Everyone knows that plants help clean the air and generally brighten up the environment. But what if your environment isn't quite bright enough to keep your plants alive? What if your home is naturally on the dim side, or you work in an office with only a few windows?
With a little bit of planning, this doesn't have to keep you from reveling in an environment that's teeming with lush greenery! There are plenty of plants that thrive in a low-light setting.
Here's a few of our favorites:
This common and beautiful plant is perfect for both well-lit and low-light environments, but won't do well with bright, direct sun. They do best when their soil is allowed to dry out between waterings. Pothos plants send out vines when left to their own devices. These can be trained to wrap around a trellis or can be pruned off. Should you choose to prune them, the cuttings can be placed in a container of water where they'll grow roots. you get a whole new plant for free! The "Silver Satin" and "Neon" varieties do very well with low light. With the pothos strains that have multicolored leaves, you may notice a loss of that coloration if they're not receiving enough light. If your formerly multicolored plant starts growing only green leaves, it's not getting enough sun.
2.) Lucky Bamboo
First of all, the curly stalks that most people call "Lucky Bamboo" isn't actually a bamboo plant at all. It's a type of Dracaena plant. Lucky for us, this plant is also super easy going and can actually be somewhat difficult to kill. It can be grown hydroponically (in water) or in soil, but it looks truly stunning in a glass vase with some glass chips in the color of your choice. Change the water every two to four weeks with a drop of liquid fertilizer for good measure. You may also want to use distilled water because these plants can be sensitive to the fluorides and salts in tap water. If you're noticing brown ends on the leaves, that may be what's causing it. These plants do not do well in direct, bright sunlight.
3.) Snake Plant
Also known as "mother-in-law's tongue," this spiky plant not only tolerates low-light conditions, NASA also found that the S. Trifasciata strain is very effective at removing toxins from the air, especially one's related to Sick Building Syndrome. While this plant can live happily without much sunlight, it will grow more slowly in such conditions. It only needs watering once the top inch of soil is dried out, but it does require that the soil drains freely. Otherwise, this lovely plant can develop root rot!
4.) Peace Lily
Another imposter, this plant isn't actually a lily at all! It's a type of Araceae and it's another plant that made NASA's list of plants good for cleaning household air. This durable plant has been known to survive in rooms with no windows at all - its leaves may actually yellow if the plant is left in direct, bright sunlight. The easiest way to maintain a watering schedule is to simply wait until it begins to look a bit droopy. Once that happens, it needs a drink. This plant is super drought-tolerant and letting it get to this point will not harm the lily. However, it can be somewhat sensitive to chlorine, so if your tap water is heavily chlorinated, you can either use distilled water, or let the tap water sit out overnight.
5.) ZZ Plant
Also known as Zamioculcas zamiifolia, this plant is lovely, hardy, and excellent air purifier. It needs very little water - in fact, it can die from over-watering. If you see the plant yellowing, try watering it less often. It doesn't require any specific type of potting soil. It is happy with being fed any balanced houseplant fertilizer once a month. Even if you have a total brown thumb, this plant will likely do well for even the most neglectful gardener.
Disclaimer: ZZ plants are toxic - so make sure you wash your hands after handling and keep them away from pets!
These plants all do well in conditions with less sunlight and many are highly effective at improving the quality of the air you're breathing! Just remember, cats and dogs frequently will try tasting plants in their environment, so if you have pets AND plants, make sure they're safe to be around one another. Strap on your gardening gloves and make a trip to the nearest greenhouse. It's time to go green, even if you don't have a lot of light!