Not all bathrooms are created equal! Some are expansive and flooded with sunlight from oversized windows, while others have limited space and little to no natural light. Let’s explore different types of bathrooms and talk about which indoor plants work best in each space.
Bathrooms with Zero Sunlight
Clearly, indoor plants require sunlight to survive. Plants will struggle to live for as long as possible in darkness, but eventually they will in fact die. There are, however, three ways you can sustain greenery in a windowless bathroom.
The first is to keep the lights on for 8 hours a day, or add artificial lights, such as LED grow lights. A second solution is to rotate your plants from a brightly lit room to your bathroom. This will give them exposure to sunlight, allowing them to produce energy every few days. Once they have perked up, you can display them in the light-challenged bathroom. The third option is to replace indoor plants on a regular basis, as you might do with cut flowers.
Regardless of how you choose to introduce indoor plants into your zero light bathroom, there are a range of indoor plants that will perform relatively well.
Featured Zero light Tolerant Plant: Syngonium
Arrowhead Vines are a very determined indoor plant species and can survive for a long time in dark spaces. The pink, coral and white varieties will begin to lose their rosy hues and turn green over time as they fight to increase the green surface area that is able to photosynthesize.
Bushier syngonium may begin to vine more quickly in a light-challenged space as it seeks to find the sunlight it needs to survive. To maintain a compact shape, you can trim the vines, but keep in mind that the plant will grow very slowly in a dark space.
Arrowhead Vines also love high humidity, so feel free to shower away!
Other indoor plants you might consider for dark bathroom include:
Bathrooms with Medium Light
This is the ideal setting for indoor plants. If your bathroom has one or two windows facing east or north, you will be able to choose from a plethora of plants!
Featured Medium Light Indoor Plant for Your Bathroom: Philodendron
This versatile houseplant is perfect for a bathroom that received 4-6 hours of indirect sunlight per day. The large leaves will catch the sun’s peripheral light and adapt easily to shady environments. The vining types--like the Brasil Philodendron--will show off their painterly variegation when given ample light and humidity. Best of all, Philodendron are easy care plants, allowing you to focus on cleaning and watering yourself while enjoying the beauty of your houseplants!
Upright forms of the Philodendron can be a good fit for your bathroom as well. Larger upright species can be displayed as floor plants or on the vanity. Smaller species--like the Philodendron Birkin, Moonlight and McColley’s Finale--can grow at eye-level and then be re-potted and placed on the floor!
To control the size of your Philodendron, simply prune it. Philodendron are known to be vigorous growers and can quickly take up too much space in smaller bathrooms.
You can always train your vines to grow vertically up a stake!
Other indoor plant to consider for Medium Light bathrooms are: Calathea (they love humidity), Dieffenbachia, Draceana, Alocasia, Ferns, Maranta, Pothos, Monstera, Spider plants and ZZ plants!
Bathrooms with Bright Light
Some bathrooms are blessed with giant windows and are drenched in sunlight. A room with sunlight available all day long is very much like a greenhouse, but keep in mind there are some limitations to rooms that allow the direct rays of the sun to reach the leaf surface. Cacti and succulents thrive in direct sunlight, as long as the humidity is kept in check. Ficus lyrata also love direct sunlight.
Hoyas, Peperomia, Senecio and Dracaena also love bright indirect light--but keep these indoor plants away from the direct rays of the sun to prevent scorching the foliage.
Featured Indoor Plant for High Light Bathrooms: Fiddle Leaf Fig
These large-leaved, tall floor plants are made for bathroom life (if you have the space). They thrive in humidity, light and warmth, and make it easy to bring a bit of the tropics into your brightly lit bathroom.
These plants will get large--and quickly--so consider starting with a smaller plant. Fiddle Leaf Figs require lots of water in brightly lit conditions, and they also love to be fertilized during the growing season.
Ficus lyrata may be the only indoor plant you add to your bathroom as a stand-alone plant, mainly because its structure is dominating and fierce, allowing it stand as a single sculpture.
There are many species of indoor plants you can keep in your bathroom to add nature's softness and calm to a room where many of us spend our first minutes of the day.