While we all adore the large variety of sun loving succulents and cacti out there, not everyone has the ability to give their house plants the bright, direct rays of sunshine most of them require. Fortunately, there are tons of house plants, cacti, succulents and tropicals, that thrive in low light environments and they are just as beautiful as their sunny counterparts.
Also commonly referred to as the Mother-in-Law's Tongue, this tall, slender plant is excellent for beginners because of it's ability to tolerate neglect. The Snake Plant's tall, dark green leaves are very dense and hardy, and they rarely turn brow – even if under watered. When taken care of properly over the years, some varieties can grow up to 5 feet tall! Snake plants are known to remove formaldehyde and benzene toxins from the air in your home, making it a great choice for your bathroom or kitchen. It enjoys low light and it's drought tolerant.
Low to medium indirect light. Snake plants can be placed in north, east, or west facing windows. They're not too picky!
Snake plants prefer to be watered moderately, and it's important to keep them out of standing water since they are prone to rot. Err on the side of less water, because they're much more sensitive to overwatering than under watering!
Free draining soil is the best option for Snake Plants. It is important to have either a drainage hole in the pot or a layer of rocks below the soil.
A close cousin to the aloe plant, Harworthia are hardy succulents that prefer indirect sunlight. In their native home of South Africa, they grow under the shade of larger bushes. They are slow growing, but they can produce tiny white flowers mid-summer. This plant is perfect for all of those succulent lovers who don't have the proper lighting conditions for the sunnier succulent varieties.
Medium, indirect light is preferred. If exposed to direct light, the leaves will shrivel up.
Like most succulents, Harworthia prefer minimal watering and thrives on neglect. Because this kind of succulent doesn't like direct sunlight, take care not to overwater.
Harworthia are used to growing in sandy terrain, so well draining soil is essential. Any cactus or succulent mix will do.
This succulent is unique because it grows like a tree, with a thick trunk and branches. While this plant can thrive in a sunny location, it can also do well in a low light room. It has long been rumored that growing a Jade Plant in your home will help you “grow” your wealth, which is why it is sometimes called the Money Plant. Jade Plants are indigenous to South Africa, and they're fairly easy to maintain.
Jade Plants can tolerate anything from direct sunlight, to low light situations.
Allow the soil to dry out between waterings. Water moderately.
A cactus and succulent mix is great for Jade Plants.
Staghorn Ferns are a unique variety of fern that, well, resemble a Stag's horns! Most of them feature a “shield” at their base for some added protection, and it's totally normal for them to turn brown. These ferns are great for low light rooms and they grow well in hanging baskets or mounted on boards. Just like the popular air plants, Staghorn Ferns are Epiphytes so they grow on top of other plants and trees in the wild.
Staghorn Ferns prefer medium to bright indirect light. They're used to growing on the trunks of trees, so they naturally prefer some shade.
Staghorn Ferns need to be misted or soaked once per week. If misting, take care to mist the entire plant. When soaking on a board, leave it in the water for 10-20 minutes.
As mentioned earlier, Staghorn Ferns prefer to grow on other plants. If placed in a basket or pot, it is important to use fast draining soil such as cactus or succulent mixes. When mounting on boards, they prefer sphagnum moss.
Another type of low light succulent, this Madagascar native is sought after for it's cute, fuzzy leaves (hence their name, the Panda Plant)! They're slow growers, and it typically takes up to two years for new leaves to grow. Panda plants are very easy to care for and can usually be left to their own devices. One important thing to mention is that these adorable plants are actually poisonous to cats and dogs, so keep them far away from your furry, loved ones!
Panda Plants enjoy their shade, so bright to medium indirect sunlight is ideal.
Only minimal watering is necessary. Take care not to overwater.
Well draining soil is necessary. Cactus or succulent mixes are perfect for Panda Plants.