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Best Houseplants for Shady Areas
Indoor plants are a great way to bring life and freshness into any space, but finding the right plants for your home's shadier spots can be a challenge. While all plants need light to survive, there are some plants that are more shade tolerant than others. In this article, we'll explore 15 shade tolerant house plants that can survive in low-light conditions.
Plants Need Light to Survive
Before we dive into our list of shade tolerant house plants, it's important to understand that all plants need light to survive. Light is the energy source that plants use to photosynthesize and create food for themselves. Without enough light, plants will struggle to grow and thrive.
There are many shade tolerant plants to choose from but most of them actually prefer bright but indirect light. However, with some gentle care they can survive in a shadier spot. But note that a surviving plant is simply one that is able to stay alive, but may not be growing or developing optimally. A thriving plant, on the other hand, is not only surviving but is also flourishing, producing healthy growth, blooming, and showing signs of vitality.
If plants are placed in areas with lower light than what they prefer, they will be at a higher risk of overwatering and developing root rot.
No Plant Will Survive in the Long Run in a Dark Room
It's also important to note that no plant will survive in the long run in a completely dark room. While some plants may be able to tolerate lower levels of light, they still need some light to survive. If you have a room with no natural light, you'll need to provide artificial light sources to keep your plants healthy.
Examples of How You Can Have Plants in Too Dark Areas
If you have a room with low light conditions, there are a few ways you can still enjoy the benefits of indoor plants. One option is to use grow lights. These are special lights that mimic natural sunlight and can help your plants grow even in low light conditions.
You can also try shifting two plants between two spots every week, one spot in bright indirect light and one in the shade. This will give your plants a chance to get some light exposure while also keeping them in a shadier spot. But it might also cause some stress to your plant and will only work for shade tolerant plants.
Another option is to use cut flowers. Both fresh and dried cut flowers can be a great option for adding a pop of color to a dark room. Fresh cut flowers will be more vibrant but while they won't last as long as live plants, they can still bring some life to your space. Dried cut flowers will, however, last for a very long time. Just remember to dust them every now and then.
Finally, use fake plants. While not as satisfying as real plants, fake plants can still add a touch of green to your space without requiring any light.
15 Shade Tolerant House Plants
Now that we've covered the basics, let's take a look at 15 shade tolerant house plants that can do pretty well in low-light conditions:
Snake Plant (Dracaena, formerly known as Sansevieria)
ZZ Plant (Zamioculcas zamiifolia)
Pothos (Epipremnum aureum)
Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema)
Cast Iron Plant (Aspidistra elatior)
Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)
Bird's Nest Fern (Asplenium nidus)
Corn Plant (Dracaena)
Satin Pothos (Scindapsus pictus)
Golden Pothos (Epipremnum aureum)
Heartleaf Philodendron (Philodendron hederaceum)
Red Prayer Plant (Maranta leuconeura)
And last, but not least, many species within Philodendron, Anthurium and Monstera are all known for their ability to survive in low light conditions, making them great options for shadier spots in your home.
Symptoms of Lacking light
It's important to be able to recognize when your plant is suffering from inadequate light so that you can take steps to save it. The symptoms of inadequate light in plants can vary depending on the plant species and the severity of the light deficiency. Some common symptoms to look out for include:
Stunted growth: If your plant isn't getting enough light, it may struggle to grow and may even stop growing altogether.
Leaf discoloration: If your plant is not getting enough light, its leaves may turn yellow or brown.
Leaf drop: If your plant is not getting enough light, it may start to drop its leaves. This is the plant's way of conserving energy and focusing on its more vital parts.
Weak stems: Plants that are not getting enough light may have weak and spindly stems. This is because the plant is stretching towards the available light source in an attempt to photosynthesize. - Called etiolation.
Soil never dries out: Soil may appear to dry out slower when a plant lacks enough light and is not absorbing water properly because the plant is not using as much water as it normally would. This can result in root rot and mold.
Poor flowering: Plants that require a lot of light to produce flowers may fail to flower if they are not getting enough light.
How to Save a Plant with Inadequate Light
If you've identified that your plant is suffering from inadequate light, there are a few steps you can take to save it.
Move the plant to a brighter spot: If your plant is in a spot with low light, try moving it to a brighter spot that receives more direct sunlight. Make sure to avoid placing it in direct sunlight if it's a plant that prefers indirect light.
Use artificial light: If you can't move your plant to a brighter spot, consider using artificial light. Grow lights are a great option for providing the necessary light spectrum for plants to grow.
Choose shade-tolerant plants: If you have a room with low light conditions, consider choosing plants that are known to be shade tolerant, such as snake plants or pothos.
In conclusion, inadequate light can have serious consequences for your plants. If you notice any symptoms of light deficiency in your plant, take action to save it by providing it with more light. With proper care, your plant can recover and thrive in a bright and healthy environment.