There are many plants that can grow in the shade, but some of them (like succulents) need to be watered once every few weeks. If you’re looking for a low-maintenance plant, here are 10 plants that will thrive even without sunlight.
In addition to their ability to flourish in low light, these plants also have a few other benefits that make them great candidates for your home or office. They are easy to care for and they don’t need much water. In fact, the primary benefit of having a plant inside is purifying the air you breathe because they absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen.
Dracaenas are beautiful indoor plants that have elegant leaves and can grow up to 10 feet tall. The best part about them is they only need water every few weeks.
Also known as the “dragon tree”, cordylines make a great choice for an indoor plant because of their dramatic look with multiple trunks growing from one base.
Bromeliads are a popular indoor plant because they have vibrant flowers that last for months. They can thrive in low-light situations and infrequent watering schedules. They require minimal attention, just water every month or so.
Bromeliads, like the Aechmea or Guzmania genera, prefer bright indirect sunlight. They should be watered about once every two weeks (when soil is dry to touch). Bromeliads can survive quite cold temperatures, but should never be exposed to freezing air.
Bromeliads also make beautiful cut flowers! They can last up to a month and look stunning in bouquets.
Parlor palm is a lovely houseplant that can tolerate low light and infrequent watering, making it ideal for households with busy schedules.
Parlor Palm (Chamaedorea elegans) is native to Mexico and Guatemala. It can grow up to ten feet tall but usually stays smaller because it’s grown indoors. They are tropical plants that like warm temperatures between 65-85 degrees Fahrenheit. Their cold tolerance is down to 25 degrees Fahrenheit. Parlor Palm (Chamaedorea elegans) prefers soil that drains well, but still holds some moisture; they don’t like it dry or soggy for too long.
Peace lilac is a fragrant houseplant that blooms year-round. It has dark green leaves and white flowers with yellow centers.
This plant can grow up to four feet high, but it’s usually kept smaller by pruning the top growth every few months. Drought tolerance makes this an excellent choice for people who forget to water their plants.
Peace lilac (Spathiphyllum) is native to tropical rain forests in South America and Southeast Asia, but it’s just as happy growing indoors year-round. It likes bright light or a few hours of direct sun every day, so place the pot near a window facing south or east if possible. The soil should always be damp, but never soggy.
The golden pothos, also known as Scindapsus aureus is an evergreen perennial plant with leaves that are shiny and glossy on the top side. They are a dark green, yellowish-gold color with lighter veins. The golden pothos is an excellent choice to grow as a houseplant because it does not need much light and can survive in lower levels of humidity.
The golden pothos plant needs water weekly to thrive but should be allowed to dry out between watering sessions. Watering once a week is usually sufficient, but during the winter months, plants should be allowed to dry out completely between watering.
Spider plants are among the easiest houseplants to grow. They’re also one of the longest-lived, making them a great choice for a beginner. They’re one of the best air purifying plants, removing formaldehyde and carbon monoxide from indoor air.
Spider plants prefer bright but indirect light; an east or west-facing window is ideal. They can adapt to lower light levels, however, they may drop their leaves and stop growing altogether. The plants prefer moist but not wet soil; water thoroughly when the soil surface feels dry.
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This plant has long leaves that grow from a center rosette and can be variegated in green and white or yellow and white. They like indirect sunlight but will do well with bright light as well. They do not need much water and will grow in a variety of conditions.
They thrive in warm temperatures between 65° F and 75° F.
Lucky bamboo is a type of plant that does not need soil to grow and can survive only in water. Lucky bamboo plants, like other bamboos, spread quickly by sending out underground stems (rhizomes) horizontally along the ground under the surface. The stems grow very quickly and can break through the surface of a shallow pot.
Lucky bamboo likes to be kept in a glass bowl with a small amount of water, or it can also be grown completely submerged in an aquarium. It prefers indirect sunlight from either fluorescent light bulbs, near windows covered by sheer curtains, or under lights that have a grow light bulb.
Peperomia plants can be grown in pots or containers indoors. These plants grow well with bright indirect sunlight but will do fine if they are given less light, although this may affect growth and flowering. Peperomia’s typically need more water than most other houseplants, so make sure the soil is damp before you water it. The perfect time to water potted peperomias is when the top inch of soil has dried out. This can be done weekly in summer and every two weeks in winter.
They like warm temperatures, between 65° F and 75° F (18-23 °C).
The prayer plant is one of the easiest to grow. It grows well in indirect or direct sunlight, but will also do fine if it receives less light than it desires. Prayer plants need little water unless they are actively growing; when new leaves emerge and begin to fill out their red coloration, you may increase watering slightly until the plant is established. Allow the soil to dry out slightly between waterings, but do not allow it to become bone-dry or soggy before you water again.
The perfect temperature for prayer-plants is between 68° F and 80° F (20-26 °C).
James, the D.I.Y Expert, graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Horticulture from Colorado State University. Love writing blog posts and guides to help others learn how to garden!