Houseplants have blown up in popularity over the past few years and it seems like every living room across the country now has at least one plant taking residence. If you’ve fallen in love with the pictures of living rooms on social media that are as full of plants as they are furniture, but don’t have a green thumb, you’re in the right place.
If you’ve been wary of trying artificial plants in your home, don’t be! Artificial plants aren’t the obviously-plastic plants of your youth. Nowadays, they’re barely distinguishable from the real thing unless you get really up-close and personal. You can achieve the same on-trend look as all your favourite green-fingered influencers but without the hassle of trying to keep a plant alive.
Artificial plants look real, require no more maintenance than the occasional dusting, and won’t die on you or grow you out of house and home. Real houseplants are beautiful, but there are very few plants that stay small! For most of us, the best way to get that nature-filled living room is to invest in quality artificial plants. Read on to learn about 11 ways you can transform your living room with artificial plants.
11 Ways to Transform Your Living Room with Artificial Plants
1. Use Hanging and/or Trailing Plants
Hanging plants and trailing plants work wonders in a living room, producing a relaxed, often bohemian feel. That said, using hanging and trailing plants is most definitely not reserved for those with boho style. Place a trailing plant in a pot on your highest shelves and arrange the foliage so it tumbles down over the edge of the shelf. If you have places to hang hanging planters from, or can add hooks, hanging planters are a beautiful way to bring greenery to any living space. If you don’t have room for either of these ideas but love the look, our artificial hanging willow vine can be tucked onto any narrow shelf, behind mirrors and pictures, and anywhere else you’d like just a touch of greenery.
2. Embrace the Mediterranean
If your idea of the perfect vacation is jetting off to Greece, then you’ll love our artificial olive trees. These trees are the ideal accent for a minimalist or modern room with a muted color palette. Combine them with a stone-look pot to highlight the relaxing colors. You can use just one as a statement plant, but we also love how they look when they bookend large pieces of furniture in your living room.
3. Infuse Your Living Room with Tropical Warmth
Us Brits spend much of the year looking out of the window and seeing lashing rain, grey days, bare trees, or the darkness of winter evenings. If you spend those days fantasizing about somewhere warmer, then an abundance of artificial tropical plants will go a long way to helping you feel warm and happy when you have to spend time inside. We recommend using one or two large statement plants with several medium-sized plants, and a few small plants to get the best effect. Here are some of our favorites:
- Artificial Bird of Paradise: This is an ideal statement plant, and really shouldn’t be used any other way. With big, wide leaves and long stems, this is the ideal plant to set the tone of your indoor tropical paradise. Place in a corner or beside a bookshelf or TV unit to brighten a dark space or draw the eye to the most important area of the room.
- Artificial Banana Canna: The banana canna is a great alternative to a Bird of Paradise plant, and should be used as a statement plant. They have wide, fan-like leaves that always attract attention. If you want to use this plant in a small living room, consider raising it a few feet on a low table or in a plant stand so the foliage is above the height of your head when you’re sitting and relaxing.
- Artificial Parlor Palms: Palm trees are the iconic tropical plant and have been a mainstay in homes for over a century. Palm plants are a great choice if you are working with a smaller space because their thin leaves allow you to see through the plant to the wall behind, so visually the “end” of the room isn’t any closer.
- Artificial Monstera: If you’ve been lusting after plant-filled rooms on social media or elsewhere online, they probably had a monstera somewhere in the room. Also often called the “swiss cheese plant”, this is a great statement plant for small rooms or a medium-size plant for larger rooms. If you’ve got the space, place an artificial monstera in front of one of the statement plants with a smaller plant beside it for a lush plant corner.
4. Use Plenty of Small Plants
You’d be surprised by how much of a difference using lots of smaller artificial plants can make to your living room, especially if you don’t have room for large plants. Just because you’re short on space for a five or six-foot-tall plant doesn’t mean you can’t transform your living room. If you need to use small plants, you simply need to use as many plants in different textures and styles as you can to give your living space more life. You don’t need to go full-bore here unless you want to – if you just want an infusion of life a centerpiece plant on your coffee table will do plenty.
Artificial succulents, Boston ferns, cacti, small grasses, and other plants between 5cm and 40cm tall are ideal for side tables, coffee tables, desks and dining tables, bookshelves, mantles, and other shelving. Use just one, or create small groupings of plants. If you’re using the same kind of plant, odd or even numbers work well, but if you’re using a mix of different types of plant, try to stick to an odd number (for example a group of 3 or 5).
5. Choose a Focal Plant
One extra-large plant is generally all a living room needs unless you’ve got a large, open-plan space. Either way, each sitting area in your living room can have a large focal plant that attracts attention when you’re in that space and brings it to life. We touched on some of the best tropical plants earlier, so here are some of our other favorite options:
- Artificial Fiddle Leaf Fig: these plants have big, oval-shaped leaves that hang from the branches. While the live version of this plant is often more stem than leaf, artificial versions are much more balanced with a much more aesthetically pleasing distribution of leaves.
- Artificial Bamboo: Artificial bamboo is a great choice if you’re looking for a statement plant that won’t take up too much horizontal space in your room – these plants are tall and thin, with soft, thin leaves that flow from the stems. Our artificial bamboo plants have real bamboo stems so they often fool just about anyone that looks at them. We have a few different types of bamboo plants available, so if you’d like something a little different from the traditional light-stemmed bamboo plant, why not try one with a black or green stem instead?
- Artificial Ficus Tree: Ficus trees have been a popular choice for decades, so don’t overlook it simply because they don’t currently steal the spotlight the way the Fiddle Leaf or Monstera do. This plant has an abundance of small, round, or heart-shaped leaves in a deep green colour, and usually has a woven stem. Ficus trees work well with any style of decor, and any colour wall, so if you’re looking for something tried-and-true that will work anywhere in your house, this is a great choice.
- Artificial Snake Plant: Also known as Mother-in-Law’s Tongue, the iconic snake plant has also been a popular houseplant for decades but is now experiencing a boom in popularity. You’ll usually find artificial snake plants in one of two colours: either with the famous yellow tips or with soft, wavy silver lines running horizontally along the leaves.
- Artificial Lemon Tree: if you’d prefer something bright and cheerful, opt for an artificial lemon tree! These small artificial citrus trees warm any space and look forever optimistic.
6. Combine Your Plants with Colourful Pots
If your living space feels a little cold and bare but you don’t want to add coloured soft furnishings, using coloured and/or patterned plant pots will add that splash of colour you’re looking for.
7. Stay On-Trend with Artificial Eucalyptus
8. Choose a Refined Look with Artificial Boxwood
If you have refined tastes and all those leafy, wild tropical plants simply won’t work for your space, try bringing artificial boxwood inside. While we often find topiary outside, it works just as well inside and adds that touch of nature to your living space while keeping those refined lines. Artificial topiary spirals are a popular choice, as are artificial topiary balls which you can stand alone or in a pot or vase, depending on the look you want to achieve.
9. Create a Dedicated Plant Shelf
A dedicated plant shelf or two (or three!) is extremely trendy right now, and with good reason! A few small, narrow shelves filled with plants of different styles and colors with an eclectic mix of pots is a great alternative to artwork, adding dimension, texture, and warmth. This is a great idea for those who get bored of their decor easily, as you can trade out some of the plants, use different pots, or add trinkets and decorations for each season to transform your living room as often as you choose.
10. Try an Artificial Green Wall
Green walls are often found in luxurious public spaces, such as in hotels and restaurants, but they work just as well in the home. While you may not be brave enough to try a full artificial green wall (though definitely consider it if you have a large, modern home with floor-to-ceiling windows!) using a few individual panels in the place of artwork in your living room not only adds the lush foliage you’re looking for but also doesn’t take up floor or shelf space.
Each panel is usually between 30cm and 50cm square, so place 1 – 9 on an empty wall either horizontally or vertically in one or two rows, depending on the size of your wall. Most people stick to the same style for each panel, but if you plan to leave white space in between each panel, you could mix two different panel designs.
11. Fill Your Windowsill with Plants
Windows are often dusty places that house one statue or the things you’ve tidied but yet to put away! This is vital space you can fill with artificial plants to give you a greater sense of privacy, without blocking any of the light. The width of your windowsill will dictate what plants you use, but if you can, opt for a wide range of shapes and textures. An artificial snake plant beside a Boston fern may go against your instincts, but it looks incredible, especially on a bright day.
There are so many ways to transform your living room with artificial plants that it’s well worth experimenting with new things and seeing what works best for your space. Don’t forget that many of these tips will apply to other rooms in your home, such as your kitchen or bedroom. If you’re ready to start shopping to find the perfect plants for your living room transformation, click here.