5 Big and Beautiful Indoor Plants

These days there is plenty of talk about environmentally friendly ‘green’ homes. But let’s talk about a truly green home — one full of living plants, where the inhabitants can relax and nurture their souls surrounded by natural beauty. It’s time to bring back big, bold indoor plants that create impact!

Soft-tip yucca
Yucca elephantipes
Also known as a spineless yucca, there’s nothing timid about this bold South American native. Bring out its natural beauty and enhance its sculptural shape by removing old leaves from the bottom of the trunk. You can also keep its width and height in check by cutting back the top and stems.

To ensure your yucca looks its best, find a space where it can enjoy bright indirect light and keep its soil moist but not wet.
Yuccas don’t like stuffy, hot rooms so from time to time, place it near an open window for some fresh air.

Fiddle-leaf fig
Ficus lyrata
A popular house plant in the 50s and 60s, the fiddle-leaf fig is back in a big way. You may have noticed smaller varieties but the tall types are just as handsome, with their fiddle-shaped deep-green leaves.

Position your fiddle-leaf fig in a brightly-lit spot such as near a window, water only when the top inch of soil is dry and feed once a month in spring and summer.

The large leaves tend to collect dust, which can block light absorption, so keep your fiddle-leaf fig healthy by occasionally wiping the leaves down with a cloth.

Happy plant
Dracaena massangeana
There are some 70s interior trends that are best left in the past – shag carpet for one. But one thing we’re glad to see making a comeback is the happy plant. Its glossy, sword-like leaves are complemented by a unique trunk-like stem.

Keep your happy plant happy with well-draining soil and watering only once the soil has had a chance to dry out. Gently wipe leaves clean to help prevent mealybug and mist with warm water if the room is very dry.

Umbrella plant
With the right conditions and care, in just one growing season the long-living umbrella plant may easily become the tallest plant in your home. To ensure your umbrella plant reaches new heights, place it in a spot with bright indirect light, wait until the top of the soil is dry before you water it again and give it an all-purpose fertiliser while it’s growing in spring and summer. To encourage bushy growth, you can give it a regular trim.

Kentia palm
Howea forsteriana
This Aussie native from Lord Howe Island will add a rich burst of green to your space thanks to beautiful, lush fronds. Slow-growing and hardy, a kentia palm will tolerate dark and dry corners of your house and a degree of neglect, but they grow best with bright indirect light. Water only when the top layer of soil is dry. Your kentia palm will also benefit from regular holidays outside in a shady spot. This is also a great time to hose it down and wash dust off.