There’s nothing that spruces up the office space quite like a nice green plant. They are good for your mood and can increase productivity, and they can help purify the air in the office from toxins. Most of all, they can just be a lot of fun to look at. If you want to bring some green into your office space, read on to find out which plants are best for this.
Here are the best indoor plants for office spaces so you can start collecting your own today. Office plants, like team-building games or morale-building strategies, are a good way to boost morale in the office. They can help boost productivity and studies have even shown they can help companies retain their employees.
Best Indoor Plants for Office Spaces
Indoor plants in the office can help keep the environment alive and the energy flowing free and peacefully in the space. They can create a restorative effect on workers in that space, simply by looking at the green plants. And these are just some of the great benefits of having plants in the office.
The reality, however, is that many plants simply do not thrive in the office environment. They could be too high maintenance, not do well under typical office lighting, or without the perfect water regime. This is why it’s important to learn which plants do well in the office before you bring any in.
Now that you know why plants make a good addition to the office, let’s look at some specific plants you may want to use.
1. Snake plant (Sansevieria)
A popular plant on many lists is the snake plant, also known as Mother-in-Law’s Tongue, this is a hardy, unique-looking plant that is very easy to care for. It is at the top of the list when it comes to plants that help purify the air in a space and it can even thrive in low-light conditions. There’s no surprise then, that it also makes our list of great plants for office spaces. Snake plants are really easy to take care of and they are forgiving if you forget to water them for a while.
2. English ivy (Hedera helix)
A trailing green vine plant like English ivy looks great on a desk or even hanging from a basket in the office. This ivy needs medium-light to thrive and average watering. It’s fairly forgiving if you forget to water, and it gets a bit dry. It will bounce back if you notice and water in time. You can even run English Ivy up a trellis or the wall for a unique, earthy, green feel in the office.
3. African violet (Saintpaulia)
The African violet is a fuzzy leafed plant with purple-violet flowers that was made especially popular in the 1970s. Today, this plant is still a fan favorite because it thrives in warm, average temperatures and humidity. Basically, the same environment that is friendly to humans is friendly to the African violet. They do well in different types of light, including fluorescents, which is another reason they are on the list of best plants for your office. They look pretty and they’re easy enough to care for.
4. Cacti (Cactaceae)
There are so many different types of cacti to choose from but one thing they all have in common is that they are great for office spaces. They require little maintenance and are very easy to care for. In fact, if you’re new to indoor plants, you can’t really go wrong with a cactus. They do best in natural light but only need watering about once a week in the spring and summer months and less than that in the fall and winter. You can get away with watering only about every three weeks in those months. Cacti come in a lot of different shapes and sizes so they can be a lot of fun in the office, too.
5. Chinese evergreen (Aglaonema)
Next up we have the Chinese evergreen. These plants do super well in the dark and they grow big, full, and bushy when healthy. They look beautiful in pots and they prefer warm, humid conditions but can also tolerate dry air or lack of watering. We just suggest you don’t place it right in front of an AC vent. Overwatering will lead to root rot so when in down, water less and see how the leaves respond to help you judge when it’s thirsty.
6. Corn plant (Dracaena fragrans)
The corn plant is another great choice for the office. They are perfect for the person who forgets to tend to their office plant, as they are low maintenance and hardy. The corn plan can stand up well to the occasional neglect, but it does like a filtered light or semi-shade and to have the leaves misted. It’s pretty easy to care for and brings a tropical feel to your office.
7. Pothos (Epipremnum aureum)
Pothos is a green vine plant, but there are several different types. There’s the golden pothos, marble queen pothos, neon pothos, Jessenia pothos, and more. Each has a different color to the leaves, but they have basically the same shape. Sometimes mistaken for a philodendron, the pothos is super easy to care for. This is my favorite plant to recommend to anyone new to indoor plants. They are very forgiving when it comes to water and light. From the darkest cubicle to the brightest office window, pothos is a good office plant choice.
8. ZZ plant (Zamioculcas zamiifolia)
The ZZ plant prefers good lighting but they will also make do in low-light environments. When given a choice, always opt for a location with more light, but if you cannot manage that in your office, the ZZ plant could still be a solid choice. They don’t need very much water and they are very low maintenance. They’re hardy, which means it takes a lot to kill them and they look super cute. These are all great reasons to add them to our office plant list.
9. Jade plant (Crassula ovata)
Jade plants are very unique, pretty plants with rubber-like leaves. They look a bit like mini trees when they grow and they only need medium-light for part of the day, which means they can work well in an office setting, too. The soil should always dry out before you water again, so you don’t need to water too frequently. They just look really great sitting on a desktop, too.
10. Spider plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
Spider plants are a popular choice for people new to houseplants, and also for anyone who wants plants to help purify the air. They are fantastic at removing toxins from the air, but they also look super cool in a pot on your desk, or in a hanging basket near the window or the water cooler. Spider plants prefer indirect light, so they do well, even in low-light office situations.
11. Aloe vera (Aloe barbadensis miller)
Many people know aloe as a plant that has medicinal properties but it’s also a very cute little succulent that requires little care. Sometimes the best way to care for an aloe vera plant is to forget about it. They only need water once every one to two weeks and they do well in different lighting conditions. This is a plant that even non-plant people can identify and they are fun to tend to.
12. Nerve plant (Fittonia)
Nerve plant is the last one on our list today, but it’s certainly not the least. This unique little plant is usually only about three to six inches high and about 18 inches long at its biggest size. But it packs a lot into a small package because it has beautiful coloring and a nice, unique pattern on the leaves. They are tolerant of low light and the soil should always dry out in between watering, making them perfect plants for the office.
Taking Care of Your Indoor Plants for Offices
If you’re going to choose some or all of the plants above on this list for your office space, it’s important to know how to care for them properly. Here are some important things to keep in mind:
- Know how to identify what type of plant it is – this is essential to know how to care for it
- Know how much to water – a most common killer of desk plants is overwatering
- Know how much light it needs – essential to keeping it healthy is to know how much light it needs and for how long
- Know when to fertilize – in general, you can fertilize desk plants every other month in spring and summer
- Keep your plants away from air conditioners, heating elements or vents, and drafty windows in the office
- If you’re going to be away for a long time, ask a co-worker to help tend to your plants – give them instructions on how to do so properly
Conclusion of Best Indoor Plants for Office Spaces
Now you have this great list of the twelve best indoor plants for office spaces and you can begin shopping for yourself. Or maybe you already keep plants at home, and you just want to transplant some of them from there to your office. There’s really no reason to delay.
When you take time to care for your office plants, you’re also taking time to care for yourself. This can improve mood, help battle depression and anxiety, and help you to learn more about yourself. There are so many reasons to get an office plant (or two, or more) and so few reasons not to.
What will your first office plant be?
Lisa Clark is a freelance writer who grew up on farmland, then moved to the city, and has now retired back to her rural roots. She's having fun teaching her kids about gardening, planting flowers, and collecting houseplants.