How to Choose the Right Plant for Your Bathroom

by Sumathi Narayanan Realty LLC 04/18/2022

Most popular houseplants are native to tropical climates, which might make your bathroom seem like a perfect fit. While the warmth and humidity from baths and showers is perfect for many varieties of plant, there are some other factors that come into play. Here we will go over the key things to consider when deciding what plants to add to your bathroom decor.


The first thing to consider is whether your bathroom has a natural light source. Sunlight is obviously crucial for keeping plants alive and well, but there are varieties that tolerate or even prefer the shade. If your bathroom gets lots of bright indirect light during the day, you will have a larger list of plants to choose from. If your window is shaded or if you don’t have a window at all, you’ll need to opt for a low-light loving type of bathroom plant. Fluorescent bulbs alone are enough for some plants, so don’t lose hope if you’re lacking windows.

Usage Frequency

Many plants thrive in the high humidity levels of a bathroom. However, it’s important to remember that human usage actually creates the humidity. If nobody is taking showers or baths, the air in the bathroom does not differ from anywhere else in the house. This means that if you have multiple bathrooms, some will be better suited for plants than others. Primary bathrooms or bathrooms shared by multiple family members are ideal because of the constant usage. Guest bathrooms, powder rooms or otherwise less frequently visited bathrooms won’t have the same humidity level.

Temperature Fluctuation

Some bathrooms can go from hot to cold and back in 24 hours. If you notice your bathroom gets dramatically cooler at night than during the day, it might be a cause of stress for plants. Rapid temperature changes are difficult even for the hardiest plants, so if you want to keep some living greenery in your bathroom do what you can to regulate the temperature. If you’re not sure how much fluctuation you have to work with, try putting a portable thermometer in the bathroom for a few days and make a note of the temperature at different times during the day.

Plant Suggestions

Based on your specific bathroom conditions, there might be some plants better for you than others. Here are some recommendations:

For low light, go for snake plant, spider plant, ZZ plant and shade-loving ferns. All will be fine with bathroom moisture and living in low to moderate natural light. For ZZ plants in particular, fluorescent bulbs alone should be enough to keep them alive and happy.

For lower humidity, pothos and Chinese evergreen are excellent options. Both are lush and hardy plants that don’t need the extra moisture from the bathroom, making them perfect for a guest or secondary bathroom with less regular usage.

For dramatic temperature changes, air plants are your best option. These plants can make excellent decorative accents in a bathroom and survive colder temperatures with ease.

If your primary goal is visual appeal, never underestimate the aesthetic power of artificial plants. Some of the more modern faux greenery available on the market is incredibly lifelike and won’t care at all about your bathroom conditions. Otherwise, keep the above considerations in mind when determining what plant will work best for your bathroom.