Indoor plants: which are the best for decorating your home?

Plant lovers, experienced gardeners or simple enthusiasts with (more or less) green thumbs, this article is for you. Not everyone is lucky enough to have open spaces, and therefore to be able to devote themselves to the relaxing and satisfying activity of gardening, but this does not mean that one must give up the joy and warmth that a beautiful plant has to offer; in this sense, the green solutions for interiors represent the right compromise.

In addition to being precious decorative elements, indoor plants keep the air clean from pollution and filter it by retaining humidity, carbon dioxide and fine dust; they also contribute to our psychophysical well-being, because taking care of them – or even just contemplating them – improves our mood.

The range of houseplants to choose from is wide and varied. They range from evergreen to succulent plants, from tropical plants to flowering plants, from those that grow vertically to those that grow horizontally – and the choice cannot be based solely on a mere aesthetic factor. There are several evaluations to make if you do not want to risk giving the plant a short life. So let’s see some tips to avoid making mistakes!

Advice on choosing plants in the house

How can windows help us to take care of our green corner at home in the best possible way? 

Undoubtedly, one of the most important aspects for the growth and well-being of plants is lighting, and that is why the right regulation of the entry of natural light into the house can make a difference.

To have the maximum freedom and autonomy in managing the brightness in the home, it is possible to count on the support of the different types of dimming systems. These, in addition to protecting the privacy of the house and helping in maintaining the right internal temperature in every season, can be decisive for taking better care of our beloved plants. An example? The adjustable slats of the motorized sunshades allow you to switch from a condition of full light to the penumbra with a simple click, avoiding excessive solar radiation for our indoor plants without having to move the pots.

  • Indoor plants: how to choose them?
  • What needs to be evaluated
  • Temperature, light and humidity: the main factors
  • Which indoor plants to choose?
  • Evergreen plants
  • Flowering plants
  • Succulent plants

Indoor plants: how to choose them?

If you love plants, you will already know how difficult it is to resist the temptation to be enchanted by the charm of certain flowers, certain leaves or certain colors. However, it must always be remembered that plants, as living beings, need certain environmental conditions to survive . Therefore, when you decide to “adopt” a plant to embellish or complete the style of the living room, kitchen or any other room in our apartment, we will have to ask ourselves if the one we have chosen has the right characteristics for the environment to which is destined.

What needs to be evaluated?

First of all our lifestyle , that is how much time we spend at home and how much we can devote to the care and maintenance of the green; Furthermore, it is necessary to consider whether there are animals and / or children in the house – to exclude plants that have poisonous parts or rough and pungent leaves – or the design of the environment , precisely because they must create a continuum of style and be well integrated into the context . The space available is also important: since indoor plants grow quickly , if space is limited you will have to opt for those of limited size or for the timeless succulents.

Temperature, light and humidity: the main factors

In addition to the conditions mentioned above, there are three main aspects to take into account before buying an indoor plant: temperature, humidity and light.

  • By temperature we mean the average present in the house: a few degrees can make the difference to prefer a particular species to another. If temperature changes are frequent, it goes without saying that too delicate plants are not for you.
  • The presence of humidity in the air , due to the location of the apartment itself and the use of the kitchen and bathroom, could favor the presence of certain species but be harmful to others. Among the most important precautions relating to this point there is also that of never leaving water stagnant in the saucers: they can cause the roots to rot and lead to the formation of mold.
  • The light discourse deserves a separate chapter . Exactly as it happens for outdoor plants – which are divided between those that need direct exposure to sunlight, others that require shade and middle ways that find their ideal habitat in the partial shade – also the plants from indoors they need light, however almost never direct exposure to the sun’s rays. In fact, a little light will lead to slow growth and pale colors, but overexposure significantly increases the risk that the leaves will burn or that the plant will go into distress. It is therefore necessary to pay close attention to this factor in relation to the characteristics of the species we have chosen, and maybe help in managing the brightness through the use of dimming systems, as mentioned above. In this sense, in addition to adjustable sunshades, also venetian blinds, shutters and roller shutters can make the difference.
Oknoplast solar shading with adjustable slats

Oknoplast solar shading with adjustable slats

Which indoor plants to choose?

After many – but necessary – premises, here we are finally at the highlight of our overview: what are the best indoor plants ? Let’s review the technical data sheet of the most common, with some gems for true connoisseurs. Let’s divide them, first of all, into three macro groups : the evergreen, the flowering ones and the succulents.

Evergreen plants

They do not flower and shed few leaves: they are the queens of the apartments because they are extremely elegant and with a great aesthetic impact.

  • The Pothos is a climber and, generally, is placed in bowls to hang or placed on high shelves, from which the small heart-shaped leaves fall scenographically (the lianas, or its branches, can reach two meters in length). It is easy to manage and resistant even in the most difficult environments, such as bathrooms and kitchens. They need a bright location, but not direct exposure to sunlight, it should be wet a little but regularly. They do not survive in cold environments (they are tropical plants!).
  • The Tronchetto della happiness (or Dracena), mindful of its subtropical origin, loves warm environments (25 °) and with the right degree of humidity. It suffers from drafts, stagnation of water and direct exposure to light. The leaves must be sprayed daily, but it does not need pruning: you just need to be careful to remove the dry leaves both for aesthetic reasons and to reduce the risk of parasitic diseases.
  • The Alocasia Black Velvet is a real treat. It is beautiful and decorative: thanks to its large dark green (almost black) leaves, with a velvety texture. It has modest dimensions, so it is also suitable for small spaces – as long as they are bright and without drafts. Suffers from low temperatures. It has one drawback: if ingested, the leaves are poisonous. Not recommended for those who have pets and small children at home.

Flowering plants

The name itself says it: it is the plants that bloom. It is necessary to distinguish between annual ones, that is, which bloom only once and then die, and those that bloom for several years (but which, to do so, require more care).

  • The Orchid has always been one of the most loved plants. Undoubtedly beautiful, but also demanding: it fears the cold and climatic changes, requires high humidity (therefore the vaporization of leaves and stem must be frequent) and abundant non-direct light. Watering must be regular (every 3/5 days) avoiding soaking the substrate, and it is advisable to keep the plant away from drafts.
  • The Medinilla Magnifica is a masterpiece of nature: large leaves and numerous hanging flowers of varying color reminiscent of bunches of grapes. It is not very common, so it is perfect if you want to live with a non-trivial plant. To flower it needs a lot of light: it can be left exposed to direct light during the winter period, but never during flowering. Obviously it prefers warm environments (it suffers below 15 °) and abundant humidity: in addition to the vaporization of the leaves (not the flowers, which could get stained), a trick is to leave a little water in the saucer which, evaporating, guarantees the right humidity to the plant.

Bromeliad has very particular flowers that resemble the pineapple tuft. He makes himself happy with little: indirect light and regular watering in the thick-leaved version. It blooms only once and its life expectancy is low (between 3 and 6 months).

Succulent Plants

Equipped with very particular fabrics, succulent plants (improperly called fat) store large quantities of water. It is not true that they do not need treatment: they do, and how!

  • Echeveria is among the most popular succulents, thanks to its fleshy and compact leaves arranged in pink. Blooms, loves warmth and fresh air. Be careful not to remove the layer of dust present on the leaves, and above all not to wet them: if during watering (to be done only when the soil is dry) it is not possible to avoid them, it is better to immerse the pot in a little water in so that the earth absorbs the necessary moisture.
  • Sansevieria comes in different varieties: beyond aesthetics, it is much loved because it purifies the air, it is small-medium-sized (and therefore lends itself to adorn even the smallest-sized apartments) and needs little attention, especially abundant light and mild temperatures.
  • The Christmas Cactus (or, more scientifically, the Schlumbergera) is the right middle ground between those who want an indoor plant with a flower (its are red, lilac or pink and it blooms right at Christmas) and a succulent that does not need great care (mild temperatures, especially). It purifies the air from pollution and, being an atypical cactus – that is, without thorns and with falling leaves – it can be placed in tall or suspended pots. 
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