Ideal Indoor Plants for Apartments, and Indoor Trees. too!

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Ideal Indoor Plants for Apartments, and Indoor Trees, too!

An apartment may not be as big and spacious as you want it to be, but it doesn’t mean it couldn’t be made efficient and livable to be your home and “sanctuary.” Small yet efficient apartments have been a popular choice among many people. And the exciting thing is that you can have the ideal indoor plants and trees for the apartment, those that generate good vibes and more oxygen. Isn’t that great?

An apartment could also be huge and elegant, like the ones for the rich and famous. Here, we’re tackling the small, compact, affordable units. Having settled that, let’s go through some of the convincing reasons that drive people to choose to live in an apartment: Let’s look at ideal indoor plants for apartments.

indoors plants
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Why living in an apartment may be a better option for some people

  • When all the kids have grown up, married, and have their own houses, the parents now live in an “empty nest.” It may now be too big for just the two of them and would decide to move into an apartment.
  • For young adults who want to make it on their own and settle in another State or neighborhood, choosing an apartment would be a logical choice. Having their own place and yet not blowing their income on sky-rocketing rentals or real-estate purchases would be a logical choice.
  • An apartment could be a second real-estate investment or a “home” for some people. It’s a hedge against unforeseen financial loss. It may be less difficult to sell an apartment than a bigger house.
  • For someone living alone, he would feel secure, safe, and cozy in a smaller house like an apartment than living in a big house.

These are just 4, but you may have thought up your own reason for wanting an apartment after reading the above. Regardless of your decision, know that living in a smaller yet efficient flat could be wonderful when you include your favorite potted plants and trees. Then have a grand time putting your personal stamp on your new abode and witnessing your favorite indoor potted plants and trees grow and flower, and maybe even bear fruits.


green leafed plant
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How to make a small apartment “feel and be” more spacious

In the living area

Besides opting for more comfortable yet not bulky, but rather comfortable chairs, seats, and divans your living area can also double up as a multi-function room: a multi-media center and a home office. A zoom meeting can be done right in your multi-purpose cum living area with a wall-mounted big TV monitor, with access to the Internet and cable TV. In other words, it becomes more functional.

In the dining area

The dining area can also be another double-purpose room or area of an apartment. You have meals at most 4 or 5 times daily. And those hours in between could be used for other activities wherein a dining table can be used as a work table, right? For the bedroom, a meditation alcove could be created inside. It can also be a study area for a student.

Let rooms flow into one other with pocket doors

Also, instead of using conventional doors for privacy, replace them with either a sliding door or a pocket door. The pocket door slides into a pocket or a groove within a wall. So, when it’s opened, it’s hiding inside a niche, making the bedroom look like it flows into the main living space. A conventional door left open doesn’t look as good as the pocket and sliding doors when opened.

So, there you go. Some simple doable alternatives to making the most out of limited or small space. Of course, don’t forget to put in one or two potted plants or a potted tree. Remember that indoor plants and trees give off oxygen.

And let’s examine our relationship with plants as we consider the ideal indoor plants for apartments.

The affinity between humans and plants

Our relationship and affinity/affection for /with plants and trees have been around for so long that at times we forget how important they are. Plants generally provide us with healthy foods like vegetables, root crops, and other delicious and healthy natural foods. Some medicines are also sourced from them. Trees provide us with basic building materials such as wood beams, posts, rafters, and planks. We have fruits and nuts from some types of trees.

They’re also used to make pieces of furniture like chairs, tables, desks, and cabinets. Plants and trees also make up our gardens and landscape and make our yard look great, for public parks and gardens.  They also provide shades for us to rest on sunny days. Plants and trees also provide us with ingredients and components for medicines.


Know that some plants and trees might pose dangers indoors

Though some species of plants and small trees can be brought inside your house, they may have quite poisonous leaves, attract pesky insects, require special attention, or they are difficult to maintain. Not good when you have kids around. So, here are the list of some of the best houseplants for apartments that would be easy to take care of.

  • Have a certified list of poisonous plants and trees:

Identifying the right tree may even be grueling because some plants and trees have parts that are poisonous. So, better check with the seller what trees are totally safe and those that are poisonous and get only the former ones. Also, counter-check that information against reliable sources on the web. And take extra precautions and inquire online with the concerned government agencies.

  • Prohibit kids from touching and taking any part of the tree:

And then putting that finger or hand in their mouth. Sounds like a paranoid Mom or Dad, or an elder sibling. But no one would blame anyone for being too careful if it would protect a youngster from danger.


Five reasons to have indoor plants and trees in your apartment

1 Indoor plants and trees can relieve anxiety

In a study by the National Library of Medicine in 2015, it was observed that an individual’s mental and biological stresses are decreased or prevented when enjoying and interacting with indoor plants and trees. The happy hormones dopamine and serotonin are released in the body whenever you engage in something that makes you happy, like taking in the beauty of a houseplant in your apartment. And a well-chosen plant and tree can make an interior much more pleasant and beautiful, complementing the furniture, and creating a nice contrast between natural and man-made objects. Especially in a flat where the area is small, minimalist furnishing with less clutter and fewer small objects scattered around would make a more relaxing, uncluttered space.

Recommended plant to beat anxiety:

Aloe Vera, Basil, Chamomile, Jasmine, Lavender, Lemon Balm  


2 Trees and plants indoors contribute to enhancing indoor air quality

Potted plants and trees placed inside an apartment make beneficial changes in the surroundings, such as giving off oxygen and moisture into the air. It results in creating a higher level of comfort and healthfulness for the residents, visitors, and pets. Furthermore, some level of pollution could take place in the interior of a flat. So, a technology to sanitize the polluted atmosphere, surfaces, soil in the pots, and water be carried out with the help of indoor plants. Called “phytoremediation,” where “phyto”  means plants, it harnesses plants and allied/good micro-organisms to purify/counteract atmospheric, soil, and water pollution.

Indoor air quality may also be compromised by dust. It accumulates continuously over time and may go unnoticed. In a scientific investigation conducted by V.I, Lohr and C.H. Pearson-Mims in 1996, the positive contribution of indoor plants, and potted trees, have been proven. So, plants in pots placed along the walls reduce dust buildup by around 20% all throughout, including the center of the room where no potted plant is stationed. In the experiment itself, the potted plants were watered or irrigated from below, so the soil in the pot was completely dry and could have somehow contributed to the dust buildup, but it did not.

Recommended plant to improve air quality:

English Ivy, Lady Palm Plant, Peace Lily, Red-Edged Dracaena, English Ivy


3 Inspires resilience, survival, and growth OKAY

Human beings have a built-in connection with plants and trees, and that’s why we love to have them in our homes and to admire and take care of them. That includes being inspired by them, happy about having them, and feeling good and uplifted by just admiring them. And positive feelings promote good health. Good health adds to your resilience and stronger survival instinct. And all those good things encourage growth, not only biologically, but spiritually and emotionally.

 Recommended plant to promote resilience and growth:

Cherry Tree, Ginko, Mulberry, Snakeplant, White Willow


4 Indoor plants and trees improve your work-at-home experience

Work from home has attracted more workers not only due to the restrictions of the pandemic, but also because of its many advantages that make it a better, more healthful alternative than the traditional work setup. And having indoor plants and trees will surely make it a positive and less stressful home-based work activity.

The advantage is not tangible this time, but about increased well-being, that is, feeling comfortable, happy, and healthy. Another study, by Lohr and Pearson Mims in 2000, showed that people experienced positive, healthful feelings when they were in a room with indoor plants and trees. They were carefree and playful, or affectionate and friendly, regardless of the presence of decorative objects or not.

 Recommended plant for a home-based job:

African Violet, Aloe Vera Bamboo, Palms, Peace Lily, Snake Plant, Rubber Tree,

More ideal indoor plants for apartments…

5 They can increase the residents’ efficiency and productivity

At some point, we all may have experienced mental fatigue, whether as employees or students, professionals, or parents. In research about mental fatigue by Tennessen and Cimprich in 1995, they asked a few students to finish work on different tasks inside their dormitory rooms. The views from their windows were captured in video. Some rooms had windows that open out to a view of trees, grass, and natural landscaping. Other rooms had windows with views of parking lots, sidewalks, and other man-made environments. The students who were found to be more productive and less tired mentally were those living in dorms that offered a view of nature, the grass, and trees.

Views of nature, like trees, the sky, natural landscape, bring about good vibrations and feelings that make us relax and in tune with what we’re doing. They inspire us. Viewing parking lots for instance may not spark anything to inspire us.

Recommended plant/tree for efficiency and productivity:

African Violet, Peace Lily, Philodendron, Spider Plant, Tillandsia


Indoor trees that are great as focal points in an apartment

01 Banana Tree (Euphorbia ingens)

banana tree in living room
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Sculptures are art pieces that come in different shapes, sizes, and an idea to represent/message. So do trees, in a way. The banana tree as an indoor plant probably would remind us about the circle of life, and that life should be protected and celebrated. And its caretaker, the resident of that apartment, gets to do that by giving his time and energy to care for the banana tree. And in return, he enjoys it. So, an indoor banana tree becomes an organic, living sculpture that promotes good feelings in the residents. In return, they take care of it.

The Banana Tree must have a pot tall enough to allow its roots to grow. As it needs sunlight, position it where it could receive sunlight for about 12 hours, which depends on the variety. Its container must provide substantial drainage for it to grow. And let the soil dry completely before its next watering.


02 Money Tree ( Pachira aquatica)

a young money trees for the apartment
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A young money tree “shines” behind a simple white backdrop.

Although the Money Tree can grow up to around 60 feet outdoors, it is believed to bring good luck to the household when grown indoors. They usually have trunks that appear braided, which reminds us of a bonsai tree.  That and its appealing tree silhouette make it a beautiful, sculptural organic artwork indoors.


03 Triangle Ficus (Ficus triangularis)

plants in a rectangular pot
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A pair of young variegated Triangle Ficus on a rectangular pot evokes Zen vibes.

Well, it’s a no-brainer to say that its attractive leaves are triangular. As a potted indoor plant, it grows nicely. Considering that ficus trees are known for their fussiness when it comes to taking care of themselves, this variety is not. So even newbies at plant care would have a pleasant time taking care of it. An indoor ficus tree would look good in an apartment setting. Position the ficus indoor plant where it can bask in bright sunlight, but not direct sunlight, and make sure the soil drains well.


04 Corn Plant (Dracaena fragrans Massangeanna)

attractive tall indoor trees
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Dracaena fragrans Janet Craig, on the left, and the Dracaena Fragrans, right.

The Corn Plant tree above is the most common Massangeana variety distinguished by its leaves with lime green stripes running down the middle. It’s a popular indoor tree because it resembles a palm tree with narrow, long leaves that grow upwards. As with most indoor plants and trees, the soil is ideally a mixture of soil and peat that make it sort of crumbly, which equates to good drainage. Place the potted plant where it gets bright indirect sunlight. Its palm-like appearance makes it a perfect centerpiece/highlight in an apartment setting.


05 European Olive Tree (Olea europea)

ideal indoor trees for the apartment
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A huge Olive Tree in the courtyard can be viewed from the spacious living area in this luxurious apartment.

When an olive tree is grown in a pot for indoors, it won’t grow as tall as they would outdoors. As an indoor tree, it’s not hard to grow and take care of it since it can endure dry soil and low humidity. When the branches grow longer, you may trim them to keep the silhouette slimmer and to encourage new growth. Take it out once in a while in summer.

The Olive Tree enhances good vibes in the apartment and is a good accent or focal point in the living area or any part of your house. It is a nice indoor tree for any kind of interior design or architectural style of the space. And a tall indoor tree will make a small space feel and look more spacious because the eyes view it straight or a little higher, and its height reinforces the vertical lines of the room, adding to that sense of more space.


06 Lady Palm (Rhapis excelsa)

potted plants for indoors
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A young Lady Palm, viewed from above.

The Lady Palm tree has a profusion of fan-like leaves, that is, resembling the fingers of the hand, all the way down to its stems. When in bloom, you’d see short lance-shaped flowers that later grow into white fruits. It lends a tropical feel to an apartment and must be placed where it can get indirect sunlight, and needs regular watering. Young Lady Palm tree can be part of a plant grouping, or displayed on a table.  As an adult tree, it may be placed on the floor as one of the room’s focal points. Ideal for any type of interior ambiance.


07 Yucca (Yucca elephantipes)

potted indoor trees
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A potted young Yucca tree.

The variety of Yucca tree that’s ideal for indoors, like in an apartment, is the Yucca elephantipes with leathery leaves that is shaped somewhat like a sword. The leaves don’t hurt unlike the other variety, Yucca aloifolia though has narrower, and razor-sharp leaves that can hurt. Surelly, it has no place in a home.

The Yucca tree can be a striking focal point in an apartment due to its eye-catching sculptural appearance that goes well with modern or minimalist interiors. But it would still be a great indoor plant in a traditional and period ambiance. It’s how you put together decorative objects in your home. To care for it, put it in a spot where it receives much sunlight, like near a south-facing window. In warmer months of the year, consider watering them weekly. Or check that the soil is dry which means it should be watered

Do you include these ideal indoor plants for apartments in your decorating plans?

Indoor plants that are nice accents in an apartment

Around half a meter tall, or 2 feet is an ideal height for an indoor plant, not too small as to be lost among other objects on a tabletop. Many indoor plant enthusiasts want their plants to be big enough to be noticed and not add to visual clutter. Especially in an apartment where you want the limited space to “look” and “feel” spacious, not cramped. Consider showcasing them as a group, especially when they’re small, as a focal point or a visual anchor. If a standalone plant, it should be about I foot high. Don’t overdo it and place several small potted plants around the living room or other spaces

01 The Happy Bean (Peperomia ferreyrae)

ideal potted indoor plant for an apartment
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The Happy Bean

Endearingly called “the happy bean” and considered by many as their favorite. That’s because it’s easy to take care of and grows to about 10 inches. Don’t place it in direct sunlight, but in a place where it can get ample sunlight. Gaze at the Happy Bean closely and notice its cute, tiny succulent leaves, which are like green bean pods. Place it near the window or facing one as it flourishes in a room where sunlight shines through. It needs to be given fertilizer once every three weeks.

02 Silver Sprinkles (Pilea glauca)

potted hanging plant - Silver Sprinkles
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Silver Sprinkles Plant

This indoor plant has a profusion of small, round silvery green leaves that look good as a hanging plant or placed atop a table. They are low-maintenance plants just right for an apartment. It requires about six hours of light, in partial shade, and a little moisture. It is one of the recommended low-light plants for an apartment.

03 Panda Paws (Kalanchoe tomentosa)

potted indoor plant - Panda Paws
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Panda Paws (Kalanchoe tomentosa)

The Panda Paws plant is so named because of its panda paw-shaped leaves. Also called Fuzzy Ears due to its thick, silvery-green leaves covered in silvery hairs.  This succulent plant can grow to a height and girth of 2 feet. So, it’s an ideal houseplant for an apartment because of its substantial size. An apartment being small needs a few focal points that are not hard to miss, instead of many small plants randomly placed which ironically can make a small space look and feel even smaller. It’s what they call visual clutter. As to its care, the frequency of watering depends on the season, like during summer it needs watering often, while in the cold season, less watering is recommended.

04 Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata)

exotic sculptural plants for apartments
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Two varieties of the Sansevieria trifasciata.

The sansevieria succulent plants are great indoors as they are outdoors. Sculptural in shape, exotic looks, and hardiness make them the preferred indoor plants that go well with both minimalist, modern interiors as well as opulent, classical ones. As succulent plants, they can survive short droughts, and do well in both strong and low lighting. They’re also popular as garden plants as they provide interesting contrast and counterpoints to other flowering and green plants.

Above extreme right is the Sansivieria trifasciata, and beside it, to the left, is the cultivar (cultivated variety) Dracaena trifasciata “Laurentii.”

more ideal indoor plants for apartments…

05 Dyeriana (Tillandisa dyeriana)

exotic air plants
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Even a small version of this in an apartment would do wonders to an apartment interior.

For homeowners and apartment dwellers who love having great-looking plants but are not keen on taking care of them, brace yourself, an air plant like the Tillandsia dyeriana could be the best one for you. In their natural habitat, they grow on the branches of trees or on other plants. They are epiphytes, in other words. They’re so easy to care for and don’t need to be planted in soil.

And there are many ways to display it, limited only by your imagination. To achieve a more natural look, put it on driftwood, or rocks, or hang it on a tree, which of course can be possible in an apartment setting. If you’re lucky, it may produce attractive blossoms of red leaves with tiny white flowers. Water them about once a week, or depending on the variety.

06 Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema)

small potted plants for apartments
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A young Aglaonema, or Chinese Evergreen, lends a Christmassy vibe with its attractive green leaves tinged with red.

The Chinese Evergreen has attractive leaves with red accents that set off the green. It’s not difficult to take care of it as it does great in low light and requires minimum care. Planted on a neutral-colored pot, it would look great set on the floor, on a side table, or even atop a pedestal.


07 Candelabra Cactus (Euphorbia ingens)

ideal potted indoor trees and plants for the apartment
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Photo by Jan Canty on Unsplash

Plants from desert environments usually have such visual appeal that can make an interior kind of distinctive and modern. Put them against a minimalist background and they stand out (image below). In a free-spirited, bohemian interior (image above), they go well with other attention-grabbing plants, furniture, and décor. In a minimalist, modern apartment (image below), individually potted cacti are placed in an indoor plant box, concealing the pots. A creative way to showcase attractive plants indoors. The Euphorbia ingens, though not a cactus but a succulent, is a sturdy, sculptural, attractive easy-to-care houseplant that can do wonders to any nook in the apartment.

indoor plants
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Photo by Qinghong Shen on Unsplash


Takeaway from ideal indoor plants for apartments

Bring indoor trees and plants to the apartment to add a more restful and pleasurable experience that will supercharge your health and wellness. They can inspire you, make the air cleaner, relax you, and help you be more efficient and productive in your domestic activities, too.

Choosing the ideal indoor plants for apartments and also trees is important.  So that you’d experience their full benefits for your well-being. You could also set up the apartment for a work-from-home gig, for meditation and exercise. Perhaps entertaining visiting family and friends, just lazing around, or spending time to unwind. It’s just so nice to have great-looking indoor plants and trees to take care of and gaze at in your apartment.


after reading ideal indoor plants for apartments…

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green plant on white ceramic pot
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Great gift idea!

Bonsai Trees

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