The BestShade-lovingIndoor Plants
1st December, 2023
From luscious, leafy potted plants to lower maintenance succulents and flowering varieties, there’s nothing quite like a house plant to bring a dash of colour to the home. Whether you’re plant-mad and planning on creating a rainforest of indoor plants, or you just want a couple of plants to lift the décor of a room, there are plenty of options to choose from.
One of the biggest problems with indoor plants is that it can be hard to give them the access they need to sunlight. The good news is that there are so many plants out there that love low light indoors and don’t need the sun. These shade-loving beauties thrive inside a flat or house and will look just as vibrant on your desk or mantlepiece as they would in the garden.
So whether you want something indestructible that will help you shake that reputation as someone who can’t keep a plant alive for longer than a week, or a variety that will let you work that green thumb, take a look at some of the best shade-loving indoor plants.
Types of indoor plants that love the shade
The best house plants are those that already love being indoors and in low light. If they’re pining for the sun, it can be hard to keep them looking at their best no matter what you do.
You want a plant that loves the shade, something that’s more than happy hiding away behind a parasol of books and other fixtures in your home, positively thriving without the need for the sun.
Thankfully, plenty of plants fall into this category. Whether you want something luscious and green, a shade-loving flowering plant or something with air-purifying qualities, you’re sure to find the perfect plant for your home. Here are just a few of our favourites.
As elegant as they are exotic, serene peace lilies are a favourite with those looking to bring a touch of style to the home. Ideal for any room in the house, the peace lily is defined by its signature white flowers and its long, glossy, dark green leaves.
As an air purifier, peace lilies make a great addition to a bedroom or living room. Long regarded as a symbol of purity and healing, the peace lily is a great companion throughout the house, breathing new life into your surroundings.
Peace lilies generally don’t need the sun, so they can be placed anywhere in the home. To care for them, you’ll need to water them daily during spring and summer, and weekly during winter.
It’s worth noting that if ingested, the peace lily is toxic to pets and humans – so it’s best avoided if you have cats or dogs who like to chew things.
When you think of the archetypal indoor plant, nothing will spring to mind quite like the spider plant; a true classic of the genre. Featuring long, vibrant leaves that grow quickly, it’s a shade-loving plant that offers huge visual appeal wherever you choose to host it.
Spider plants require only moderate sunlight, so they are more than happy living in low light indoor areas like shaded corners or the bathroom, where they also appreciate the humidity. If you’re looking for a gift for someone, a spider plant may be the perfect option. These stunning plants are a symbol of caring, and can show someone just how much they mean to you.
Spider plants are also good for those who are new to keeping plants, because they don’t require a lot of care. Just water every three days or so in summer, and even less in winter, and it’ll keep itself to itself, thriving away in the corner.
Also known as devil’s ivy, the golden pothos is far kinder to your surroundings than its name might suggest. Characterised by its large, light green leaves with irregular yellow markings, this plant is celebrated as a shade-loving indoor favourite thanks to its air-purifying qualities.
Ideal for the bedroom, this beautiful yet unusual looking plant is just as at home on a nightstand as it would be on your shelves. It doesn’t need a lot of sun either, so it’s the perfect plant for low light properties.
Golden pothos require very little maintenance, so they’re ideal for those with a poor plant track record. You only really need to water them when the soil is dried out, so if you’re forgetful, you won’t be causing your plant too much harm. It’s worth noting that the golden pothos is also toxic to animals, so should be kept away from pets.
The philodendron comes in a number of varieties, so there’s sure to be one to match your home’s aesthetic and give your surroundings a little sprinkling of magic. Another air purifier, these plants are ideal for keeping in your bedroom, but make sure you get the right one.
Some philodendrons love to climb, so if you’re looking for something that won’t be set on taking over, you might want to go for the non-climbing varieties.
Featuring large, glossy, heart-shaped leaves, philodendrons are all about showing someone how much you love them, and they make a lovely Valentine’s Day gift for your special someone. They also add tropical flair to any home with their unusual leaves. And if you want to pop them outside for a little bit of greenery in the garden, they can thrive outdoors in the shade too.
If ingested, the philodendron is toxic to both pets and humans, so they’re best kept away from children and animals.
If you haven’t got a great record with plants, then the aspidistra, also known as the cast iron plant, could be the option for you. Hard-wearing, it’s the ideal low light indoor plant for those who need something that’s easy to care for.
Popular in Victorian homes, due to the fact it doesn’t need a lot of sun and could cope with poor air quality in industrial surroundings, the leafy aspidistra is an elegant addition to any modern living room. Its fan of leaves give an exotic air to the room.
As a low maintenance indoor plant, they look great and can survive in drier conditions, meaning they’re also suitable for kitchens. The size of this hardy plant can be carefully controlled, as they can be grown in small or large pots.
These shade-loving plants do not like direct sunlight, so are ideal for the indoors, and only need to be watered once or twice a month, ensuring that they dry out fully before the next watering.
The Boston fern is an iconic indoor plant, well known for its ability to thrive away from an abundance of sunlight. It does still enjoy a bit of humidity, however, which makes it a good option for those who want to add a little splash of luscious greenery to the bathroom.
With its tropical origins and its bushy, sword-like leaves, the Boston fern brings a touch of the outdoors into any indoor space, making it an ideal low light plant for smaller homes and flats. It’s also considered to be one of the best air purifiers for removing formaldehyde toxins from your home, which are found in carpets, furniture and gas stoves.
Despite not liking the sun, the Boston fern will still require a little more regular care. They thrive most when they have moist soil in their pot, so you’ll need to regularly water them.
Exotic, eye-catching and different to many of the other house plants you’re likely to have in your home, lucky bamboo is one of the quirkiest options for plants that love the shade. Featuring swirling, braided stalks and shoots, they are like a living work of art that can bring your living room or kitchen to life.
Having originated in the rainforest, lucky bamboo plants are used to the canopy of leaves blocking out the majority of the sun, so they’re more than happy to live in low light conditions. They also only need watering once a week or so. However, you should take care watering them in areas of hard water, as this can be harmful.
Providing good feng shui to your home, the lucky bamboo is a great addition to any room, as long as it has no direct sunlight. However, it is toxic to pets, so positioning will need to be high enough to keep this plant out of reach.
Also known as Mother-In-Law's Tongue, the snake plant is ideal for any bedroom or living room, especially since it has superb air-purifying properties. Characterised by tall, sword-shaped leaves, the snake plant is one of the few plants that converts CO2 to oxygen during the night, so you could wake up feeling refreshed, all thanks to your new housemate.
Simple to look after and hardy in shady surroundings, this beautiful indoor plant requires minimal direct sunlight and watering only once or twice a month. Due to their low maintenance requirements, they are the ideal first addition to your collection of indoor plants if you’ve never turned a hand to gardening before.
The snake plant is poisonous to pets and humans if ingested, so it's best to position them higher up in the room to stop kids and animals from getting too close.
Ready to find a new plant-pal to brighten up your home?