House plants are varied and very broad. Most can be categorized as flowering and non flowering. While we commonly assume house plants are few in numbers, the truth is there are hundreds of varieties of house plants. The reviews will be on the most popular types of house plants.
You must first ask yourself? Do you like plants with flowers or you just like plants with lots of leaves? Go through each plant by looking at the pictures attached to each with the proper description for each plant.
The most popular house plants include:
In this article:
1. Amaryllis Flowers
Amaryllis flowers are hard to categorize. The tropical and exotic look of the flowers is one of the reasons people like growing them. Amaryllis flowers are easy to grow and forcing them to bloom indoors is a snap.
You can buy them boxed, potted and ready to grow by just adding water. It takes Amaryllis flowers about six weeks or longer to bloom. The plant can grow up to two feet. The flowers are big, bright, trumpet shaped blooms that can cheer up any indoor garden scene.
Most Amaryllis flowers will go dormant naturally. They usually re-bloom sometime during the winter months. Since it is very popular during the holiday seasons, you will find abundant supply during the Christmas seasons.
The word Amaryllis is derived from the Greek word for “sparkling” which is appropriate because they can brighten up your lawn or bring that sparkling touch to your indoors garden.
You can also grow Amaryllis flowers outdoors in frost free areas. The best way to grow amaryllis flowers is to plant bulbs with the upper third above the ground in very rich potting soil. The plant and bloom grows big. Put just one bulb into a five inch or larger pot.
Use growing containers slightly bigger than the circumference of the bulb. They do not need a lot of soil and growing space indoors. The growing pot should also have holes in the bottom for good drainage. Indoors or outdoors, your Amaryllis will benefit greatly from much sunlight.
In order to allow your Amaryllis to re-bloom naturally, try to cut off the flower stalk after blooming ceases, but let the foliage continue to grow as long as it can. Also keep it in bright light, indoors or out. Keep the soil just moist, but not wet.
When the flowers start to fade, repeat the process. By allowing the plant to bloom naturally, your will get larger plants and flowers.
An Aloe Vera plant, also called medicinal Aloe, is a succulent plant that did originate from North Africa. Aloe vera is usually grown in very arid climates and widely available in Africa and many other arid areas. Aloe vera plants are widely used for medicinal purposes and can be found in many medicines used in treating:
- Poison ivy
- Itchy skin
- Dry cracking skin
- Moisturizing skin
Aloe vera plants are generally grown as indoor house plants. Although, they are easy to grow, but growing very tall is a challenge. They look splendid in containers by themselves and do compliment other house plants. The thick heavy leaves are filled with sap and some can be found in teas and beverages. Beware some species of the plant is considered poisonous and must not be consumed internally. Selections of the edible ones are best left to experts in the field of medicinal plants.
Aloe vera Plants is best grown as indoor house plant. The plant requires little watering and maintenance, but will die if exposed to extreme cold temperature. To plant one, select a pot or container that fits your room decor with holes in the bottom for good drainage.
Aloe vera plants prefer full sun, but will tolerate a light shade. Water thoroughly but don’t let the soil get too wet. It’s best to use fertilizer spikes or fertilizer for best growth. The plant can become very top heavy and one must watch out for plant falling which is the most common complaint.
The Aloe vera plant is very is relatively resistant to most insect pests, though mealy bugs, scale insects and aphid species may cause a decline in plant health by stunning the growth.
3. African Violets
African violets are just so easy to grow, and probably the most popular among indoor house plants. African violets sometimes shy blooms often last for several weeks. The plants prefer lots of sunshine, but do avoid hot rays during the summer months. Artificial lighting can be used if little sunshine is available.
For planting, do use a pot with openings in the bottom to allow for good drainage. You can easily find soil mix and fertilizer specifically for African violets. Use fertilizers high in phosphorous to help promote blooming. Avoid high nitrogen formula fertilizers if you want to see blooming violets.
Always water through the soil and never let the leaves get wet. Watering the plants every three days is ideal if needed. The plants grow better with warm water. It is better not to get water on the leaves because of spotting. Water drops will cause dead spots on the flowers of African violets.
The most ideal temperatures for African Violets are 76 degree days and 65- 75 degree nights. Always, keep your African violets indoors and by a window because they do like their sunshine.
To keep your African Violets healthy, re-potting every six months or so is necessary. I do re-pot mine twice a year and they don’t seem to mind the delay. Re-potting gives the plants new nutrients through having fresh soil, and also helps get rid of fertilizer salts that may have built up and this will help grow new roots.
The Cactus plant is probably the easiest and lowest maintenance plant you may want to consider to grow. Cactus plants come in various shapes, color and form. Cactus can be grown in any sunny, well-drained area. They need little maintenance. They make one of the most excellent house plants you can find. Some larger-growing cactus plants make dramatic floor plants with heights from 4 to 10 feet or more.
The cactus family is one of the most distinctive, striking, diversified and specialized groups in the plant kingdom. It includes close to 2,000 species, and they are all perennial and succulent. The succulent cactus plant have leaves, stems or roots that store water and can survive extended periods of no watering. The stem swells when water is stored and slowly contracts as the water is used.
The distinctiveness of the cactus family can be found not only in the flower structure, but also in one characteristic, that, although possessed by every cactus plant, is existent in all species of all other families of indoor plants. It is the spine cushion or areole. All cacti have areoles. These areoles differ in structure on different kinds of cacti, and it is one way of distinguishing one cactus plant from another.
Some parts of the cactus are edible. To prepare for cooking, the cactus thorns must be taken out, very carefully, with a peeler. Cactus is also used as bed and pillow stuffing. Cactus is also used as toothpicks, combs, sewing needles, fishhooks, building materials and as living fences or hedges.
The best way to successfully grow a healthy cactus plant is to purchase one that is already in good health. Try to avoid any plant that has damaged spines, obvious signs of bruising, or that has lopsided or uneven growth. It’s best if a cactus plant is purchased in the greenhouse where it was grown, or immediately after shipment to a retail outlet.
Cactus can also be grown from seed and one can find many seed companies that offer packets of mixed varieties. Do know, cactus plants can year to germinate, and may take a few years to see what your young cactus plants will look like. One must take care to grow in areas free from pests, especially mealy bug.
This very attractive foliage plant compliments most containers used for indoor gardening. Coleus can thrive in sunshine, but the leaves are greatly enhanced in the shade. They are very durable and also easy to grow. You can single them out by their bright colors, and variety of foliage forms. They are also called “tender perennial” because even the slightest frost will eventually kill them.
Coleus plants are quite striking when they are planted in a container, and grown as a house plant. By removing the flower spikes as they develop, and keeping the plant pinched back, the Coleus plant can be kept in a perennial state for several seasons.
Most plant stores will have coleus plants in variety of sizes ranging from bedding plant which comes in six packs, to massive specimen sized hanging house plants. Most people buy the full grown coleus plant because of the striking color and beautiful foliage. With proper care and patience the seedlings little plants can also grow to such beauty.
The intensity of light which the plant gets will definitely have a direct bearing on the intensity of the foliage coloring. Most varieties will produce their best color in light shade, but few of this fickle plant look best in bright lighting. It is better to use florescent grow lights, to bring out even more intense and vibrant coloring. You might do better by choosing a variety of the smaller ones and watch them grow and develop into a nice, vibrant, colorful adoring house plants.
Coleus plants are easy to care for. Always keep the soil moist, but never soggy. Liquid house plant fertilizer should be applied once a month to enhance growth. The ideal growth temperature is between 74 and 85 degrees. Do keep a watchful eye for mealy bugs, aphids, slugs, snails and whitefly.
Coleus plants bring color, brightness and also compliment your indoor house garden. Since it is easy to grow and care for, include the coleus plant in your indoor gardening designs.
6. Forced Bulbs plants
It is true that during the winter month, the color, fragrance, and the magic of spring flowers can brighten a home. The easiest way to create your own indoor garden with a succession of color from December to April is with bulbs.
Growing bulbs to bloom earlier than normal, is called forcing. This technique is extremely successful with spring flowering bulbs. A pot of flowering bulbs makes a delightful addition to any indoor gardening scheme.
Some bulb plant varieties are easier to force than others. Usually Paperwhites are the easiest, for they can just be grown with only water. Any kind of container that holds water will do, but a shallow, see through one is ideal. The see through container will make it easy to see water level and also monitor the progress of the roots.
It is better to keep the water level just below the bulb, because any higher and the bulb may rot, any lower and the roots may dry out. It is a good idea to add pebbles to the container to hold the growing plants in place. Also adding a little charcoal keeps the water clean. They only need to be planted, put in a sunny spot and they will bloom in three to five weeks.
The stores are packed full of specially packaged bulbs that come already with their own pot, soil and instructions. And since they are tropical plants they need no cooling period. Just plant them into their pot with potting soil. Do remember to leave the top third of the bulb above the soil line.
Water lightly at first, and after the flower stalk is 1ft “tall, water enough so the soil is evenly moist but never soggy. Always keep in bright light, with temperatures of 69 – 76 degrees until you see the flowers begin to color. During flowering, place them in a cool spot to prolong the flower’s life.
There are other bulbs that can be forced, with the Hyacinth at the top of the list. They and many others, however, need a cooling period of 12 to 14 weeks. For them it is definitely too late for planting for Christmas. Keep this information in mind and start cooling bulbs for next Christmas in July/August/September.
Begonia plants are probably America ‘s favorite plant flowers. With tons of variety, Begonias are popular in flower beds, as container plants, for hanging baskets. Begonias are mostly prized for their flower as well as their showy leaves. Growing Begonias is very easy. They make a good indoor house plants because they tolerate shade well.
There three types of Begonias: Semperflorens, Tuberous and the uncommon Perennials. The Semperflorens are by far the most popular. They include wax Begonias, fibrous Begonias and Everblooming Begonias. Depending on type of Begonia, you can find white, red, yellow, or pink varieties. All Begonia varieties will grow compact, dense foliage, and at least 6-9 inches tall.
Begonia plants are propagated from seed or cuttings. Seeds are fine, dust-like, and take two to three weeks to germinate. Most people will buy seedlings rather than try to start these tiny seeds. Begonia plants are annuals and do not like frost in the spring or fall. The plant enjoys rich, loose and fertile soil which drains well. Always water thoroughly, and then allow the soil to dry before the next watering.
Begonias react well to attention. Always remove dead flowers, leaves, and stems. Constantly, trim off long stems to help retain its compact shape. A little care will pay you back with plusher foliage and more blooms. Apply general purpose fertilizer once a month. Liquid fertilizers work’s best.
Your begonias are generally healthy plants free from insect infestation. Keep away from frost as they will die if exposed to cold. You can easily re-pot the plants if they appear crowded. Always use rich potting soil. Keep them near a sunny window, but gradually reduce the sunlight.
Until they adjust to your indoor temperature, you may see significant leaf drop. But, in a week or two, they will be well adjusted to lower light levels and dry conditions in your home. They will brighten up your home all winter and you will love it!
Some consider it a work of art or a great indoor gardening project. Bonsai plants with their unique shapes and sometimes miniature sizes are fun to grow. Most of your guests will marvel at the plant and be prepared to answer tons of questions short of an interrogation. The plant elicits curiosity with an intense desire to know more.
“Bonsai” means “tray planted”. They grow better in shallow trays or containers. Since it is an artistic creation choose your container carefully. To most indoor gardening enthusiasts, the actual growing is not the most fun, but rather, it’s the trimming, pruning, and shaping of the plant into a unique shape that provides the reward to the Bonsai grower.
Contrary to popular believe, Bonsai plants did not originate from Japan. Yes, it originated in ancient China, and was brought to Japan over a thousand years ago and became widely popular. Its popularity in U.S home has grown tremendously in the last century. Bonsai plants blend the joy of indoor gardening with the artistic rewards of shaping a miniature plant into a work of art.
Creating a Bonsai plant is not a quick task. It’s best to buy plants already grown and shaped. Maintenance is minimal and easy to follow. They then maintain it. Some enthusiasts take up the challenge of growing a bonsai from seedlings, roots, or cuttings.
Surprisingly, Bonsai plants need the same type of care as other house plants. Provide them with plenty of sunlight or artificial grow lights. They also need protection from insects and disease. They need water and like other house plants you should fertilize less frequently than outdoor plants.
Bonsai plant is a pampered plant. For example, some Bonsai growers often let water come to room temperature before giving their plants a drink. Most growers put great effort into creating and maintaining the desired shape. While a good, sharp bonsai scissors is essential, the plant cost and maintenance is on the high side.
Geranium plants are easy to grow and do fit well in home gardens, container gardens, flowerbeds.
Home gardeners can use Geranium plants in a wide variety of ways. The plant is well suited for container gardens by themselves or with other flower plants. They do grow well in flower gardens along with your other favorites. This hardy plant can withstand light frosts but the ideal temperature is 70 degrees. Geranium plants prefer lots of sun shine.
You can grow them from seeds or cuttings. Most people buy them as small plants from garden stores at very low prices and then re-plant them around the garden or in suitable containers. It’s best to plant them in full or partial shade.
Adding compost and fertilizer will maximize growth and plant health. Geranium plants produce bright white, red or pink blooms. To promote continuous blooming, it is best to pinch or cut off the blooms after they die.
Most Geraniums plants live approximately 18 months.
Poinsettia gives out dark green leaves and bright colored flowers. When purchasing, if either the leaves or flowers are dry or brown around the edges, select another plant. At the garden store look for flowers that are completely open. Poinsettias can be slow to open, but once they bloom, the flowers can last for several weeks.
In cold weather, make sure to wrap up the plant well for the trip from the store to the car. It is true short exposure to cold and wind can damage your new Poinsettia plant before it is even home. Poinsettias are propagated by seeds, but the seeds are difficult to find.
Poinsettias will retain their blooms long after you have put away the Christmas decorations. If you are lucky, they will last past Valentines Day. After bringing them home, it is best to keep them in a sunny room; with ideal temperature range is 63 – 73 degrees range. Keep them away from drafts or high heat like a furnace vent or fireplace.
Always water thoroughly, and then let the soil dry between watering. Poinsettias plants are forgiving. If the plants begins to dry out, give them more water and they bounces right back.
Always give it a good trimming, into a nice rounded shape. Poinsettias cannot survive any frost. They can grow up to 10 feet in ideal tropical climate. Some would say poinsettias are difficult to bloom unless some tricks are forced upon the plant.
I totally disagree on this trick, like putting black bag to create total darkness. When you have taken care of the plant properly, blooming will happen naturally.
- Holiday Houseplant Care: Tips for growing poinsettia and Christmas cactus
- How to Care for Holiday Plants after Christmas
- Keep Poinsettia Flowers Until Next Christmas
- Growing Christmas Poinsettias
11. Rubber Plants
Are you searching for a carefree house plant that grows tall and can occupy a decent amount of space? The Rubber plant will be ideal for you. The plant does very good in just about any home condition and can provide years of indoor greenery if cared for properly.
The most aspect of rubber plants is the deep green and glossy foliage that can remain nice and shiny if cleaned occasionally with soapy sponge and then pure plain water.
Rubber plants are well-known to like warm temperatures, but they will tolerate a fairly wide range and can handle air-conditioned space. The best ideal temperatures for your rubber plant are around 81 degrees during the day and around 67 degrees at night.
Since most people visualize rubber plants as “jungle breed” and used to constant rain, you might be allured to over water rubber plants. Please don’t, as over watering the soil will weaken your plant and leave them vulnerable to pests, disease and maybe rot. The use of a well draining container and good soil can easily help contain this temptation.
Rubber plants grow very heavy roots rather quickly and you should be ready to re-plant in a larger container. If your rubber plant gets really tall and somehow top heavy, use a stake to give extra support or just trim them in the spring.
Try using organic fertilizer about once every month. Keep Off chemically based fertilizers. Since you’re indoors spraying chemicals on your plants can have bad effects on your health. Use only organic products to care for your rubber plants.
Rubber plants have higher resistance to pests and diseases. Over watering might cause the leaves to look a little yellow. Just give it less water. More sunshine is good cure for loss of leaves that sometimes do occur. Once In a While, mealy bugs might show up, just wash them off with a mixture of castle soap and water.
At your local nursery, you will come across large assortment of rubber plants. Just pick out the ones you like, because they all have same growing patterns and maintenance is the same across the board. Good luck on your selections; for soon you will have indoor greenery that will your friends green with envy.
Related: All about Ficus
12. Spider Plant
The spider plant is one of the most common and in all likelihood the easiest to grow, of all the hanging or trailing plants. Spider plants make wonderful houseplants. They will flourish in almost any condition in your home.
While these exceptionally sturdy plants will survive in less than perfect conditions, in perfect conditions they are awesome. They are the ideal starter plant for aspiring avid gardeners.
A very fully grown plant will form tight rosettes of arching leaves with a richness of hanging plantlets on long stems, up to three feet, much like a bushy green mane. Although there is a pure green variety, the most familiar variety seen in garden centers is the green-and-white striped variegation. Fully Grown spider plants have small white flowers.
Growing Conditions: spider plants do better when cultivated in containers and hanging baskets, where their shoots and tiny baby spider plants can hang down. Spider plants favor bright light; however, they will grow in conditions ranging from semi-shade to direct sun. Water liberally through out the summer. Cut watering back during winter. Apply liquid fertilizer weekly during the summer or you can use pellets at the beginning of the growing season.
Propagation: Spider plants are one of the simplest houseplants to propagate. Do make sure the young plantlets have developed roots. You can also divide the mature plants during re-potting. Spider plants do send out shoots or stalks. Tied to these stalks will be tiny baby plants. Lightly remove these baby spider plants and place the roots in water. After the roots have reached an inch or two, transplant them into a container with rich, well drained potting soil.
Care and Maintenance: Spider plants are very easy to care for. They prefer a well drained, rich potting soil. Check to make sure that the soil drains well as they do not like wet soil. They will benefit by being placed in a sunny window once or twice a week.
Keep them away from the window on cold nights as they do not like really cold temperatures. Do not over fertilizer or over water because the leaves might turn brown. Right the problem, prune off the brown leaves and your plant will produce new replacement leaves.
Now go out and buy some spider plants because they will enrich your indoor greenery.
13. Guide to Philodendrons
Philodendron is definitely one of the most popular house plants today. It has been gracing indoor gardens as far back as Victorian times. The plants origin is from the tropical forest. The two basic types of philodendrons are known as, climbers and non-climbers. They are very easy to grow and will compliment any indoor garden. Conditions at home are suited for the plant and they are very low maintenance.
Philodendrons are grown for their foliage which comes in a variety of sizes and different shades of green. They need very low light level conditions, you can therefore, put them wherever you want in any room of the house. Philodendrons can be cultivated either in a pot on a tabletop or in hanging baskets.
You can grow philodendrons by snipping off and rooting runners, or sections of vines. Make sure you use the vines the shows three to four tiny root nodes. It is best to grow them in a glass partially filled with water. After the roots grow to an inch or more, you can then transplant the plant into a container or pot. Make sure to keep the soil very moist and never let the soil dry out.
Philodendrons plants are so easy to care for. They prefer well drained, potting soil which is full of rich organic matter. Best to apply, organic liquid fertilizer once a month and they will grow well. Keep the plant in low light conditions in any room in your house and they will grow with thick foliage.
The thick leaves of the philodendrons plant should be given a cleaning once every two weeks, using damp sponge or cloth, to help remove dust buildup that is visible on the big, shiny leaves. The plant will whittle out from frost.
Philodendron plants do not have many disease problems, but for an occasional mealy bugs and tiny insects. Eliminate them quickly by using only organic products. Best to use a cloth to apply insecticidal soap on the leaves to help keep annoying insects away.
Impatiens is one of my favorite indoor garden plants. It provides bright colors when fully bloomed and can last a long time. You will get to love this plant as my garden would be boring without them.
They are so easy to grow and require less care unlike some other plants I know. With just a little tender care, Impatiens make excellent container plants, and will beautify any container for a lush look that requires less effort on the part of the gardener. Impatiens is simply the most popular indoor plants in the world.
These attractive indoor shade annuals got their botanical name just because their seed pods explode when they ripen, exposing their sticky seeds far and wide. Perhaps that is why these annuals are impatient to reproduce.
You will discover a good supply of impatiens at nurseries and garden centers in the spring. For optimal success, choose bushy-looking plants with leaves that are just so lush and green. Impatiens is available in many colors – pink, red, white, rose and sometimes mauve. You can purchase them in single, semi double or fully double flower forms.
Impatiens makes good indoor plants but one must be aware crucial care tips. Water is necessary for excellent growth, so make sure you water them at least every other day. Do not let the soil dry out or you might have a dead plant in your hands.
They require less sunlight. Put them in a shade and they will grow fine. Direct sunlight might wither the plant. Avoid exposing your plant to frost. Apply liquid organic fertilizer once every three weeks to produce the most succulent of all plants.
Impatiens does not have much infestation problem, but do watch out for the occasional bugs and plant insects. Use organic products to eliminate the parasites at first site and you will have well bloomed plant in no time at all.
Impatiens make great container or window box plants especially in filtered shade. With just a little tender loving care your impatiens plant will add to and compliment your indoor garden. They will bring vibrant bright colors that will make all your house plants sparkle!
15. Parlor Palm
The Parlor Palm is probably one of the most available indoor plants today. You can find it in many garden centers. It is sometimes called by the scientific name “Chamaedora elegans”. Parlor palm is just one of those tropical plants that will blossom indoors. Compared to all indoor palms, the parlor palm is certainly the slowest growing.
Small seedlings are often sold as terrarium plants and may take years to outgrow their allotted space. It is not surprising to see a plant only three feet high, but can be decades old! It is known to bloom readily indoors, but the branching flower stems have some decorative effect.
Parlor Palms do best with some filtered light, but direct sun isn’t necessary. These plants are known to survive in shady areas and so they are a great choice for not just the home, but the office as well.
It is best to buy one that is already grown and just give it some tender loving care. Try to keep the plant watered evenly. Make sure that the potting mix is always moist and allow any excess water to drain off. The plant is not finicky, so humidity will not be that important to this plant, making it a good choice for drier environments.
Do not use much fertilizer on Parlor Palms. Only use a water-soluble organic fertilizer once a month during the spring, summer and fall. You really do not need any during the winter when the plant’s growth will slow down.
Watch out for white crust buildup on the pot, around drainage holes or on the soil surface, meaning the plant is likely receiving too much fertilizer. You can flush thoroughly with water and keep the fertilizer away for a while.
Do watch out for some pest problem. Mealy bugs and spider mites all enjoy making a home on Parlor Palms. Do a quick check at every watering, to ensure that you catch an infestation in its early stages, making it much easier to treat with known organic products.
Parlor Palms are very slow growers. So shop for the size you need, not the size you think it will grow into. If you desire a large plant, buy a large one, because small plants will remain small for an incredibly long time, taking over a decade to reach two or three feet tall. The plant will improve the look of your indoor garden definitely.