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August 20, 2022  |  Office

Low-light plants to welcome spring to your home office

When your home office doesn't get much light, you should take any opportunity to spruce it up. Luckily, there are plenty of low-light plants that survive and even thrive in shadowy corners and poorly lit rooms. This means you can welcome spring to your home office even if you don't have a bright window sill to grow plants on or your desk is tucked away in a dark recess.  

Low-light plants for dark home offices

Since the start of the pandemic, increasing numbers of people have been working from home full- or part-time. This has left people scrambling to find office space in their homes. If you have a dedicated room for your home office, it's probably the small bedroom with little natural light that nobody wanted to claim. However, many people have set up home offices in the corners of bedrooms or living rooms, which might be far from a window and not get much light. 

Whatever the reason your office area doesn't get much light, you can brighten it up with plants. Low-light plants do well without much natural light, so it's possible to add greenery to your desk or place some indoor plant stands without worrying your new plants will wither and die. Any of these plants are good for poor light conditions. 

Snake plant

An excellent choice for anyone new to keeping houseplants, the snake plant requires little care. It doesn't require much water (though it's easier to overwater it than underwater it) and is tolerant of a range of conditions. It does best in partial shade, so areas that get some natural light throughout the day are ideal. However, it's also tolerant of full shade, which is good news for people with cave-like home offices.

Lucky bamboo

Not only is this resilient plant a perfect choice for dark rooms, it's also said to bring luck and prosperity. Pop it on your desk to get some much-needed good luck through your working day. Lucky bamboo plants thrive in partial shade but can survive nicely in full shade as well. You can grow them in soil or water and you can even buy plants that are braided or bent into various shapes.

Maidenhair fern

While some ferns like bright conditions, maidenhair ferns thrive with little light, either in full or partial shade. They have small, delicate leaf segments that make them look notably different from other ferns. They're hardy ferns that don't require overly moist conditions, but they still like some humidity if they can get it. Although they aren't the easiest plants to care for, people with some indoor gardening experience won't find them too tricky to keep in good condition.

Peace lily

A perfect choice for low-light conditions, peace lilies' foliage yellows and wilts with too much light. When placed in full or partial shade, they thrive with little care beyond occasional watering. Droopy foliage lets you know when these plants are in need of a drink and they soon perk up once they've been watered, so they're easy to look after, even for those without a green thumb.

Chinese evergreen

With short, glossy leaves available in a range of color variations, Chinese evergreen — or Aglaonema — is an attractive choice to liven up your home office. Its leaves can scorch in direct sunlight, so a shady spot is ideal, though bright, indirect light will help variegated varieties show off their best colors. It needs a fair amount of water, especially in hot, dry weather, but it's relatively simple to care for.

Calathea rattlesnake

With gorgeous two-tone leaves, rattlesnake plants make a striking addition to any home. The markings on its leaves fade in direct sunlight, so shady spots or indirect light are ideal for them. These plants can be tricky to care for, so they aren't for the faint-hearted (or new plant parents), but they reward dedicated owners with gorgeous displays of foliage, so they're worth putting in the time to care for. 

Devil's ivy

Devil's ivy, also known as golden pothos, is known for being exceptionally hardy. It thrives where other plants wouldn't, including in spots with practically no natural light. It can go for weeks without water, so it's a perfect choice for anyone who tends to forget about their plants. It naturally trails down the side of its pot, so it's a nice choice of plant for the edge of a desk or top of a bookshelf.

Spider plant

Another excellent choice for people who have bad track records looking after plants, spider plants are hardy and tolerant of little-to-no natural light. While they require semi-regular watering to really thrive, they'll survive some neglect, though their delicate leaves are prone to getting crispy at the edges. Healthy plants throw out spider-like babies and can trail in this way.

Best low-light plants Snake Plant

This snake plant comes in large and medium sizes, with the large size big enough to hold its own on the floor and the medium size perfect for a desk. There's a choice of two planter styles: sandstone or two-tone.

Where to buy: Sold by Calming Peace Lily Plant

This large, lush peace lily is available in two sizes, measuring roughly 20 inches or 30 inches. With a stylish two-tone planter included, there's no need to buy one separately. 

Where to buy: Sold by

Costa Farms Aglaonema Chinese Evergreen

With its pink-edged foliage, this is a gorgeous example of a Chinese evergreen. It measures around 14 inches tall, including the pot, so it isn't overwhelmingly large. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Costa Farms Easy Care Devil's Ivy

Choose from 4, 6, 8 or 10-inch devil's ivy plants. You have a choice of planters, including mid-century and two-tone styles, or you can buy it in a grower's pot and use your own. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Lauren Corona writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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