By Lynn Fosbender of Rooted, by Pollen – Chicago
Including Houseplants in a Nursery
When a new little one is joining the family, creating a cozy nursery is one of the exciting tasks to welcome the new arrival. The crib, the changing table, the rocking chair…and the plants! Houseplants enhance emotional wellbeing (not only the kiddo’s, but let’s remember yours, too!) and let your little one connect with nature by bringing some of the outside in!
How to Choose Houseplants for a Nursery
When choosing houseplants for a nursery, do yourself a favor and choose ones that are easy to care for. You’ll be focused on providing care for the new baby, and don’t need to have a difficult plant added to your responsibilities! Also, you’ll want to choose non-toxic plants if they’ll be within reach of the baby.
Which Houseplants are Best for a Nursery
I’ve selected 10 houseplants well-suited for a nursery. These best houseplants for nurseries are considered non-toxic to kids and are easy to care for.
Ponytail Palm. Beaucarnea recurvata.
Ponytail palms are fun, quirky plants that remind me of Fraggles! When they are larger, they have thick brown stems topped by cascading grass-like foliage. They can handle a variety of light conditions, but you’ll see the most growth in a brighter spot. Bonus: These tolerant plants won’t mind if you skip a watering or two.
Nerve Plant. Fittonia albivenis.
Dark green leaves with striking white veins are the hallmark of this diminutive plant, perfect for a shelf or other spot where space is limited. Nerve plants have a reputation for being dramatic, because when they’re a bit overdue on their watering, their stems flop over. But I consider this a good thing when you’re busy with a new baby in the house, because it’s communicating its needs. If you forget to water, this plant will remind you to grab the watering can!
Spider Plants. Cholophytum comosum.
Easy peasy care make these a good houseplant choice for new parents. With long, narrow leaves and trailing baby plants, spider plants are perfect for a hanging basket. Medium to bright, indirect light is best for spider plants. And once the plant (and your child) are older, you can propagate the spider plant babies together and share them with friends!
Wax Plant. Hoya sp.
There are many types of hoya available, with Hoya carnosa being one of the most readily available varieties. Keep an eye out for variegated forms of hoya. Some have lovely, light pink leaves, such as ‘Krimson Princess’ and ‘Krimson Queen.’ Hoyas like medium to bright, indirect light and can handle some lower light conditions. Let the top couple of inches of the soil dry out before watering.
Parlor Palm. Chamaedorea elegans.
If you’re looking for a taller plant to place on the floor, parlor palms (also called bamboo palms) are an easy-care, easy-to-find option. They love bright, indirect light, but will also tolerate lower light situations.
Lady Palm. Rhapis excelsa.
If you’re looking for a less common floor plant for a lower light situation, consider a lady palm. Lady palms tolerate low light conditions, so they’re perfect for that corner near the rocking chair. Because they are slow growing, they can be a bit on the pricier side.
Watermelon Peperomia. Peperomia argyreia.
I love the all the peperomias, but watermelon peperomia are my very favorite, with their green and white striped leaves and reddish stems. Like most peperomias, watermelon peperomias like for their soil to dry out quite a bit in between waterings, so they aren’t very needy in terms of care.
Purple Inch Plant. Tradescantia zebrina.
Add a pop of color to the nursery with this easy-care plant that is also easy to propagate. The purple inch plant’s trailing stems make it perfect for a shelf or a hanging planter. They can handle a bit of direct sun and will reward you with the richest color when in bright, indirect light. Purple inch plants like for their soil to stay a bit moist, so may be on a slightly more frequent watering schedule than most houseplants.
Bird’s Nest Fern. Asplenium nidus.
While many ferns can be a bit fussy, birds nest ferns are an easy-care plant that like medium light but can also tolerate lower light conditions. They like for their soil to stay consistently moist, so water once the surface of the soil feels dry. If the leaf color fades, water it a bit more frequently.
Zebra Haworthia. Haworthia fasciata.
If you’re more of the water-once-a-month type of plant owner, the haworthia is for you! Unlike most succulents, haworthia do not like a lot of direct light, but prefer a bright spot without the sun directly hitting it. Haworthia resemble a small aloe plant with dark green and white striped leaves. They stay relatively small, so are perfect for adding a little pop of green to a shelf near a window.
Whether it’s for your own baby’s nursery or a gift for new parents, this guide to the best houseplants for nurseries will point you in the right direction!
Check out Rootedchicago.com if you’re interested in purchasing any of these for your nursery!
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