11 low-light plants to brighten up the dark areas of your home

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Bring some life into your home with these easy-care, low-light houseplants that’ll brighten up any room.

It’s no secret that adding plants to your home is one of the simplest ways to spruce up your interiors, but creating an environment that’s plant-friendly isn’t always easy – especially when you live in a home that doesn’t get much natural light.

At the end of the day, light is one of the key things plants need to survive – so if your home is lacking on windows or has lots of dark corners, you might be worried about how you’d keep a plant happy and healthy.

However, just because your home isn’t dominated by natural light, doesn’t mean you can’t start your own plant collection.

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We’re not talking about artificial plants, either (although they’re a great option if you don’t have the time to look after a plant) – despite what you might assume, there are actually plenty of houseplants that can survive in the shadier areas of your home. In fact, some even thrive in low light conditions.

Of course, low light doesn’t mean no light at all, and trying to get a plant to grow in a windowless cupboard isn’t going to go down well. But if you’re looking for a straightforward way to brighten up a dark corner, keep reading to check out our pick of the best low-light plants to buy now.  

  • Calathea triostar

    Best low light plants: Calathea Triostar.

    While calatheas love bright, indirect light, they’ll also tolerate lower light conditions, too. There are plenty of types of calathea – take a look for yourself – but we love this multi-colour ‘triostar’ variation.

    Just make sure to keep an eye on the humidity levels surrounding your calathea – yellow leaves and burnt tips are signs that your plant isn’t happy.

    Shop Calathea Triostar at Leaf Envy, £19

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  • Corn plant

    Best low light plants: Corn Plant.

    Bring a touch of the tropical into your home with the help of the humble corn plant. Also known as the dragon tree, this variety from Patch boasts variegated leaves which are perfect for adding a splash of colour to any space.

    Corn plants are happy in most conditions from light shade to bright, soft light and don’t require watering very often, so they’re pretty easy to take care of. To keep yours happy, give its leaves a mist every few days, or put it in your bathroom where it can enjoy the humidity.  

    Shop Corn Plant at Patch Plants, £85

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  • ZZ plant

    Best low light plants: ZZ plant.

    Most low-light plants tend to be pretty easy to care for, but the ZZ plant takes the cake. They not only need very little light to flourish, but they’re also pretty drought resistant and prefer to be a bit pot bound, so you won’t need to repot your new plant for some time after you buy it.

    And just because it’s easy to care for, doesn’t mean you have to deal with an average-looking plant. With its vibrant, glossy leaves, tightly-packed foliage and unique towering stems, the ZZ plant is a great all-rounder.

    Shop ZZ Plant at Leaf Envy, £24

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  • Golden pothos

    Best low light plants: Golden Pothos.

    If you’re looking for a trailing plant to adorn the dark corners of your bedroom, the golden pothos is the plant for you.

    Also known as the devil’s ivy (it was nicknamed as such because it stays green even in the dark), the golden pothos is incredibly easy to care for – you’ll just need to give yours a water once its soil dries out. It’s beautiful, dappled yellow leaves are sure to brighten up any space.

    Shop Golden Pothos at The Little Botanical, £20.50

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  • Cast iron plant

    Best low light plants: Cast Iron Plant.

    As the name suggests, the cast iron plant is known for its hardy nature – making it the perfect plant for those dreaded spots where nothing seems to survive.

    Besides the fact that it doesn’t need much attention – it can be kept on the dry side, and tends to grow pretty slowly – its striking architectural shape and dark green colour make it an eye-catching addition to any space in need of a finishing touch. 

    Shop Cast Iron Plant at Beards & Daisies, £25

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  • Heart-leaf philodendron

    Best low light plants: Heart-Leaf Philodendron.

    The perfect hanging plant for a dark corner or shelving unit, the heart-leaf philodendron has dark green, glossy leaves whose heart shape give the plant its name. Although this plant from Conservatory Archives is displayed in a hanging pot, you can also train a heart-leaf philodendron to climb a moss pole – whatever works best for you.

    To keep your heart-leaf philodendron happy, you’ll want to make sure its soil stays moist with regular watering in spring and summer. You can also give its leaves a mist and dust them occasionally to ensure they’re able to soak up any light that does head their way.

    Shop Heart-Leaf Philodendron at Conservatory Archives, £20

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  • Snake plant

    Best low light plants: Snake Plant.

    The snake plant’s striking architectural leaves are just one of the reasons why this humble plant is such a popular choice among first-time plant owners.

    On top of being able to survive in almost all light conditions, the snake plant just so happens to be one of the hardiest plants on this list. In short, if you’re a complete beginner looking for a plant that’s basically impossible to kill, add this one to your basket. 

    Shop Snake Plant at Leafy, £8.99

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  • Parlour palm

    Best low light plants: Parlour Palm.

    A favourite houseplant of the Victorians, the elegant parlour palm makes an eye-catching addition to any room of the home.

    Besides being able to withstand any shady spots (it’ll enjoy any light conditions, except from direct, bright light), the parlour palm is also very easy-going – in fact, you’ll usually find it referred to as an ‘unkillable’ plant by most plant retailers.

    Simply give it a water when the top inch of its soil feels dry and it’ll give you lots of love in return.

    Shop Parlour Palm at Patch Plants, £16 

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  • Peace lily

    Best low light plants: Peace Lily.

    You might think that a peace lily requires lots of care and attention due to its flowering nature, but that’s actually not the case. In fact, this popular plant tends to do quite well in shadier spots – it prefers indirect light to the kind of bright sunlight you get near a window.

    To keep your peace lily happy and healthy, make sure to water it on a regular basis (allowing the soil to dry out between waterings) and keep the air around the plant humid. You can do this by misting the plant’s leaves regularly, or simply popping it in a bathroom.

    Shop Peace Lily at foli8, £16

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  • Leopard lily

    Best low light plants: Leopard Lily.

    If you’re a sucker for a plant with pretty leaves, then you’ll love the standout markings on the aptly-named leopard lily. Commonly called the dumb cane, this tropical plant enjoys lots of humidity and indirect light, making it another ideal addition to your bathroom.

    To help your leopard lily thrive, you’ll want to give it a water when the top layer of its soil is dry, and make sure to keep its big leaves clear of any dust (just give them a wipe down with a damp cloth every once in a while).

    Shop Leopard Lily at The Stem, £8

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  • Mini monstera

    Best low light plants: Mini Monstera.

    Like its larger counterpart, the mini monstera originates from the tropical forests of Africa and Asia, where it climbs trees and branches to access the limited light which pierces through the dense foliage. As such, it’s perfectly happy in spots with indirect light.

    While, as this plant from Leaf Envy demonstrates, the mini monstera is happy climbing upwards from a pot on a surface, it also makes a brilliant hanging plant – just make sure to water and mist it regularly to mimic the tropical environment it loves.

    Shop Mini Monstera at Leaf Envy, £18

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