Can I successfully grow tropical plants indoors–even in the winter? Yes you can, with some TLC. The winter months can go on and on. I don’t know about you, but about this time every year I am desperate to get grow something and get my hands in the dirt! And there is just something about tropical plants that instantly refresh and brighten up any living space. Tropical plants can be somewhat of an investment, and because of this, you may be leery of bringing one home. But be bold, there are some tropical plants that welcome beginners.
Here are my 5 favorite (because they are the easiest to keep alive) tropical plants to grow indoors.
1. The Areca Palm
Just seeing this plants brings calm to my senses and a strong desire for a mojito! The Areca Palm is a very popular house plant that can grow up to 6ft tall. This plant likes a lot of bright indirect light. Quick Tip: need to know if you space has enough bright light? The Sill has a quick way for you to determine the best place for your plant based on the amount of light it needs. The Areca Palm also loves humidity so get have your spray bottle handy and give it a quick spritz daily. You can do it, it only takes a minute. Plant the Palm in a pot with good drainage as the roots will not tolerate being saturated in soil. Allow the first 1-2″ of soil to dry out before watering. You can fertilize the Palm once a month with a liquid fertilizer at 1/2 the recommended strength.
2. Snake Plant
If you need a little boost in your confidence that you can keep an indoor plant alive, buy a snake plant. The snake plant might be the most tolerant plant to grow. Not only are these plants very easy to grow, they do a great job in helping keep the air clean in your home. So how do you take care of the snake plant? Put them in indirect sunlight and water sparsely. That’s it! You can fertilize every couple of months if desired, but that is about it with these plants.
3. The Dracaena Cornstalk
Chances are you have or are currently growing a variety of Dracaena in your home as they require very little maintenance. The Cornstalk is one of my favorites because of it’s palm like appearance. The Dracaena Cornstalk likes bright indirect light and just enough water to keep the soil moist, but never soggy. Also, these plants like to be pampered just a bit and have their leaves dusted every once in a while. Simply take a wet cloth or paper towel and gently wipe down the leaves. As will all indoor plants, plant in a pot that has proper drainage to prevent water from soaking the roots of the plant.
4. Zanzibar “ZZ Plant”
The “ZZ Plant” as it is known, can be given to your friend who has a hard time keeping anything alive. This plant is nearly indestructible and can go a couple of months without attention! They do best in bright indirect light, but will tolerate low light as well. Like most tropical indoor plants, water minimally, especially with this one. I think they may call this the “ZZ Plant” because you can grow this plant in your sleep!
5. Peace Lily
Peace Lilies are beautiful plants and with the air purifying qualities they bring into your home, they are worth the extra maintenance they require. Peace Lilies like shade and some indirect light. Preferably a south or west facing window. Keep plants away from a draft as they like a temperature between 65 and 80 degrees. Peace Lilies like to be watered in intervals; give them a big drink and let them dry out a bit; then repeat. If the leaf starts to droop a bit, it’s time to restart the interval as this is the plants way of telling you they are thirsty. You can fertilize the plant once in the spring and summer. Organic fertilizer is best as the Peace Lily can be sensitive to chemicals. Ensure that the pot holding your Peace Lily has great drainage as this plant is highly susceptible to root rot.