House Plants Buying Guide: How to Choose One for Each Room

A group of topiaries in urn planters

Bring a little life into your home by adding house plants to each room. They’re often an inexpensive way to express your design aesthetic and are fun to switch out or add as the seasons’ change and/or your mood changes. Have fun with choosing house plants but also know which ones are going to work for what rooms. For plants to thrive, you need to ensure they are getting what they need.

How To Choose House Plants By Room

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The right house plant will bring a touch of nature, beauty, calmness, and the perfect scent. They can even improve the air quality and stimulate mental acuity offering a bit of an unexpected health benefit. But it all stems from choosing the correct house plant for each room and for your green thumb, or lack thereof. Here’s a quick buying guide that we put together to help you choose the right house plants for each room of your home. 

Choosing a House Plant for your Living Room

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The living room is often the focal point of the home. It’s where you and your family hang out, watch TV and talk about everything so it is very important to have plants that will stimulate that activity by offering a sense of warmth and inviting as well as offering some extra O2 as all plants do. The first thing to consider is the amount of light your living room gets and how much plant care you want to provide.

Bamboo Palm: A bamboo palm is a great option for house-plant beginners as its easy to care for and only needs partial sunlight. Even more importantly, it is inexpensive, hard to kill and non-toxic to cats and dogs. It is also listed by NASA as a Clean Air Plant, meaning it cleans the air of harmful chemicals. A healthy bamboo palm has luscious dark green leaves and can grow up to 12 feet tall. Although in lower light, they will likely only be about 4-6 feet. Bamboo palms look great in floor planters and should be in a pot with adequate drainage (be sure to put a floor protector underneath) and high-quality indoor potting soil. Water with room temperature water only until the soil is moist. With proper care, bamboo palms will bring joy and peace to your living room for many years.

Peace Lily: The peace lily is another fabulous house plant option for your living room. They are easy to grow and can raise the humidity level in your living room by as much as 5 percent! That added humidity can help keep runny noses at bay and your skin from drying out. The peace lily is also a NASA Clean Air Plant. Place the peace lily on a plant stand or console table by a window for extra light. It will adapt to low-light situations but will flower nearly nonstop if given adequate light. The peace lily is an easy maintenance plant as well. It thrives in temperatures above 60 degrees so don’t let your temperatures drop too low. Keep the soil moist at all times but don’t overwater. Please note: The peace lily is toxic to dogs and cats so be careful if you have pets.

House Plants for the Bedroom

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Your bedroom is a place for rest and relaxation. Ensure you choose house plants to enhance this expected experience.

Weeping Fig: The weeping fig removes common airborne toxins and increases oxygen levels making it an ideal plant for helping one sleep better. A study by the Department of Crop Science indicates that the weeping fig holds antimicrobial agents, as well. Caring for your weeping fig is relatively easy. Ensure it gets plenty of water but allow the soil to dry just slightly between waterings. It needs partial sun but does enjoy warm temperatures and high humidity. If you notice drooping leaves, your house plant is stressed. Try increasing moisture levels with an in-home humidifier, water less or more, or increase light exposure. To ensure you don’t over- or under-water, utilize a self-watering planter. The weeping fig is toxic to cats and dogs.

French Lavender: The scent of lavender is credited with promoting calmness and serenity and often associated with lowering stress. So naturally, it makes sense to keep lavender in the bedroom. Whether in a planter stand by the window, in a wall planter by the headboard or fresh cut flowers on your bedside table, it can help ease you into a state of relaxation. Plus, it is low maintenance and has a gorgeous purple hue. Ensure it has access to sunlight and water it regularly. Allow the top inch or two of soil to dry out between waterings.

Sleep well with these top house plants.

Picking a House Plant for the Kitchen

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What do you do in a kitchen? Eat, of course! Therefore, edibles are the obvious choice of house plant for this room.

Herbs: From basil to chives to mint to rosemary, herbs are a natural addition to your kitchen. They require a small pot, sunlight and a little bit of water. The real benefit of herbs though is they are so great for cooking. Toss a handful of fresh basil leaves into your home-cooked pasta or a muddled mint leave into your glass of lemonade or hot tea. Many herbs will grow year-round indoors so choose the ones that you will actually use in recipes and that will thrive in your particular kitchen. There are many wall planters or windowsill options for herbs so they won’t take up that vital kitchen counter space.

Lettuce: Bibb, butter, red or leafy green – lettuce is another great pick for your kitchen. However, lettuce is a bit fickle and will require some attention to grow indoors. If you’re starting from seeds, monitor often and keep the moisture level high but not waterlogged. A liquid fertilizer is recommended, as well. Lettuce should be ready to harvest in about 3 to 4 weeks. Only cut off what you need starting with the outer leaves first and trim each leaf at the base of the plant.

Enjoy your fresh meal additions!

The Best Choice of House Plants for the Bathroom

Bathrooms are often small and humid so house plants that thrive in those conditions are ideal.

English Ivy: English ivy is a great choice because it clears the air of benzene, formaldehyde (which can outgas from a waterproof shower mat or shower curtain) and, most importantly, airborne fecal matter. The ivy prefers very moist air, so won’t be damaged by shower-created steam. Because ivy is a trailing plant, potting it inside requires regular trimming. You can, however, use the trimmings to grow new ivy plants, making it an extremely cost-effective plant. While ivy needs moisture, it also likes cool nights. If possible, shut your bathroom heating vent overnight to keep it a bit cooler. Ivy leaves are poisonous if ingested by humans or pets.

Aloe: With its medicinal properties, aloe makes great sense to keep in the bathroom. Plus, talk about low maintenance. The aloe vera plant needs low to moderate sunlight and doesn’t need much water to survive. In fact, the humidity created in the bathroom is often enough to sustain it. It also has clean air properties and absorbs carbon dioxide at night. Aloe serves as a great ointment. Just snap off a leaf and use the gel inside to treat minor burns and abrasions, which is great to have in a bathroom!

How to Choose the Right Plant for the Dining Room

A dining room is a place to gather for a meal or just chat around a table, and house plants can make great conversation pieces!

Snake Plant: This striking-looking plant is sure to grab your dinner guests’ attention when used as a dining room table centerpiece and can open a conversation. It requires indirect sunlight and occasional waterings. Soil should dry between each water. The snake plant is an extremely tolerant plant and is perfect for a novice gardener. They can be neglected for weeks and be brought back to life by picking up their regular care. They are prone to root rot so use a free-draining soil when potting.

Lucky Bamboo: This is another house plant that is easy to maintain but has such a unique look. Lucky bamboo centerpieces are a great addition to any table but especially the dining room table where people gather. While most of the other easy-care house plants mentioned require little water, lucky bamboo is quite the opposite. When inside, it usually grows in pebbles and water. The roots of the plant need to be completely covered by water. Change the water every 4 to 6 weeks for best results. Lucky bamboo will thrive in most light conditions but does best in low, indirect light. In feng shui, the Chinese philosophical system of harmonizing everyone with their surrounding environment, lucky bamboo is said to bring good luck and fortune, so who wouldn’t you want this plant in their home?

Are You Ready to Buy Your House Plants?

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There’s a lot of research, knowledge, and understanding of the plant and your home that should be done before getting house plants for each room of your home. Hopefully, this blog serves as a solid starting point. The most important thing to remember is to choose a plant that suits the light and temperature requirement of your rooms. Don’t get anything too complex to care for if you aren’t up to the challenge. And if you really want an easy-to-care-for house plant, go faux! They are very lifelike and can bring just as much joy, ambiance, and brightness as real house plants.

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Posted by: Amandah Blackwell

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