If you want to add color and flair to your home decor, then you might want to explore the different ways you can use house plants to create a stylish, welcoming room. In recent years, indoor trees and tropical house plants have been used to brighten living rooms, decorate entryways, spice up bedrooms, enrich window sills, furnish offices, and adorn kitchens. Low-light plants are a popular choice because they are low-maintenance and can grow well anywhere, but some people prefer fast-growing options to fill a space.
From beautiful indoor tropical plants with colorful flowers and big leaves to large potted trees you can grow inside, there are many types of plants that can thrive indoors when cared for properly with the right amount of sunlight and water. To inspire you with green ideas, we compiled a list of the best indoor trees and tropical house plants that will flourish in your home!
Tropical House Plants and Trees To Grow Indoors At Home
House plants are good for your health and offer many benefits at home. Indoor plants not only elevate a space, but studies have shown that they reduce stress and fatigue, improve your mood, increase creativity and productivity, and clean the air in your home by absorbing toxins and producing oxygen.
Tropical plants and small trees are versatile, have a timeless aesthetic, and can accommodate all kinds of decor styles and interior designs. Large floor plants can be placed next to couches and windows for a classy touch or used as budget-friendly alternatives to minimally decorate open spaces in living rooms.
Small tree plants can fit anywhere and deliver a pop of color with broad appeal. Tall indoor plants make cozy living rooms and bedrooms feel larger and more vibrant. Exotic plants with big leaves can be eye-catching, while small and medium-sized greenery can help you grow a luscious indoor garden.
Common tropical house plants and trees you can choose to grow include the Bird of Paradise, Dragon Tree, Norfolk Island Pine, Ficus, Corn Plant, Parlor Palm, Yucca, Split Leaf, Anthurium, Chinese Money Plant, and mini Palm Tree.
Whether you live in an apartment or home with a farmhouse, rustic, modern, traditional, minimalist, or French country style, there are a variety of house plants to look at.
Here are 30 amazing tropical indoor plants and trees to consider when decorating your home!
Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia reginae)
When grown outdoors, these plants produce gorgeous flowers that resemble birds. It is rare for them to flower indoors, but the large, smooth leaves still add color and texture to a room.
Birds of paradise need bright light to flourish, but it can be either direct or indirect. This plant does best in humid conditions but can also grow well in a drier climate with weekly watering.
Even if you don’t live in the tropics, these plants can help you feel like you’re on an island getaway.
European Olive (Olea europea)
Houseplants have seen a huge rise in popularity lately, and one of the trendiest plants is the European Olive. They have a simple sophistication to them, and the sage color of their foliage is very on-trend.
Olive trees need full sun for at least six hours a day, so keep them in a room with plenty of natural light. They grow well in drier climates, so you can let the top inch or so of soil dry completely before watering.
This elegant tree can truly elevate your living room and home decor.
Tree Fern (Cyatheales)
When you think of ferns, you probably think of lush, feathery plants that grow close to the forest floor. But tree ferns, which are native to Australia and New Zealand, can grow to truly immense proportions.
These plants come from a humid environment, so they need plenty of moisture. Make sure the soil is always kept moist. If you live in a dry climate, consider getting a humidifier. They do best in light that is bright but filtered or indirect.
With their height and intricately lacy leaves, tree ferns are a beautiful addition to any home.
Flamingo Flower (Anthurium andraeanum)
For a houseplant that brings in a pop of color, you won’t regret getting an anthurium. Also known as a laceleaf or flamingo flower, this plant features smooth, sturdy green leaves, as well as some modified leaves in shades of pink or red. Because of its appearance, this cute indoor tropical plant should be placed on an entry or coffee table for classy decor.
These sturdy air plants don’t require much care. They do well in bright indirect sunlight, and watering should be spaced out several days apart to allow the soil to partially dry out.
If you’re looking for a plant that’s high on style but low on effort, anthuriums are a pretty choice you’ll love in your home.
Indoor Palm Tree (Arecaceae)
The indoor palm tree is the ultimate tropical plant for your home. Most palm trees are easy to grow and maintain because they adapt to their surroundings. This amazing plant will provide a stately and majestic presence in your home. While this type of palm tree will eventually become a big tree, these types of plants are known as slow-growers and this process will take years.
Indoor palm trees grow well with bright indirect sunlight throughout the year, but can still flourish in low-light or shady parts of your house. You’ll want to water regularly and maintain moist soil to help them thrive.
This indoor palm is one of the best tropical plants you can have at home. Alluring and lovely, it instantly adds style and can enhance the decor of any room.
Split Leaf (Monstera deliciosa)
The Monstera is a tropical shrub that features natural holes in its leaves, which has led to it having the nickname “Swiss Cheese Plant”. When Monsteras are grown outside they can bear fruit, but rarely will indoors.
Monsteras can thrive in both medium and bright indirect light but should be kept out of direct light. Since they’re in indirect light, they only need to be watered weekly or biweekly.
These plants are low-maintenance, but still visually striking enough to be a conversation starter.
Triangle Ficus (Ficus benjamina)
Ficus trees are popular in home decor because their height and glossy leaves are very visually appealing. But many ficus trees are finicky and require very detailed care. The triangle ficus is one of the least fussy plants in this family.
Also known as a weeping fig, the triangle ficus needs bright light flourish. Without natural sunlight, its leaves could wither and fall. They don’t do well in the cold, so it is recommended you keep them in a room that won’t drop below 55 degrees Fahrenheit. You should water them very slowly until the soil is soaked through, and then let the soil dry out before the next time you water them.
A triangle ficus can grow 8 feet tall and their branches, which are filled with shiny green and white leaves, can spread out four feet wide. It’s an amazing focal point.
Cordyline (C. terminalis)
If you want to break away from a traditional leafy green house plant, a cordyline offers a colorful alternative with a cute style. These bold tropical houseplants come in many variations, but all of them grow with unique foliage that will spruce up your room.
One popular version of this plant features long pointed leaves in colors like green, red, yellow, and purple, all exploding out of the pot like a firework. The other kind grows taller with large green and red leaves. You can choose which type is ideal for your home decor.
These hardy plants do well in bright but indirect light. The soil should be kept perpetually moist, except in the winter.
If you want to make a statement, place this cool indoor floor plant in the corner of your living room for added flair.
Rubber Tree (Ficus elastica)
You might think that the rubber tree gets its name because of its thick, dark, waxy leaves that resemble tire treads. But its latex sap was once actually used to make rubber.
While a rubber tree can survive in bright direct light, it will flourish in indirect light that is medium to bright. This indoor tree only needs to be watered every week or two, although you should increase the frequency if they’re in constant bright light.
These plants are easy to care for and have a cool look to them that helps ground the space.
Parlor Palm (Chamaedora elegans)
When shopping for houseplants, many people gravitate towards something small and unobtrusive. Parlor palms can grow up to six feet tall, so they’re perfect for people who want to make more of a statement with their plant decor.
While many palms do well in bright sun, a parlor palm does best in medium to indirect light. It can be watered weekly, but make sure that the water flows down into the roots.
Because these plants grow so quickly, they need to be re-potted about once a year. This gives you a great opportunity to bring in new decorative elements by changing the style of the pot.
Corn Plant (Dracaena fragrans)
These plants are often known as “corn plants” because they feature thick stems and long, narrow leaves. The overall effect resembles stalks and husks, but with a tropical vibe.
Direct sun can burn the leaves of this plant, but too little light will dull the leaves and stunt growth. A room with filtered sunlight is ideal. During spring and summer, the soil should be kept perpetually damp (but not soggy), but you should pare back your watering schedule in the autumn and winter.
These plants propagate very easily for anyone who likes their collection to keep growing.
Kentia Palm (Howeia)
These striking palm trees are decor worthy of royalty. In fact, the Kentia Palm was a favorite of Queen Victoria, who kept them in all her residences.
Kentia palms are easy to care for since they do well in filtered but bright light, and only need to be watered once a week.
If you don’t live in a tropical climate, this plant can help you bring a tropical flair to your home. They can thrive indoors even if you’re not in a remotely tropical climate,
Umbrella Plant (Schefflera amata)
The schefflera plant is also often referred to as the “umbrella tree” since its distinctive drooping leaves resemble an unfurled umbrella. The name “schefflera” refers to a genus of flowering plants that come in many forms, including trees, shrubs, or lianas.
These plants need indirect light, but that light should still be bright. When they don’t get enough light, they can become too floppy. It’s easy to over-water these plants, so let the soil dry out completely before watering.
Schefflera grown outside can become large and dramatic thanks to having room to spread out. An indoor one, like a dwarf umbrella, is way less imposing but still fun to look at.
Philodendrons have large, glossy heart-shaped leaves that overflow from the pot, giving this plant a lush look. This cute indoor plant can be the climbing type or self-heading (non-climbing) kind. The climbing variety should be placed high or in a hanging planter, while the non-climbing version looks perfect on a window sill, in the kitchen, or on a living room table.
These plants do best in low or medium light and can go one or two weeks between being watered. They will begin to droop if you water them too frequently. You’ll want to water or mist more often in the summer and less in the winter.
If you’re looking for a low-maintenance plant that will thrive even if you don’t tend to it daily, a philodendron is a classic choice and will look great anywhere in your home.
African Violet (Saintpaulia)
This flowering houseplant features soft fuzzy leaves and delicate purple blossoms. Even though they’re dainty, they still have a compelling look.
These small houseplants can bloom in low light, but they’ll flourish in medium or bright indirect light. Their leaves can easily rot if they get wet, so water them directly on the roots.
This charming little plant symbolizes loyalty. Between that and the furry leaves, you can treat it like a cute pet.
Pilea (Pilea peperomioides)
More commonly known as the Chinese money plant, the Pilea peperomioides is a whimsical-looking houseplant featuring coin-shaped leaves perched on the end of long, straight stems.
Pileas grow best in sunlight that is bright but indirect. They can be watered every week or two, but be sure the soil is dry before adding more moisture.
A Pilea plant looks cute and quirky but is easy to care for her. It’s a great choice for a young, fun person who is always on the go.
Yucca (Yucca elephantipes)
The long, spiky leaves of this tree could look intimidating, but their springy bright green color gives it a sense of whimsy.
Yucca primarily grows in southwestern climates and does well in hot arid environments. They need full sunlight, or at the very least bright indirect sunlight. Make sure they have plenty of drainage as overwatering is the easiest way to kill a yucca.
These hardy plants are easy to care for and have a ton of character and personality.
Dragon Tree (Dracaena marginata)
If you want a houseplant that makes a big visible impact, a dragon tree may be the right choice for you. Its twisted trunk is topped with spiky green leaves with red edges, and even indoors it can grow as high as ten feet tall.
Dragon trees need medium to bright indirect sunlight for growth. This plant’s leaves will start to fall off if it doesn’t get enough light. They can flourish in a wide range of temperatures and can go as much as three weeks between watering because of their drought tolerance.
A dragon tree not only makes a great focal point for a room, but it’s also incredibly easy to care for.
Fiddle Leaf Fig (Ficus lyrata)
Fiddle Leaf Figs are popular in large part thanks to their striking beauty. This cute indoor plant features plenty of large, curvy, emerald green leaves, with delicate veins that create an almost geometric pattern.
This flowering plant can be very difficult to care for. The Fiddle Leaf Fig traditionally grows in the lowland tropical rainforest, which means it require lots of bright indirect light. This ornamental tree doesn’t tolerate drafts well, so the pot needs to be kept away from doors and air vents.
Further, they don’t do well being moved around, so once you’ve found the right place in your living room or around your house, this plant should stay there. The waxy leaves can collect dust, so you’ll want to gently wipe down each big leaf periodically. They need proper drainage so you can flood them with water every seven to ten days without drowning them.
Fiddle Leaf Figs can be difficult to care for, but they are a truly lovely addition to home decor.
Orchids come from all around the world and different variants are found in different climate regions. Tropical orchids are especially popular as home decor thanks to their iconic blossoms.
Tropical orchids do well in bright, indirect light and only need to be watered about once a week. Take care not to overwater them.
Orchids come in an array of colors, including white, pink, purple, and orange. They can add a great pop of color to your decor.
Natal Mahogany (Trichilia emetica)
This lush potted tree boasts piles of glossy emerald green leaves overflowing from delicate stalks.
Most indoor plants need to be kept by bright sunny windows, but Natal Mahogany does remarkably well in low light. It even thrives under fluorescent lights. This plant does require that its soil is consistently moist, but not soggy.
If you want to brighten up your office, the Natal Mahogany is the perfect houseplant thanks to its adaptability to light.
African Candelabra (Euphorbia ammak)
If you want a unique decorating piece that will make a big statement, choose the African Candelabra for your home. These ridged, spiny plants look like a cactus but they’re actually in the succulent family, and they can grow over eight feet tall indoors.
When it comes to sunlight and watering, less is more with African Candelabras. Once they’re established, you need to step back and let them grow on their own. These plants don’t do well with wet soil, so they need lots of drainage. A high-quality, careful setup will ensure this succulent thrives.
This striking plant is easy to care for and will give your guests something to talk about.
Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla)
Around the holiday season, many stores will carry small potted pines for seasonal decor. With more delicate and softer needles, these tropical plants tend to be Norfolk pines. They look like a miniature Christmas tree and can make your home feel more festive.
Norfolk Island Pines are not like traditional pines that grow in cold regions. These houseplants are strictly tropical and needed plenty of bright direct light. Along with full sunlight, they also need acidic soil and a lot of humidity, and should be misted weekly or kept in a room with a humidifier.
If you have a small home, consider using this type of pine tree as an alternative to a full-sized Christmas tree. The Norfolk Island Pine is an eco-friendly option, as you can use the same tree every year.
Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)
Peace lilies are a popular choice for home decor because their lush green leaves and delicate white blossoms are aesthetically pleasing. Easy to grow and maintain indoors, the Peace Lily will bloom for months and continue to contribute to a simple yet gorgeous decor style.
Peace lilies need to be kept in a relatively bright room with sunlight, but only require medium indirect light to grow strong. The soil needs to be kept consistently moist, but you must also take care not to overwater them. You’ll want to water and mist throughout the summer and reduce the amount in the winter.
While peace lilies are lovely, you should opt for something else if you have pets. Like most other members of the lily family, peace lilies are toxic to cats and dogs.
Amazon Elephant’s Ear (Alocasia x amazonica)
This plant gets its name from its large floppy leaves. The dark green leaves have striking silvery veins running through them.
Amazon Elephant’s Ears can be tricky to care for. They need alternating bright light and shade, but the light can’t be direct. Their soil needs to be moist at all times, but you must take care not to overwater them, especially in the winter.
These plants are stunning to look at and provide beautiful seasonal foliage, but the level of care they require may be a dealbreaker for you.
Dumb Cane (Dieffenbachia seguine)
Dumb Cane has some similarities to Amazon Elephant’s Ears. They both have large, floppy, waxy leaves that are comparable in size. Instead of featuring veins though, these leaves are pale on the interior and dark green around the edges.
In the wintertime, these plants will need bright light to keep thriving. But during the growing season, you can reduce the light to indirect with intermittent shade. In the summer, they should be watered twice a week, but you can reduce that frequency in the winter.
This houseplant has a distinctly tropical feel and can liven up your living space.
As one of the easiest tropical plants to grow, Bromeliads come in an array of bright colors and are often compared to orchids because of their delicate appearance. These striking tropical plants can easily brighten up a home.
These colorful and sturdy plants do best in bright indirect sunlight and can be epiphytic or grown in soil. When kept in soil indoors, they should be watered weekly in summer and less frequently in winter.
It would be easy to glance at bromeliads and assume they’re a delicate flower, but they’re a surprisingly sturdy little plant.
Fishtail Palm (Caryota)
When you picture a palm tree, you might imagine spiky palm fronds. But not every palm looks the same. This palm has jagged edges that resemble the fins and tail of a fish.
Fishtail palms aren’t difficult to care for, but the routine can be time-consuming. It needs humidity, so it should be misted daily or kept by a humidifier. Even if your plant gets plenty of indirect sunlight, experts recommend taking it outside from time to time for more air and sunlight.
While fishtail palms are cool little plants, the maintenance they require is not for everyone.
Finger Palm (Rhapis excelsa)
Also known as a Rhapis Palm, this tree gets its name from its long, thin leaves that resemble fingers trailing through the air. This small fan palm has a bit of a quirky look.
Unlike some palms, the finger palm does best in dappled light or even light shade. While they need to be watered copiously in the summer, you can water them as little as once a month in the winter.
Many indoor palms can grow quickly and overtake the room, but a Rhapis Palm is a nice compact alternative.