to help you grow better, naturally.

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