The Best Houseplants to Make a Stylish Statement

Add drama to your living spaces with bold, sculptural plants in just-right stylish pots.

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November 25, 2014

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Photo By: Logee’s Plants for Home and Garden,

Photo By:

Photo By:

Photo By: Logee’s Plants for Home and Garden,

Photo By:

Photo By:

Photo By: Logee’s Plants for Home and Garden,

Large Scale Luxury

Large plants automatically draw the eye in interior settings. To breathe life into a living room, add plants that match the scale of furniture pieces. This mix of houseplants unfurls leaves with varying textures that work to complement one another. The plants include a spikey yucca (background) and broad fiddleleaf fig (Ficus lyrata) in the foreground. When selecting large plants, make sure you have enough space that the plant won’t interfere with traffic flow or otherwise be an obstacle, like blocking a view. Choose cachepots that match your décor.

Leaves With Drama

Focal point houseplants don’t have to be large to get the job done. Draw attention to an area of a room or a special piece of furniture with an unusual plant like Alocasia Poly. Its variegated leaves are a can’t-miss in any size room and look even more striking when unfurling in an heirloom footed cachepot. The secret to success with Alocasia Poly is high light and high humidity. Variegation patterns on leaves are prettiest when the plant receives strong sunlight. Use a sheer curtain to filter sunlight in southern regions.

Soften Architectural Lines

Place houseplants to provide a leafy contrast to the hard lines of windows and furniture. Peace lily is a natural for filling a corner, especially if you select the one known as Sensation. This beauty grows to 6 feet tall and easily commands attention in a large room. It holds its own beside a large window, where it receives the high light necessary to promote steady bloom. Tuck it into a simple dark container to let glossy leaves and stately flowers steal the spotlight.

Give Leaves a Shine

Flowering plants provide attention-grabbing color, especially when you choose a plant with long-lasting flowers, like anthurium. This tough-as-nails houseplant unfurls red blooms with a waxy sheen that open steadily all year long when plants receive bright light. Give the thick, leathery leaves on anthurium—or any houseplant—a sheen by spraying with a solution of 1/2 cup milk (skim or reduced fat) and 3/4 cup water. Rub the leaves gently with a soft cloth, then dry with a clean, soft cloth. Be sure to spray both the top and bottom of leaves.

Choose Bright Pots

You don’t always need a large plant to make a statement. Unusual leaf shapes and textures draw the eye, too, and can make up for size in smaller homes or rooms. One way to create more impact with houseplants is to group several smaller plants that combine well. This trio features plants with variegated leaves (left to right): Dracaena ‘Lemon Surprise,’ polka dot plant (Hypoestes) and gold crest false aralia (Plerandra elegantissima ‘Gold Crest’). When combining plants, choose ones that need similar growing conditions. These plants thrive with medium to high light. If you love bright colors, select cachepots for plants that inject a pop of color.

Perfect Planting Partners

Combination planters let you add color to even the smallest space, and succulents grow slowly enough that they won’t overtake the tight quarters. An eye-catching mix of succulents grows well together, needing the same care regime: little water, high light and a coarse, cactus-type soil mix. When you create an indoor container garden, make sure plants have similar light and water needs.

Play With Color

Pair colorful houseplants with boldly painted walls to create a home décor masterpiece. This living work of art offers a changing tableau as the plant grows and blooms. Rhizomatous begonias like 'Autumn Ember' offer a great option for colorful leaves on an easy-growing houseplant. Other good choices for strong leaf color include hemigraphis, calathea and croton.

Big, Bright Bromeliads

Give any room in your home a splash of calypso color with a tropical bromeliad. These exotic beauties have strappy leaves topped by clusters of red, orange, yellow, purple, or white flowers. The blossoms last for weeks, capturing attention in any setting. Bromeliads are easy to grow and look their best in medium to high light. Increase their impact by popping the plant into a complementary-colored cachepot.

Create an Architectural Combination

When choosing a plant to make a bold statement in your home, instead of one single dramatic specimen, stage a grouping of several plants. This quartet features variegated houseplants with contrasting leaf textures that combine to create an eye-pleasing scene: dracaena surrounded by silver pothos, Aglaonema and spider plant. Stairstep pot sizes to stir more interest. Skip the cachepots and simply wrap plants in burlap for a unified look that’s natural, inexpensive and an easy fit with many decorating schemes.

Think About Plant Size

As you select plants to serve as focal points in your décor, consider how large the plant grows and also how quickly it achieves that size. Plants like sentry palm and Swiss cheese plant (Monstera deliciosa) can double their size in a few years, given the right conditions. Chinese money plant, on the other hand, maintains a tidy size, growing slowly to 8 to 12 inches tall. With thick, succulent-like leaves, the plant doesn’t demand much water and thrives in low light. Unusual, round leaves make this plant a conversation piece.

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