10 Best Exotic Plants to Grow Indoors
As many people, especially those living in bustling cities, combat shortage of space, the way they grow a home garden has changed. What was once a unique take on gardening, has now become more than a trend – it has become a way of life. With a large number of people encouraged to bring their garden into their homes, the lookout for unique indoor plants is on. There are many plants that are very easy to grow inside our homes, but some might not be known by the average gardener. So, in that spirit, here are the 10 best exotic plants that you can grow indoors.
1. Fairy Duster
With their pearly and sparkly flowers, fairy dusters are charming and pleasing to grow inside your home. It attracts a number of beautiful birds like butterflies and hummingbirds if grown outside on a porch during the summer. A hardy plant, fairy dusters tend to grow well in arid and dry climate conditions. While it requires plenty of sunshine, it can also be easily grown indoors by placing it in a spot that receives abundant indirect sunlight.The soil needs to be a well-draining potting mix that must not remain damp or wet, while being fertile, well-aerated and having a pH range of around 6 – 7. To organically enrich the soil, you can add peat moss or compost to the potting mix. As it does not require much water, pour water only when the soil is dry to the touch, it is a desert plant after all. While there is no need to prune the plants, you can trim it down a bit to stop dense growth.
Easy to grow indoors, oxalis are perennial plants that feature distinctly beautiful triangular leaves. Interestingly unique, oxalis leaves close up during nighttime and reopen during the daytime. Oxalis plants grow well in most climate conditions; give them lots of indirect sunlight in hotter regions and lots of direct sunlight in cooler regions.To achieve lush growth, oxalis plants require fertile and well-draining potting soil that is not dense, airy, fertile and contains a pH range of about 6 – 7. Maintain a regular watering schedule to ensure that the soil is evenly moist, but not wet. After the blooming season, the plant goes into dormancy before growing back again. So, during this time, do not prune the leaves and cut back on watering and feeding. For a striking plant that stands out, get a black oxalis plant that features strikingly intense dark purple leaves.
3. Kaffir Lily
Also known as clivia, kaffir lily is a majestically magnificent plant that has strap-like leaves and features colorful blossoms. However, as they are known to be poisonous to pets and children, keep them in an area that is out of reach. Kaffir lily grows well in abundant indirect sunlight in a hotter climate and direct sunlight in cooler climates. The plant also needs good ventilation and medium air humidity.Kaffir lilies prefer to stay a little dry, so opt for a well-draining potting mix that is airy, not dense and loose. Ensure that the soil pH range stays around 5.5 – 7. You can also add peat moss and sand to help in maintaining drier soil. Only water when the soil is dry to the touch and let the water run off or drain properly. If the green leaves start looking pale, then you might be over-watering your lilies. While kaffir lilies rarely need pruning, trim off any dead leaves and flowers. If you see mealy bugs on the plant, use a cotton ball dipped in alcohol to wipe them away.
4. Madagascar Dragon Tree
Impressively tall plants with twisted stems, the Madagascar dragon tree is hardy, durable and can be easily grown indoors. Their two-toned leaves, featuring an intense red border, brings natural beauty into houses while removing chemicals and pollutants from the air. Keep the dragon tree in a spot that is out of reach as the plant is quite poisonous to pets and small children. The dragon tree requires medium amounts of sunlight for 6 – 8 hours along with good ventilation and medium air humidity. Dragon trees prefer well-draining soil that is airy, not dense and loose. Make sure that the soil pH range stays around with a pH of around 5 – 6. Add compost, sand and some clay to ensure the soil contains nutrients and prevents water-logging. As the plant is tolerant to drought conditions, water only when the soil is dry to the touch. Over-watering the plant can cause rotting and mildew. Only prune back necessary shoot tips to keep the height and growth of the dragon tree under control.
5. African Violets
Available in many varieties and colors, African violets are great indoor plants that instantly brighten up any dull corner. This beautiful and striking plant is great for pet owners and parents as it is not toxic. African violets thrive when they receive indirect sunlight for 6 – 8 hours, high air humidity and good ventilation every day. Feed the African violets plant with mild liquid fertilizer once every two weeks. While certainly a bit intensive to maintain, the reward is well worth it for this beautiful plant.While you can use good quality all-purpose potting mix, you can also make your own potting mix by mixing equal amounts of peat moss, vermiculite and perlite together. Keep the soil evenly moist, well-drained and at a pH level of around 5 – 6. Water your violets when the top layer of the soil looks dry. To ensure the soil is thoroughly wet, ensure the water runs off or drains properly. Prune away dried leaves and flowers. You can also use pruning to promote new and bushier growth. Remember to re-pot your African violets every year.
6. Peace Lily
With its brilliant white flowers and glossy leaves, peace lilies are stunningly elegant plants that require low maintenance and make for great indoor plants. The plant’s leaves droop down when thirsty and, interestingly, perks up immediately after watering. For the best growth, place it under indirect sunlight or partially shaded areas, instead of direct sunlight. Their low light requirements make this a perfect plant for a spare room that doesn’t get much sunlight. Place the peace lilies in an area that contains high air humidity and excellent ventilation of air, and away from any drafts or large temperature changes.Instead of using a humidifier, you can also place the flower pot on a flat bowl filled with water and pebbles. Peace lilies prefer well-aerated, well-draining, light and loose soil that has a pH level ranging between 6 – 7. To organically enrich the soil, mix some compost or mulch into the potting mix. Water the soil everyday when the top layer of the soil appears dry. Peace lilies grow well in moist, but not damp or wet, soil. There is no need to prune peace lilies, other than removing dead leaves and flowers.
7. Goldfish Plant
A tropical plant known for its unique blossoms, the goldfish plant is named so because its flowers look like goldfishes. The goldfish plant, featuring long and arching stems, look beautifully attractive in hanging baskets and can be grown indoors quite easily. Goldfish plants require plenty of bright indirect sunshine, good ventilation and high air humidity to blossom very well.Goldfish plants prefer fertile potting mix that is rich in nutrients, airy, not dense, drains well and has a pH range of about 6 – 7. To naturally enrich the soil, you can add some compost to the potting mix. Water the goldfish plant only if the top of the soil feels dry. As it thrives in moist soil, water the plant till the it properly runs off through the draining holes to ensure it has been thoroughly watered. If you notice green leaves falling off the plant, then you have over-watered or under-watered the plant. You can aggressively prune back goldfish plants for a bushier growth that produces more blossoms.
8. Alpine Pink
Native to the mountains of Southern Europe, alpine pink is a stunning perennial plant that features colorfully unique blossoms and dark green needle-like foliage. With the flowers available in a variety of colors, alpine pink can brighten and liven up any dull corner of your home. Alpine pink plants grow well when they receive loads of filtered sunlight for a minimum of 6 – 8 hours.Alpine pink plants prefer soil that is fertile, drains well, airy, rich in nutrients and has a pH range of around 5.5 – 6.5. To naturally enrich the soil, apply a layer of mulch or compost to the potting mix. Water the alpine pink plant only when the top layer of the soil appears to be dry. To prevent mildew, keep the foliage of the plant dry. Prune away dried or matured leaves and flowers to stimulate new growth.
9. Bird of Paradise
A tropical plant producing beautiful flowers, the bird of paradise plant is named after an eponymous bird the flowers seem to look like. Attractive and magnificent, the plant brings drama and adds flair to any place it is grown in. While the glossy leaves are large and thick, it can easily be grown indoors with a little maintenance. Bird of paradise loves indirect sunlight, high air humidity and good ventilation. As the plant is poisonous to pets and small children, keep it out of reach.Choose a large container that leaves a lot of space for the large roots to grow. It is important to use potting soil that is rich in nutrients, well-draining, loose, airy and is around a pH range of around 6 – 7. You can also add some compost and loam to naturally enrich the soil. As the bird of paradise thrives in moist soil, water generously and frequently while ensuring the water runs off properly. Prune away old and dry leaves and flowers to stimulate new growth.
10. African Iris
A striking and hardy plant featuring white blossoms and spiky foliage, African iris plants can grow on any type of soil ranging from dry soil to moist soil. Growing African iris plants indoors is very easy as the plant requires very little maintenance. If you are a novice when it comes to gardening, African iris plants are a safe bet as they are quite easy to grow. Loving unfiltered sunlight, African iris plants need 6 – 8 hours of sunlight and good ventilation.It is important to use potting mix that is rich in nutrients, well-draining, loose, fertile and airy. For lush growth, feed the plant with general purpose fertilizer once every week. Water the plant when the top of the soil appears dry. If you are unsure, press your thumb into the top soil and feel for any dampness. If there is not any, it is time to water the plant. You only need to prune away dried and dead flowers and leaves to promote new growth. However, be careful not to cut away entire flower stems.
Stepping out of the norm can be an excited experience, and we hope we’ve give you some ideas on new plants to grow. Having a unique plant can add immense beauty your home, and is always the center of attention for any room it’s in. So, with the above 10 exotic house plants, start enjoying the benefits and joy of growing amazingly exotic plants inside your homes.