13 Best Tropical Plants That Can Thrive Anywhere

side view of new furniture, wooden countertop, gas stove, built in oven equipment, cooking hood, kitchenware supplies, houseplant in flower pot at kitchen in apartment with modern interior

Tropical plants are the secret to bringing fun to your foliage and your home or garden. No matter the season, give beauties like bromeliads, philodendrons, or any monstera variety the right care and they’ll flourish into plants you can proudly admire. Hailing from warm-weather locales from Australia to South America, tropical plants are just as stunning as tropical flowers, and they can deliver the impact that’s been missing in your decor. Why pack your bags to take in all that nature has to offer when you can admire the world’s natural wonders from the comfort of your home?

The majority of tropical plants are easy to care for and make thoughtful gifts for loved ones. Popular houseplants like philodendrons and ferns thrive in warmer temperatures but are pretty tolerant and don’t require much by way of maintenance, but they do crave humidity. If your home is more on the dry side, bring your plant into areas that garner higher humidity levels, like your bathroom. They’ll love a steamy shower as much as you do.

From sprawling leaves that can run up your walls to potted succulents that make people watching from your window twice as fun, bright tropical plants are instant mood boosters. To narrow down the must-haves you’ll need in your personal jungle, we found the most popular tropical plants and looked up everything you need to know about taking care of them. Below, take in the bold tropical plants that uplift your decor and your mood.

houseplant on table in front of wall at homeWESTEND61//GETTY IMAGES

Ficus benjamina (Weeping Fig)

Bring on the drama with a leafy fig tree. Weeping figs are named for their slender, leaning branches and dark green downcast leaves. They’re popular houseplants because they can live for more than 20 years. Native to Asia and Australia, this elegant tree grows quickly and requires repotting in a blink of an eye. Do note that the plant is toxic (specifically the sap) to humans and animals as it can irritate the skin.

Average height: Three to six feet

Native region: Indonesia, Australia, India, Asia

Light: Bright, filtered

aloe vera and gray bust on nightstand near floor lamp

Aloe barbadenis (Aloe Vera)

You can cross aloe vera off your grocery list when it’s flourishing on your living room side table. With more than 500 varieties of the plant, aloe vera is a crowd favorite dating back to Queen Cleopatra’s time for its clear gel and healing properties. Place your plant in an area where it will receive tons of sunlight, and be sure not to overwater it.

Average height: One to two feet

Native region: Arabian Peninsula, Madagascar, Africa

Light: Bright, indirect

close up of a modern clean scandinavian style interior with a flower pot and a potted plant on the background of an empty white wall, space for text minimal composition minimalism at homeALEKSANDR ZUBKOV//GETTY IMAGES

Howea forsteriana (Kentia palm)

The Kentia palm plant is pricey since it’s not easy to propagate, but we think the slow but steady growth is worth the investment. This plant can grow to be up to 40 feet tall! The good news? This spiky plant doesn’t require a lot of care—it’s fine in low light and with low water.

Average height: 12 feet (indoors)

Native region: Lord Howe Island, Australia

Light: Partial, low light

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potted plant and pottery

C. terminalis (Cordyline)

This colorful, palm-like plant has green and pink coloring (the hue can be as dark as burgundy) running along the leaves. It’s the splash of color your home is looking for! Since the plant grows upward it can add depth to your space. Cordylines require high humidity levels, rainwater, and distilled water.

Average height: Two to four feet

Native region: New Zealand, Indochina, Australia

Light: Bright to medium-bright, indirect

white anthurium plant in flower, in a pot, on a white shelfROSEMARY CALVERT//GETTY IMAGES

Peace Lily

Here’s a beloved houseplant that loves to be drenched in sunlight. They’re inexpensive (perfect for gift giving), easy to grow, and lovely to look at since the plant features white flowers that stand out against the glossy green leaves. It’s essentially the prettiest air purifier you can have in your space!

Average height: One to four feet

Native region: Central America, Asia

Light: Low light, partial

stylish minimal interior with simple sofa and indoor green house plant, philodendron, and white wall


The three main features of the Philodendron genus: large leaves, rich green shade, and a glossy finish. This low-maintenance beauty can grow upright, trail, or climb. It’s the perfect decorative accent for your home if you’re looking for a way to spruce up your walls or windows. How often to water a philodendron depends on how much light the plant receives, but the average is every one to two weeks.

Average height: One to 20 feet

Native region: South America

Light: Partial

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pink aglaonema chinese evergreen in a plant potINSUNG JEON//GETTY IMAGES

Aglaonema (Chinese Evergreen)

From dark green to punchy coral, a Chinese evergreen plant is a beauty filled with personality. These plants work indoors and outdoors, taking their time to grow into a sight so lovely your neighbors will insist you share all your plant care tips. In addition to looking gorgeous, these plants are extremely low maintenance. The color is the key to determining how much light your plant needs.

Average height: One to three feet

Native region: Asia

Light: Full, partial

dieffenbachia seguine or dumb cane

Dieffenbachia (Dumb Cane)

The aggressive name of this plant owes to its toxicity. Every part of it can be dangerous to pets and people, from the sap to the roots. As toxic as it can be, this plant is a very common houseplant choice. It’s native to South America and the Caribbean, and it grows best in high humidity and dappled shade.

Average height: Three to five feet

Native region: South America, Caribbean

Light: Partial

many different monstera in pots, on a wooden table, on a white background,copy spaceELVIRA KASHAPOVA//GETTY IMAGES

Monstera Deliciosa

Under the same family of philodendrons, monsteras (also known as the Swiss cheese plant) have heart-shaped leaves that split along the perimeter. This easygoing gem is a must-have whether it’s freshly potted or three years old. A monstera has to be watered regularly and requires a pot with multiple draining holes.

Average height: Three to 15 feet

Native region: Central America

Light: Dappled, partial

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schefflera leaves

Schefflera arboricola (Umbrella Plant)

If your thumb isn’t the greenest, here’s another easy-t0-grow plant that’s tolerant of various growing environments. Umbrella plant leaves are oval and drop down in the shape of—you guessed it—an umbrella. The plant requires indirect light, humidity, warmth, and well-draining potting soil.

Average height: Eight to 10 feet

Native region: Taiwan

Light: Bright, indirect


Strelitzia (Bird of Paradise)

With a name inspired by a bird taking flight, bird of paradise is a tropical plant standout. Its long, spiked leaves add eye-catching color and texture. Just plant it in an area sheltered from the wind; a strong gust can break off those beautiful leaves. If you have pets, know that it’s considered toxic and should be planted out of their reach.

Average height: Three to six feet

Native region: South Africa

Light: Full sun to partial shade

asplenium antiquum bird's nest fern

Asplenium nidus (Bird’s Nest Fern)

The rippled fronds on this fern give it a playful crownlike shape you’ll love watching grow. It thrives in high humidity as most tropical plants do. Keep a bird’s nest fern away from direct sunlight—it can burn those bright green leaves to a crisp!

Average height: Three to five feet

Native region: Australia, Asia, Africa

Light: Bright, indirect

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houseplants in a windowCYNDI MONAGHAN//GETTY IMAGES

Crassula ovata (Jade Plant)

Known as the lucky or money plant (not to be confused with a money tree), this succulent is the best way to thank your favorite host. If you’re someone who has watched your plants wither away due to a lack of water, the jade plant doesn’t require constant watering. It can live up to 70 years! Place it near a window and watch this budding succulent work its magic.

Average height: Three to six feet

Native region: Africa

Light: Bright, full sun

sansevieria potted plant

Sansevieria (Snake Plant)

Snake plants are an incredibly popular houseplant. The wavy green leaves are streaked with yellow or cream like a snake, thus the name. The plant steals the show no matter where you put it. It’s a great beginner plant since it’s highly tolerant to various growing conditions and has a varying watering schedule depending on the season.

Average height: Six inches to 12 feet

Native region: West Africa

Light: Bright, partial light

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