If you’re someone to follow trends, that may apply to everything from your clothing choices, which tech you own, and even to your houseplants. Some plant species are more in vogue than others, and those are the ones you want most. With a new year upon us, what are trendy indoor plants for 2020?
The trendiest indoor plants for 2020 are as follows:
- Money tree
- Raven ZZ
- Snake plant
- White knight philodendron
- Ginny peperomia
- Hoya imperialis
- Split leaf philodendron
- Ceropegia sandersonii
- Purple-tinged zebrina
- Pink dragon alocasia
- Neon prayer plant maranta
- Chinese fan palm
- Stephania erecta potato caudex
- Monstera deliciosa
While some of the above plant species may look a little familiar to you, most of the variants I’m going to discuss in this article will make you look at that old houseplant in a whole new way. If you’re interested in the most recent version of this article, we just released the list of the trendiest indoor plants in 2022.
But if you’re ready to populate your indoor garden with some on-point plants you might have missed in 2020, keep reading!
16 of the Trendiest Houseplants for 2020
This first trendy plant recommendation comes from Treehugger, which called the money tree or Pachira aquatica the most popular houseplant of the year. This wetland tree in the Malvaceae family was also declared as the “easiest indoor tree” to care for by Apartment Therapy way back in 2011, proving the clout of the money tree runs long and deep.
Besides its simple care, the money tree’s stem famously braids, while its simple, vivid green leaves brighten up any room. If you’re a follower of Feng Shui, it’s believed that houseplants like the money tree can induce good luck and positive energy in your life. Who doesn’t want that in 2020 and any other year?
The ZZ plant is one I’ve featured extensively here on indoorplantsforbeginners.com , but you’ve never seen this humble houseplant like this before! The raven ZZ has gotten so much attention already this year because of its striking trademark color: a stately, gothic black. Whether grown on its own or as part of your extensive indoor garden, the ZZ plant is one to pay attention to. It’s no wonder plant resource WallyGro named it on their list of predictions for trendy 2020 plants.
If you’re not so much a fan of dark color schemes, the variegated ZZ plant is a nice blend of pale yellow and bright green. Still, I’m kind of obsessed with the raven ZZ, as are a lot of people. Do know that this houseplant, officially named the Zamioculcas zamiifolia raven, is a slow grower. For that reason, it’s a little harder to find at gardening supply stores. Rare and pretty? It’s a trendsetter for sure.
The snake plant is a mainstay here at Indoor Plants for Beginners. I recently published an extensive guide on caring for snake plants that you’ll want to read, as well as another article on “Why your Snake Plant Has No Roots“. The Sansevieria trifasciata is known for its well-defined upright leaves with pointed edges. The leaves can be a single color, a combination of several, and sometimes, the snake plant even has stripes or other patterns.
For 2020, the Pantone color of the year is Classic Blue. Pantone says of this color: “instilling calm, confidence, and connection, this enduring blue hue highlights our desire for a dependable and stable foundation on which to build as we cross the threshold into a new era.”
Any houseplant that plays up well with Classic Blue is a winner for 2020, and it just so happens the snake plant does so beautifully!
White Knight Philodendron
You’re likely quite familiar with the philodendron, an Araceae family member with nearly 500 different species. One of those is the white knight philodendron, although it’s quite a rarity. It continues on with the 2020 trend of variegated versions of everyone’s favorite traditional houseplants.
Instead of bright green leaves, the white knight philodendron wears a darker shade of green. The leaves are still the same shape and size for the most part, but they’re flecked with random patches of bright white. This may be in small splotches on some leaves and larger areas on others. The red stems are also worth talking about, as they add a pop of color to this much sought-after houseplant.
Even if you don’t follow the Pantone color of the year trend, it’s hard to ignore that color in general is huge in 2020. Instead of an indoor garden with variations of green, try mixing in other colors for a rainbow made by Mother Nature herself. The next few houseplants I’ll cover will allow you to do just that, beginning with the Ginny peperomia.
This multicolored houseplant features green centers, yellow borders, and bright red or pink edges. A Piperaceae family member, it’s no surprise this peperomia plant goes by other such names as the tricolor peperomia, the red edge peperomia, or the rainbow peperomia.
To keep the color as strong as possible, provide moderate to bright light and water the Ginny peperomia only when the soil is very dry.Pro Tip
Although they’re not succulents, peperomias will still store water in their stems and leaves, so they don’t need to be watered as often.
Also showing up on WallyGro’s trendy plants list, the Hoya imperialis is another attention-grabbing plant to consider. This houseplant is known for its flowers, with stamens in a soft white and petals that are red to pink. These petals are shiny, smooth, and pointy at the edges, giving them a unique look. Also, you’ll be hard-pressed to find bigger flowers from the Hoya than the imperialis’.
Admittedly, the Hoya imperialis does not bloom particularly quickly, but hey, that just adds to its appeal. If you put in the time and the love, then eventually, this Hoya will mature and start producing the flowers that have made it so famous.
You’ve really got to smell the flowers for yourself at some point. An indoor gardener who’s familiar with these exotic looking flowers will be kind to point out that the pleasing scent they emit is actually stronger after the sun goes down. So keep that in mind if you ever have a chance to smell a Hoya Imperialis for yourself.
Split Leaf Philodendron
If I asked you to close your eyes and imagine a well-decorated living room like one in an interior decorating magazine, which houseplant would sit in the corner? You’d probably say split leaf philodendron, which is sometimes called the swiss cheese plant.
While this variety of the philodendron has been popular for many years before 2020, the shape of its foliage landed it on Treehugger’s trendy plants list for the year. The leaves almost split like palm fronds, giving your home or office a tropical feel without even trying. This chic houseplant prefers bright lighting, fertilizer on a two-week basis, and warm indoor temps that never go below 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you’ve searched high and low for a cool-looking plant to add to your indoor garden, that ends now. The Ceropegia sandersonii–sometimes referred to as the umbrella plant, fountain flower, or parachute plant–is a sleeper hit I’m happy to introduce you to.
This evergreen houseplant has leaves that are succulent-like in nature. Flowers up to three inches in size grow on the stalk, although these flowers can’t open much. That’s because of the partial fusion of the corolla lobes.
The petals are anything but basic, as they grow a dome over the flower that resembles an umbrella. If your friends and family are anything like mine, they’ll want one of their own when they see you’re growing the Ceropegia sandersonii!
Getting back to colorful picks that are topping trends lists for 2020, next, there’s the purple-tinged zebrina. This is a tradescantia, a perennial wildflower with more than 70 species. As you could have guessed from its name, this variety of the tradescantia is known for its vivid purple hue.
The striped pattern on the curvy, pointed leaves is a light lavender to a darker, richer purple. This Commelinaceae family member prefers shady conditions, so please don’t put the plant in the sun to maintain its color.
If the soil feels relatively dry, then it’s time to water. Its temperatures shouldn’t exceed 100 degrees nor drop below 45 degrees. With time, the purple-tinged zebrina has been known to grow between three and five feet long, although most of them are on the shorter side of 3 feet.
Pink Dragon Alocasia
The alocasia is one indoor plant I haven’t touched on before. It’s an Araceae family member that’s considered a tuberous perennial. It grows primarily in Eastern Australia and Asia, where there are nearly 80 species to choose from.
With that little introduction out of the way, I wanted to focus more on a particular variety of the alocasia, the pink dragon. While the standard alocasia has dark green leaves with distinctive white veins, the pink one gets a little more colorful.
The Polly alocasia also got some nods as a trendy houseplant for the year, but not for the same reason. Instead, this alocasia variety is known for its reddish-brown stems and crinkled leaves.
Neon Prayer Plant Maranta
On its own, the maranta is a pretty great houseplant to grow. A Marantaceae family member, this species hails from the West Indies and South America. For those of you out there who often wonder where some of the plant names often come from, in this case it was the Italian botanist and physician Bartolomeo Maranta who is this houseplant’s namesake. There are about 50 species of maranta, with the neon prayer plant a preferred pick for 2020.
A traditional maranta has large, oval-shaped leaves with veins and dark green, almost black patterns between each pair of veins. The neon prayer plant maranta kicks things up a notch, with yellow or bright green leaves emblazoned with pretty red veins. If you want your plants mostly green, then try the red prayer plant, which only has the red veins.
Also, don’t be worried if your maranta leaves grow facing downward, as that’s normal of this species.
Chinese Fan Palm
Floridians, as I was for 23 years, will likely know the Chinese fan palm, as it grows commonly in that state. While it’s typically an outdoor plant, the Livistona chinensis does well indoors, too. Just make sure it has a sunny environment. Then its long, fringed fronds will make an appearance.
Palm fans have started popping up more and more as a trendy houseplant, this year especially. If you take one look at this palm species, it’s not hard to see why. Like the split leaf philodendron, you get an injection of tropical style in each room that has a Chinese fan palm. If you have an office with a lot of natural sunlight, think Florida sunlight, then growing a chinese fan palm in your office can make it feel tropical while still elegant or classy. Hopefully you know what I mean by that.
Treehugger listed the cactus as another must-have popular houseplant for 2020. I’ve written before about how cacti and its other succulent brethren change up the look of your indoor garden because they’re so unlike other houseplants. Another reason so many indoor gardeners are going gaga for the cactus in 2020 is because it’s relatively easy to care for. It is a succulent, after all.
Which cacti species should you get? If you only have low-light growing conditions, such as at an office, then the claw cactus, scarlet ball cactus, and Dutchman’s pipe cactus are all good picks.
The rat tail cactus might show up as a trendy houseplant for 2021, as it’s a small cactus that dangles in a planter and produces vivid red flowers. The long-living Saguaro cactus, the Old Lady Cactus covered in white hairs, or the appealing Christmas cactus are other great picks that will fit your trendy aesthetic.
If you’re still on a cactus kick, you can also explore the euphorbia genus, which is part of the spurge family. While a euphorbia isn’t a cactus itself, it’d be right at home among other succulents looks-wise. Also, with more than 2,000 different members of the genus, you certainly won’t run out of euphorbia houseplants to grow anytime soon.
One euphorbia you’ve probably owned is the poinsettia. For any other time of the year besides Christmas, you might set your sights on the Euphorbia griffithii, also known as the fireglow for its reddish-orange flowers.
The Diamond Frost euphorbia produces many miniature white flowers and looks dazzling in a pot. Also, while it doesn’t flower, the Euphorbia glacier blue has a lovely blueish-green tint very on trend with Pantone’s Classic Blue.
Stephania Erecta Potato Caudex
Could 2020 be the year the Stephania Erecta Potato Caudex plant gets on the map? While some liken it as something between the Chinese money plant and the Nasturtium, this houseplant is truly in a league of its own.
As a type of fat plant, the Stephania Erecta Potato Caudex plant grows on a bulb that looks like a potato. While it sprouts few leaves from its roots, these are circular in shape with lighter green veins running throughout.
Unfortunately, when people spot the bulbs in the wild, they’re sometimes stolen, making it much harder to get your hands on this special houseplant.
I can’t wrap up this list without mentioning another huge trendsetter for 2020, the swiss cheese plant or Monstera deliciosa. In fact, this looks like it could be a banner year for the Monstera plant in general, as the Monstera adansonii has gotten a lot of love as well.
Both plants have a similar look rife with bright, holey leaves. The M. adansonii grows its leaves on a much smaller scale, while the swiss cheese plant is quite sizable. Its leaves look somewhat like the split leaf philodendron’s, yet with more holes. This tropical plant is quite adaptable, as it can handle both low light and brighter light.
What are the best places to buy trendy houseplants?
Want to get your hands on any the cool houseplants featured in this article? I will be adding links to a few of the places I’ve personally vetted in the next few weeks but until I do, I recommend starting with your favorite gardening supply store. Remember that some of these houseplants are slow growers, like the ZZ raven. Others are hard to come across, such as the Stephania Erecta Potato Caudex plant.
While you can order plants online, always make sure you’re using a reputable site. It’s better if you stick to planting supply sites, as they will know how to safely pack and transport the houseplant so it’s undamaged in transport.
What are lucky plants for 2020?
If 2020 is the year you want to turn your luck around, then the money tree is one houseplant you certainly want to grow. There are plenty of other plants that are considered lucky for the year as well.
According to AsiaOne, this Chinese New Year, the focus is on flowering plants. That’s because of an old Chinese saying, “blossom flowers bring wealth.”
Whether it’s wealth or luck you’re after, if you’re the type of person who believes your houseplants bring you good fortune of any kind, add these plants to your indoor garden ASAP:
- Marigold, a plant for longevity
- Guzmania lingulata or the scarlet star, which signifies good fortune
- Pitcher plant due to their resemblance to money bags
- Cherry or peach blossoms for growth, prosperity, and even romance
- Tangerine tree for wealth
- Phalaenopsis orchids, which look like butterflies and represent longevity, vitality, and happiness
- Oncidium orchids, as these could increase your abundance and fertility
- Lucky bamboo, which may promote good health
- Kalanchoe, as it could make your life more prosperous and wealthier
- Jade plant, a good houseplant for more fortune, wealth, and prosperity
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