It’s no surprise homeowners are decorating their bathrooms with more and more houseplants these days. After all, what better way to display and appreciate those leafy green beauties than in the bath, where mist and humidity rise every time you shower?
Indoor plants boast a host of benefits — they help boost your mood, filter the air, absorb excess moisture and, best of all, give your bathroom a spa-like feel.
But choosing the right kind can be quite tricky. Low light, high humidity, and fluctuating warm and cold temperatures can make it very challenging for some species to thrive.
Here’s a list of ornamental plants that will flourish in less-than-ideal conditions, and help turn your bathroom into a refreshing oasis.
Best Plants For Your Bathrooms
Bird’s Nest Fern
The Bird’s nest fern makes an excellent low-light plant to keep inside your bathroom. It loves moist, shady areas like those found in its native wooded tropics. But in temperate regions, it adapts quite well as indoor plants. It is easy to take care of as it is very resistant to disease and pests.
Place your Bird’s nest fern in a pot on a shelf by the shower because it loves moisture. If you place it by the window, take care not to expose it to direct sunlight. The more sun it gets, the more its leaves tend to yellow and crinkle.
One of the easiest plants to grow, the Zamioculcas zamiifolia (Z-Z) grows fine in low-light conditions. It thrives in fluorescent office lights, so it will survive even in a bathroom without a window. Z-Z plants only need watering when the soil is dry since overwatering can cause their stem and roots to rot. Once every 1 to 2 weeks is all the watering this low-maintenance plant needs.
Also known as mother-in-law’s tongue, this hardy West African member of the lily family tolerates almost all growing conditions. They thrive in both low and bright light and require little to no water. Plus, their, long elegant leaves in variegated yellow provide a stylish and stunning accent.
There are many varieties of this tropical plant but the most common is the one with broad, upright oval leaves with scalloped edges, dark green with silvery streaks on top and a bright purple underneath.
Calatheas like medium to low light, so shield them from direct sunlight to prevent scorching. Like most tropical plants, they love humidity so they’ll do just fine near your shower. If you place them some distance from the bath area, water them just enough to keep the soil moist but not soggy.
Widely used for its Feng shui energy, this common houseplant isn’t actually a type of bamboo. Its real name is Dracaena sanderiana, a flowering plant native to Central Africa, South America, and Southeast Asia. It is a natural choice for the bathroom because it’s able to thrive in low light and just plain water. Yes, plain clean water. Just place a few stalks in a low bowl or glass vase on your countertop. Put pebbles in the bottom for support, making sure all the roots are immersed.
Another reason decorators and green thumbs love the lucky bamboo is that it can be trained to bend and form spirals, lattices, and other designs. If you want to style your Lucky Bamboo, choose a few prime stalks to make a linked arrangement and put it on display. With a bit of work, you can also manipulate young stalks to curl around each other.
You can’t go wrong with Devil’s ivy or Pothos, a popular easy-care plant. It has heart-shaped, marbled leaves trailing down its vining stems, making it a great hanging plant. You can also place it in a pot on a high shower shelf since pothos loves warmth and humidity.
Like pothos, spider plants look great in hanging planters because of their long, arching, spindly leaves. They produce tiny plantlets that can be snipped off when they start to develop roots.
Spider plants like moderate light but can also handle lower levels. They are very easy to care for, making them great for beginners and busy owners. They love moisture, too, so you can place them near the shower.
True to its name, this hard-as-nails plant is almost impossible to kill. Aspidistra elatior is native to Japan and Taiwan and is a slow-growing perennial with long, elegant, rich green leaves that open out and narrow into a pointy tip.
This plant is very forgiving to forgetful owners, as it prefers infrequent watering. It prefers low light and shaded areas but also does well in filtered sunlight.
The peace lily has dark green glossy leaves and elegant white flowers. It tolerates low light conditions but needs bright sunlight to bloom in the spring and summer months. Since it’s a native of the tropics, a daily misting in a steamy shower will make the peace lily very happy.
Able to thrive in subpar conditions, this shiny, dark green, leafy beauty can go without water for long periods. While it prefers indirect sunlight, it will also do fine in low light. Hang your philodendron on a planter or place it on a shelf by the window. It’ll thrive without much care and is said to be almost impossible to kill. Plus, they’re known to remove air-born toxins such as formaldehyde from the air.
With its long graceful fronds full of lush frilly leaves, the Boston fern is a winner in aesthetics and style. It’s found in many plant-loving homes, often hanging on macrame hanging planters. Ferns are used to low-light conditions and absolutely love moisture. So mist these beauties regularly and keep them in a cool location away from direct sunlight.
The quintessential office plant used to adorn filing cabinets and credenza tables, the Chinese evergreen or Aglaonema is another low-maintenance plant perfect for beginners. It’s often chosen precisely for the fact that it can thrive despite much neglect. These beauties can handle just about every indoor condition including dark rooms with low fluorescent lighting. They’re tough and resilient, yet classy and attractive — with wide, leathery leaves, some dark green with silvery streaks; others with splashes of pink, red or yellow. Water these once a week or once every few weeks — it doesn’t matter, they’ll do just fine.
Contrary to popular perception, bromeliads are tropical plants that are very adaptable and resilient, able to thrive in low light conditions. They will flourish in windows and under fluorescent lights, requiring little maintenance. They do love humidity and good airflow so place them on a shelf by the shower where they can soak up mist or by the vent or window where there’s good circulation.
Bromeliads in the Nidularium, Vrieseas and Guzmania varieties grow best in dim lights.
Cissus rhombifolia is so-called because its leaves resemble those of grapevines and its small, dark berries resemble grapes. This attractive ivy makes an excellent hanging plant but it can also climb up or spread horizontally. It adapts well to low light and needs watering only when the soil has dried out.
This jungle epiphyte is nicknamed “Swiss cheese plant” because of the odd-looking holes and cuts in its large, dark green leaves. The Monstera can grow into quite a bit of a monstrosity, so make sure you have enough space in your bathroom for it.
Place it on the floor ideally with some back support such as a moss stick or an exposed wall pipe. Direct sunlight can burn its leaves but darkness can slow its growth, too. So find a spot in your bathroom with the right balance between sun and shade.
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