Although everyone dreams of having open-concept spaces that are flooded with light, that’s not always the case. For apartment-dwellers and anyone else living in low light conditions, finding greenery can feel intimidating. While the best indoor plants can help brighten up a space and remove toxins from the air, a common misconception is that they need a ton of sunlight to survive.
In reality, there are tons of low-light indoor plants that can thrive in shady areas and even under artificial light. Most of these plants are difficult to kill, even by a beginner who doesn’t have a green thumb.
Things to Consider When Buying a Low-Light Plant
- Watering: Frequency is important to know, as is keeping an eye on the soil. Some plants prefer to let the soil dry out before being watered again, while others prefer consistent moisture. Feeling the soil before watering is key.
- Humidity: Lots of the best low-light indoor plants are tropical, which will require a somewhat humid climate. If you have a radiator, baseboard heater or live in a dry climate, buying a humidifier or mister can help to mimic a rainforest condition.
- Temperature: Origin is important to consider with plants — since you’ll want to recreate their native climate, it’s important to know whether they’ll be able to survive in the temperature of your home, and research the climate so you can adjust the variables.
Whether you’re looking to spruce up a balcony, a windowless room, or somewhere with minimal sunlight, these are the best low-light indoor plants to buy right now.
1. Snake Plant Laurentii
With its upright, sword-like leaves tinged with yellow edges, the snake plant is a low-maintenance low-light indoor plant that makes a statement. Plus, it has some serious air purifying qualities to keep your home as fresh as possible. It’s so easy to care for, you might actually kill it if you overcare for it.
2. Dracaena Fragrans ‘Lime Light’ Plant
Add some bright and cheery foliage to your space with the electric green Lime Light plant, also known as the Dragon Tree. Ideal as a low-light indoor plant, this glossy beauty grows well at room temperature, but make sure to keep it away from cold drafts.
3. Staghorn Fern
While ferns often have a delicate look, this Staghorn Fern stands out from the crowd with its uniquely fuzzy texture and bold leaves that resemble elk horns. This low-light indoor plant can grow up to 35 inches tall and wide based on how well it’s taken care of.
4. ZZ Plant
MOST DROUGHT-TOLERANT PICK
The elegant ZZ plant features waxy green leaves that grow like tapered feathers. Complemented well by The Sill’s chic planter options, the ZZ is a low-effort plant that always looks healthy and can tolerate extremely low light, making it perfect for a windowless room. However, it isn’t pet-friendly and is best kept out of reach.
5. Artisan Moss Preserved Fern Kokedama
Give your home magical forest vibes with this preserved fern Kokedama, which is a root ball of a plant coated in soft green moss. One of the most unique hanging plants you can find, this handcrafted fern will give any home an organic yet modern aesthetic.
6. Money Tree
BEST PET FRIENDLY PICK
If you live with four-legged friends and are worried that a plant might be toxic to them, consider the Feng Shui-friendly Money Tree plant, which makes a statement in any room. Featuring a braided trunk and large, star-shaped leaves, this pet-safe plant has the ability to match any home decor.
7. Bromeliad Collection
BEST POP OF COLOR
If you want a pop of color in your plant rather than a traditional bouquet, opt for the dazzling Bromeliad plant, which is filled with vibrant reds, oranges, and maroons. Surprisingly easy to care for, these exotic-looking low-light indoor plants only bloom once but go on to grow “pups” that bloom their own flowers.
8. Low-Light Bundle
BEST LOW-LIGHT BUNDLES
Available in two different sizes and combinations, this air purifying bundle does great in low-light conditions, removing known toxins from the air. As functional as they are pretty, these plants all thrive off a lack of care, but all of them need to be kept on a windowsill or surface that pets aren’t able to access.
9. Whale Fin Sansevieria
BEST FOR MINIMALISTS
If you’re the type of person that doesn’t like to jump on a trend bandwagon, consider the timeless and minimalist Sansevieria, which is also referred to as the Whale Fin plant, hence the shape. With its single leave and stunning dappled effect, this is a standout low-light indoor plant that will impress guests.
10. Large Cast Iron Plant
The resilient Cast Iron plant, especially in this large size, is a beautiful way to make an everlasting home decor statement, even if you don’t have natural light. This slow-growing can grow up to 4 feet tall and arrives in a stylish mid-century planter on legs that works with both classic and contemporary interiors.
11. Spider Plant
BEST TROPICAL PICK
If you have no sunlight whatsoever in your room and only have artificial light, the tropical spider plant is an adaptable choice that’s easy to grow and keep alive. With its long and dangling spider-like offshoots, this pet-friendly option requires moderate moisture and can be used as hanging or trailing plants.
12. Calathea Majestica
BEST DESKTOP PICK
With a striking striped pattern on its leaves that almost looks painted on, this small Calathea White Star is the perfect way to spruce up your desktop setup. It offers a dynamic look with its white, deep green and pink hues that work surprisingly well together, and thrives in low to bright indirect light.
13. Red Chinese Evergreen Plant
BEST PURIFYING PICK
With complex foliage including red, green, pink and white hues, these low-light indoor plants can add a splash of color to any drab room, instantly brightening it up without taking over. It makes an eye-catching statement on its own or with other plants and can make your room way more refreshing thanks to its air-purifying benefits.
14. Monstera Deliciosa Floor Plant
Lovingly nicknamed the “Swiss Cheese” plant due to the stylish cutouts in its leaves, this floor plant is best suited for a hallway, corner or entryway. Although it grows fast in bright, indirect light, it does fine in low light conditions, and is also semi-drought tolerant, making it a low maintenance yet trendy pick.
15. Pothos Plant
The Pothos is a gorgeous option that’s known for its toughness and durability. With heart-shaped glossy leaves adorned with a waxy texture, this purifying plant will grow successfully in a shady room or even on a balcony. A lush choice that’s easy to care for, even for the most forgetful gardeners.
16. Lucky Bamboo Spiral
With its handsome, sculptural stalks, lucky bamboo is a plant that can help increase feng-shui. Ideal for anyone looking for an alternative to leafy foliage and bouquets, this plant needs to grow roots in water before it’s planted. With some weekly watering, this plant will be more than happy in a low-light environment.