If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on our website, SPY.com may receive an affiliate commission.
One of the easiest ways to liven up any room in the house is to add a splash of green, most often in the form of a plant. While the process of buying and placing the plant is pretty straightforward, one thing that is often overlooked is that real indoor plants need to be cared for. Granted, if you have a green thumb, that isn’t too difficult. But, if you just can’t seem to keep anything green alive or you simply don’t have the time, finding the best artificial plants to liven up your home may be a great option.
Why You Might Want a Fake Plant as Decor?
As noted above, many people aren’t fit to be plant parents. Whether you constantly forget to water the plants or you can’t figure out fertilizer, you’ll likely have tried and failed to keep greenery living.
On the other hand, some spaces aren’t suitable for live plants, either. If your home is perpetually cold, tropical plants will suffer. Furthermore, if your home doesn’t have much natural light, you’ll find it difficult to grow anything except succulents.
Fear not! Not only do quality artificial plants look remarkably similar to the originals when done well, but they also save you time, effort and worry by never requiring anything more than an occasional dusting. And, you can pick out everything from figs to palms, even if those plants wouldn’t normally be suitable to grow in your space.
A Note on Artificial Plant Materials
The majority of artificial plants are made from a mixture of plastic and polyester, but some are marketed as silk. Granted, some very high-end artificial plants are actually made from silk and look gorgeous, but the industry has not regulated the use of this word. Therefore, the term ‘silk plant’ has become synonymous with ‘artificial plant’ in marketing materials. Occasionally, the word ‘silk’ might indicate that the plant is more natural-looking, but that’s not always the case.
If you actually want to purchase a high-end silk plant, expect to pay more than $200. And, make sure to look closely at the list of manufacturing materials before you buy. Otherwise, expect everything to be made from that plastic-polyester mix. Keep reading for some tips on how to find plastic plants that still look amazing.
What to Look for When Shopping Artificial Plants
There’s a wide variety of artificial plants on the market. Pick the wrong one, and you’ll be left with plastic greenery that is never going to appear classy. Pick the right one, and your guests might almost be fooled into believing you have a green thumb. Here’s what to look for when shopping for the best artificial plants.
- Appearance – Check out a couple pictures of the real plant you’re trying to replicate. When you compare that photo to the artificial plant, check that the faux version has leaves that are the right color on both the top and the bottom. Also, take a peek at the trunk and stems to ensure they are similar to those of the real plant.
- Texture – Granted this is difficult if you’re shopping online, but you want to make sure the texture of the artificial plant is nice, especially if you’ll be brushing past it often. For online shoppers, pay attention to the reviews for insight on how the plant feels.
- Reviews – As always, take a look at the reviews before you buy. Look for any reviews that say the plant is prone to losing leaves, fading or has pieces, like veins or twigs, that come easily unstuck.
How to Ensure Your Artificial Plants Don’t Look Tacky
First off, let’s get this straight. Your artificial plant is probably not going to look real. Yes, the industry has come a long way in the last 10 years, but there’s still a lot of work to be done before faux leaves and flowers are close enough to fool onlookers into thinking they are the real deal.
Still, there are a few tricks to making artificial plants look better. Here are our tips:
1. Pick the right plant for the space – Make sure the plant isn’t going to be too tall or too wide for the place you want to put it. Also, the type of plant you’re trying to emulate matters. Tropical plants might be used in modern and open spaces, whereas ferns and ficus are better for more traditional living rooms.
2. Place it well – You want your artificial plants to look like the real deal. So, don’t put them somewhere you wouldn’t put a real plant. Look for somewhere with natural light.
3. Fluff and then fluff again – If you’ve ordered your artificial plants online, you’ll need to do a lot of fluffing to get them to look real. Bend and twist all the leaves and branches. Then, let the piece breath overnight before you bend and twist some more.
4. Add a new pot – Pick out a container that fits the style of your room and then place your artificial plant inside. Most of the time faux plant containers lack any sort of style.
5. Don’t forget to dust – Yes, real plants accumulate dust, too, but it gets washed and blown away when you water. Artificial plants will likely need to be dusted every week or two.
Who Sells the Most Realistic Fake Plants?
We’ve looked far and wide for the best fake plants, and we have been pleasantly surprised by the variety and quality available. However, some retailers sell better artificial plants than others. For our money, the retailers we’ll be turning to for our faux forest are:
- World Market
- Crate and Barrel
- The Sill
- Joss and Main
Below, we’ve put together a list of real plant alternatives that actually look, well, real. From decorative palm leaves and desktop pots to hanging vines and classy corner plants, these are the best artificial plants that will deliver a dose of green to your home.
1. Faux Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree
Why is the Faux Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree the best artificial plant on the market today? Because it’s amazingly on-trend, lending the perfect pop of green to any room. In addition, the plant comes with posable branches, which can also help to make the tree taller or shorter, depending on your needs. Plus, the veined leaves mimic the real thing, bringing a unique texture to this piece that you won’t find in many competing options. Simply drop the black base into any pot and you’ll have an instantly satisfying home decor addition.
2. Ashland Tropical Leaves
BEST INDIVIDUAL STEMS
Nothing says relax and unwind like having tropical plants within your view. And while you can’t always be on the beach, with a few of these Ashland Tropical leaves, you don’t have to be. Stick one or two of these well-crafted plastic leaves into a long-stem vase and let your mind wander to tropical destinations throughout the day. For added variety, mix and match the Monstera Leaf, Bird of Paradise, and the Fan Palm Stem to create the ideal tropical oasis.
Ashland Tropical Monstera LeafCourtesy of Michaels
Ashland Tropical Bird of ParadiseCourtesy of Michaels
Ashland Tropical Fan Palm StemCourtesy of Michaels
3. Faux Maguey Pick
Designed to mimic the American aloe plant, this single, thick stem can be used solo or combined with other artificial plants to create an arrangement. Sightly succulent in appearance, we love that you can place this in a simple, glass vase to create a minimalist decor piece. Furthermore, this “plant” is made from plastic and iron wire to require little maintenance and to allow you to slightly rearrange the stem and petals, if necessary.
4. JUSTOYOU Artificial Hanging Plant
If you can’t spare floor or desk space for adding a bit of green to your interiors, then give this artificial hanging plant a go. Each leaf is made from a high-quality cloth and plastic mix to give this plant a more convincing appearance than many other options on the list. You can also choose between watermelon, ivy, and Scindapsus vines for your decoration. Plus, you can hang or wall-mount the arrangement.
5. Faux Silver Dollar Eucalyptus Stem
For the best artificial plant that compliments your other home decor rather than stands out from the crowd, consider this Faux Silver Dollar Eucalyptus stem. The gray-green, coin-shaped leaves are delicate and boast small buds to make them more realistic. Grab a tall vase to show off a single stem or add this piece into a larger arrangement. You’ll find other similarly colored and sized options at Crate and Barrel.
6. Project 62 Artificial Travelers Banana Leaf
As we move from stems into larger plants, you’ll notice that prices steadily increase. That’s why we love shopping at Target for our artificial plants. Not only do these plants look real, but they are available at amazingly low prices. Take this Project 62 Artificial Travelers Banana Leaf as an example. It stands nearly three feet tall, features at least six full leaves and comes in an attractive white, ceramic pot.
7. Faux Aloe Plant
Bring lax desert vibes directly to your pad with this faux aloe plant. The four aloe plants nestled together are textured for added authenticity, and with the pot, the whole setup reaches 18 inches in height. The minimalist terracotta pot makes the whole set-up neutral enough to fit in with any interior color scheme. And, as an added bonus, no fluffing or rearranging of leaves and stems is necessary. This plant is ready to be displayed straight out of the box.
8. Faux Succulents in Low Round Pot
Although succulents are the easiest plants to keep alive in your home, you may be in a position where keeping anything alive is difficult. If that’s the case, look into getting some tiny artificial plants, like these Faux Succulents. They come in an attractive low round pot that looks amazing on a desk or coffee table but can also be used on bookshelves or in display cases. The plump leaves look real, while the soft colors add an element not often found in artificial plants.
9. IKEA FEJKA
MOST TROPICALLY INSPIRED
How gorgeous is this faux Monstera? Highlighted with large bright green leaves, this is an Instagram favorite, and it is sure to add a cheery color to your home. The design is both modern and classic, lending an air of sophistication to your living space. It stands at seven and a half feet in height and comes in a small container that can be placed into another decorative ceramic pot of your choice. As an added bonus, this artificial plant can be used both indoors and outdoors.
10. Nearly Natural Pothos
BEST WITH VASE
If you prefer the idea of an artificial plant for a desk, tabletop or shelf, the Nearly Natural Pothos Plant may be the right choice for you. Obviously, the plastic build still means this plant requires no watering or daily maintenance, even though the life-like appearance may have you convinced otherwise. The plant is presented in a wicker-like pot, and it’s an ideal substitute for those who can’t keep a plant alive no matter how hard they try.
11. Nearly Natural Agave Plant With Black Planter
Using a combination of 58 life-like leaves, the Nearly Natural Agave Plant creates a classy dose of green finished with a stylish, natural-looking base. This plant definitely doesn’t look fake. The convincing look is completed by a gray-green color, mimicking the real colors of the warm weather, desert plant. This particular artificial plant also has over 450 five-star reviews on Amazon from happy customers.
12. Artisan Moss Preserved Fern Kokedama
When it comes to artificial plants, the Artisan Moss Preserved Fern Kokedama is one of the most unique options we’ve ever seen. This is actually a real kokedama, a traditional Japanese art form that translates to ‘moss ball’, that has been naturally preserved. No upkeep is required, meaning you can simply hang this from any hook in your house and forget about it. Yet, because this was once a real plant, it looks amazingly lifelike.
13. Silk Tree Warehouse Artificial Silk Bird of Paradise
Enjoy this artificial birds of paradise tree in any room of your home. Standing five feet tall, it is sure to become the topic of conversation for all who enter your home. It comes in a weighted container that easily transfers into the pot of your choice.
14. Gracie Oaks Artificial Lemon Tree
Add a bit of Mediterranean flair to your home with the Gracie Oaks Artificial Lemon Tree. Complete with moveable silk foliage, a plastic stem, fake lemons and a pot liner, this tree is available at three different heights, starting from just under two all the way up to six feet high. Simply slip it in a pot of your choice and cover the top with a bit of straw to complete the high-class look.
15. Nearly Natural Sansevieria Plant
The Nearly Natural Sansevieria Plant comes ready to display in your office or home space. It includes an attractive, decorative black planter, which gives it a stylish look capable of blending with a range of interior designs. It also sits at 35 inches high and is therefore large enough to add color to your space without overpowering it. This is one of the best fake plants for anyone who loves to bring a natural feel to their home but was born without a green thumb.
16. Joss & Main Artificial Ficus Tree in Planter
Place this 41-inch ficus tree in any room for an instant decorative update. Highlighted by lush, dark green leaves, guests will never be able to tell this plant isn’t the real deal. In fact, Joss & Main has also included some natural details, like slightly off-color leaves, to add to the guise. This piece comes potted in a sand-colored planter that works well in any space, making it easy to place it anywhere you’d like as soon as you get it home.