10 of the best bathroom plants
Here are ten low-maintenance plants that will thrive in your bathroom.
Looking to spruce up your bathroom? Bring on the botanicals with these ten beautiful houseplants. All of the following suggestions are very happy bathroom plants: they enjoy lots of humidity, so the steam from all those baths and showers is ideal for them.
As a safe bet, be sure to avoid over-watering these plants, plant them in a good draining potting mix in bright, in-direct light and keep them away from hot and cold draughts.
For more on houseplants and container planting, head to our pots page. And don't miss our houseplant columnist Jane Perrone's monthly houseplant suggestions.
The best bathroom plants
Monstera deliciosa (Swiss cheese plant)
The Swiss cheese plant, or Monstera deliciosa, hails from tropical rainforests, so it will feel right at home in a humid bathroom, where it will give a jungly feel. The leaves develop their distinctive holey shape as they age – ensure that your plant has enough bright but indirect light to achieve this. The Swiss cheese plant is actually a vine, so in time it will need something to climb up, such as a mossy pole. Wipe the leaves occasionally to keep them shiny and free of dust, and water when the top few centimetres of compost dry out, letting any excess water drain away.
Nephrolepis exaltata (Boston fern)
The Boston fern, Nephrolepis exaltata, and ferns in general, make ideal bathroom plants as they love moist air. Keep the potting mix moist at all times, but never let it become waterlogged – allow any excess to drain away after watering. Mist the leaves regularly or let the steam from a bath or shower do the work. Boston ferns are best placed away from direct sunlight so the leaves aren’t scorched by the sun and will thrive in medium to bright light. The elegant arching fronds look especially great in a hanging planter.
Spathiphyllum (peace lily)
If you have a darker bathroom, a peace lily may be a good choice as it can handle medium to low light (although if you want the white flowers to bloom, place it somewhere with direct light). The soil should be kept moist but never wet, and these bathroom plants can handle long periods of time without watering – they wilt rather alarmingly when they do, but perk up quickly.
Phalaenopsis (moth orchid)
The flowers of the moth orchid can last for weeks, with re-flowering occurring year after year with the right care. Orchids prefer under-watering to over-watering and it's best to water only the roots, keeping the flowers and leaves dry. These are perfect bathroom plants and thrive best in a bright room away from direct sunlight.
Chlorophytum comosum (spider plant)
The spider plant is one of the most adaptable houseplants and is a great for houseplant beginners. Its hardy nature makes it a great bathroom plant, as long as you have a bright room. As with most of the plants on this list, leave the soil to dry out between waterings. Its long leaves look great in a hanging planter or basket.
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Epipremnum aureum or Scindapsus (devil's ivy)
So called because it is supposedly impossible to kill, devil's ivy grows naturally in tropical forests, so is another lover of humid conditions, and an ideal plant for your bathroom. It only needs a light watering if the top two inches of soil are dry and it can be grown in either soil or in vases of water, and is tolerant of both light and dark rooms.
The Chinese evergreen is native to Asia and New Guinea and comes in a variety of shades, from light green to red to silver. Generally, the lighter in shade the leaves are, the more light it needs to stay happy. It is best kept in a warm and moist soil. Keep it in a slightly acidic potting soil. 'Crete' is a has beautiful red-splashed leaves.
Wax flower (Hoya carnosa)
Also known as the wax plant or wax flower, Hoya carnosa is an attractive hanging plant. 'Tricolor', as its name suggests, has leaves in three colours – white, green and pink. If it is grown in a bright enough spot (it can even take a little direct sunshine), it may also produce clusters of sweetly scented flowers that you can enjoy as you bathe.
Fittonia (nerve plant)
Fittonias have eye-catching veined leaves which are said to look like a network of nerves. They love humidity and are often used in terrariums – so they make good bathroom plants. This is a plant that needs a higher level of care – the soil needs to be kept evenly moist (but not waterlogged) at all times.
Adiantum raddianum (maidenhair fern)
Another popular plant for a terrarium, and therefore for a humid bathroom, too. This elegant plant has delicate, lacy leaves that contrast well with the bolder leaves of other plants. Keep the soil evenly moist (but not waterlogged) at all times.
Katie is a Staff Writer for HomeStyle magazine and YourHomeStyle.uk. She previously worked on Gardens Illustrated magazine and has written for various other lifestyle magazines and brands. She particularly enjoys writing about indie and eco homeware brands, interior styles through the ages, urban gardening, and decor hacks for small spaces. She is also responsible for HomeStyle's buyer's guides, so you'll often find her testing out the latest homeware gadgets and kitchen appliances.
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