You may find it hard to believe, but keeping plants in your bedroom is a decor decision that actually benefits your health. Aside from being pleasant to look at, those luscious green leaves naturally suck up air pollutants and carbon dioxide, then helpfully release oxygen into the space around them – even when there’s no light at night.
In daylight hours, caring for plants has a wealth of benefits, too: just a few moments spent watering and pruning can relieve stress and tension, boost creativity and productivity, and elevate your own nurturing instincts.
So what greenery should you choose to decorate your bedroom? There are myriad options, but it’s important to first consider the space you have, then choose your houseplants accordingly. After all, you’re looking for a leafy relationship that will last a while. To help you with your bedroom plant arrangements, we’ve put together some of the best bedroom plants around, plus a handy guide to finding the right plants for your space.
READ NEXT: The best plant pots to decorate your home
Best bedroom plants: At a glance
- Best trailing plant: Golden pothos | Buy now
- Best plant for low light: Spider plant | Buy now
- Best hard to kill plant: Snake plant | Buy now
- Best plant for full sun: Croton | Buy now
- Best plant for small spaces: Cactus | Buy now
How to choose the best bedroom plants for you
How much natural light does my bedroom get?
Your choice of bedroom plants depends quite significantly on the type of light they’ll receive. South-facing rooms get the bulk of the morning’s direct sun, while north-facing windows have a shadier time until the afternoon and evening rolls around.
East- or west-facing is generally the best for houseplants as they’ll receive lots of indirect light but won’t get scorched. If your bedroom gets barely any natural light, fear not: you can do some clever positioning work with mirrors to harness the sun’s reflection, or plug in a few LED grow lights to keep your plants happy.
The distance from the window to the plant is important, too. Some houseplants much prefer indirect light, meaning they’ll be happiest a good few metres from the light source instead of right up against the glass.
What are the conditions like in my bedroom?
Once you’ve worked out the amount of light your bedroom gets, it’s a good idea to consider other plant-affecting conditions.
Temperature: Most houseplants don’t like big shifts in temperature, so when the seasons change it’s worth readjusting their usual positions in the room. The summer sun they’re getting might be more intense and can scorch the leaves, a cranked-up radiator can buffet them with too much heat, and a cold window pane can freeze them out.
Space: Large bedrooms with plenty of floor and shelf space will suit big, leafy plants that grow quickly, but if your room is lacking surface area you can still find the perfect green companion. Slow-growing plants such as cacti and snake plants are low maintenance and won’t sprout new leaves on a regular basis, so you don’t have to worry about them outgrowing their space.
Height: With space at a minimum, you can think outside the box with houseplant locations, too. High spots such as bookshelves and tops of wardrobes are great for trailing plants such as pothos and spiders, which are happy with some shade.
Water: It’s an easy thing to overlook, but ensuring your plants have an easily accessible water source is a key part of their care. Are you carrying each plant back and forth from the bathroom when they need watering, or can you pour a little water into their pots in situ? If it’s the latter, keep a small watering can somewhere in the room and remember to use dishes beneath each pot to catch any runoff.
READ NEXT: Our pick of the best indoor plants
The best bedroom plants to buy
1. Bloombox Golden Pothos: Best trailing plant
Price: £13 | Buy now from Bloombox
The pothos plant, also known as Devil’s Ivy, is a perfect low-maintenance plant for your bedroom. It has lovely big leaves that get really shiny when they’re healthy and happy, and the vines will spill out towards the nearest light source. Location-wise, it’s really versatile: let it trail down from a high shelf, bookcase or from the top of your wardrobe for the perfect cascading effect.
While pothos plants are happy in most types of light, they generally prefer a bright spot; just steer clear of direct sun, as the leaves can scorch. They like their soil to be moist, so an easy rule of thumb is to give them some water whenever the top layer of soil is dry. For the entrepreneurial plant owner, pothos are really easy to propagate: snip a leaf stem just below a bumpy node, place it in water and wait for roots to form. Unfortunately, pothos plants aren’t pet-friendly, so keep this plant out of harm’s way.
Bloombox has lots of pothos varieties available, including the variegated Satin Pothos and Marble Queen Pothos. It also has a price match guarantee so you can rest assured you’re getting the best pothos for your cash.
Key features – Pot size: 12cm diameter; Overall plant height: 5-10cm; Water: Water when soil is dry; Light: Bright and indirect; Pet-friendly: No
Buy now from Bloombox
2. RHS “Chlorophytum Variegatum” spider plant: Best plant for low light
Price: £26 | Buy now from RHS
Spider plants are really popular thanks to their adaptability to most light conditions. They thrive in bright, indirect light but are perfectly happy in shadier corners, too. It’s easy to tell when you’ve found their optimum conditions, as tiny babies will begin sprouting from the inner leaves on long stalks. Similarly, they’ll let you know if their conditions aren’t great: the leaves will pale and fade if there’s too much sun, and dry and crisp up with too little water. Spider plants grow quickly and they’re really effective at removing carbon dioxide from the air, but remember to water regularly as they don’t particularly like dry soil.
RHS has a fair few varieties and sizes of spider plants – including the ribbon-leaved “Bonnie” and the stout-leaved “Ocean” spiders – but we really like the additional pot and macrame holder that comes with this Variegatum. Hang this on the wall and make your spider plant into an attractive feature of your bedroom!
Key features – Height: 20cm approx (including pot); Water: Keep soil moist but not wet; Light: Bright and indirect; Pet-friendly: Yes
3. Crocus “Sansevieria Trifasciata Laurentii” snake plant: Best hard-to-kill plant
Price: £15 | Buy now from Crocus
With its stiff, greeny-yellow leaves and disinterest in attention, the snake plant is perhaps the most indestructible houseplant around. A snake plant’s leaves won’t droop or spread and it’s extremely slow growing, making it an excellent choice for tight spaces in your bedroom. Also known as “mother-in-law’s tongue”, snake plants continue to produce oxygen at night and filter lots of nasties from the air around them, too.
Although snake plants ultimately prefer a bright room with indirect light, they’ll be perfectly fine in a shaded corner – it just means a slower speed of growth. The easiest way to kill a snake plant is actually by overwatering, so ensure that the soil is bone dry before giving it a minimal drink – every fortnight at a minimum, but maybe only once a month. Basically ignoring these bad boys will reward you in the long run. Crocus has plenty of snake plant varieties available; we also love the cicylindrica and mikado variants.
Key features – Pot size: 14cm diameter; Height: 45cm approx; Water: Only water when soil is bone dry; Light: Bright and indirect; Pet-friendly: No
Buy now from Crocus
4. Crocus Codiaeum “Mammi” Croton: Best plant for bright sun
Price: £20 | Buy now from Crocus
If you’re lucky enough to have a south-facing bedroom – with plenty of light flooding in each morning – you’re in prime position for a croton on your windowsill. Also known as codiaeum, these babies positively lap up sunshine: give them six to eight hours of sun and their wide green-yellow leaves will reach deep, rich shades of red, orange and gold.
Crotons also suck up water super-fast in the hotter months, so keep an eye on dried-out soil and wilting leaves, which suggest you might want to consider upping the watering schedule. Too much sun exposure can also result in scorched brown spots or excessively dark leaves, which is a good indicator to move it further back – although be careful not to jolt them with too big a move (straight from bright sun to a shady corner) as crotons need a little acclimatising first.
Key features – Height: 40cm approx; Water: Keep soil moist but not wet; Light: Bright and indirect; Pet-friendly: No
Buy now from Crocus
5. You Garden Indoor Cactus Mix: Best plant for small spaces
Price: £15 for six | Buy now from You Garden
If you’re somewhat limited on surface space in your bedroom, it’s best to opt for a slow-growing plant. Enter the humble cactus. This low-maintenance houseplant comes in a huge range of sizes, shapes and colours but won’t unfurl large leaves or stems outward or upward.
Bright direct sunlight will maximise a cactus’s growth, but they’re also able to cope with shadier spaces. They require very little water, perhaps every fortnight or so. Cacti are also rather special in houseplant circles: they release oxygen at night instead of during the day, making indoor air that much cleaner and fresher.
We love this collection of six mixed cacti from You Garden, and we found they look better when grouped together. These little guys are perfect to nudge onto a spare spot on a shelf, bookcase or bedside table – just remember to watch out for those spikes in the night!
Key features – Height: 5.5cm pots; Water: When soil is dry; Light: Bright and direct to shady; Pet-friendly: No
Buy now from You Garden