19 Artificial Potted Plant Ideas & Ways to Style Them
Artificial plants are no longer the stiff, obviously-plastic plants they were decades ago – today, they are barely distinguishable from the real thing. Most people have to actually touch (or even try to press a nail into!) a leaf before they are sure the plant is artificial. Natural elements are the best way to bring life to a space, but that doesn’t mean the plants actually have to be alive.
Watering plants, buying new flowers, and managing explosive growth (or worse, constantly dying plants) isn’t the only way to bring greenery into your home. Artificial plants are versatile, cost-effective, and easier than ever to style and maintain.
To help you choose and style your new artificial plants, here are 19 artificial potted plant ideas and tips to style them in your home.
19 Artificial Potted Plant Ideas
1. Use a Large Potted Plant on a Dresser or Side Table
Large potted plants can be a show-stopper on dressers and side tables, when paired with the right other accessories. Ideally, you want the height of the plant to be at least twice as tall and wide as the vase or planter. (You can see a great illustration of what this should look like here.) Pair with art and picture frames either slightly smaller than the height of the plant or slightly taller. Arrange other decorations and things of interest, such as books, statues, and candles, on the other side of the dresser to balance the look.
2. Arrange Individual Stems Naturally
If you order individual stems, arrange them carefully so they look like a real plant. Live plants will often grow toward the light source (such as a window), which isn’t very aesthetically pleasing – the natural element you want to emulate is the leaves or flowers pointing in all different directions. You can overlook this step if you are placing your plant close to a wall (that’s one of the biggest benefits of using artificial plants) but try to have stems that face different directions and are different heights.
3. Add Artificial Moss to the Base
Adding a little artificial moss around the base of your artificial potted plants helps give an even more natural finish and a little softness to the look.
4. Use Potted Plants as a Centrepiece
Small potted artificial plants such as succulents and cacti are perfect for grouping together as a centrepiece for dining tables.
5. Artificial Potted Plants are Perfect for Bathrooms
Artificial potted orchids and other artificial potted plants are perfect for bringing some softer and more natural shapes to the bathroom, which is often a particularly difficult place to have live plants. Artificial plants aren’t bothered by the significant temperature and humidity swings, and won’t wilt with a little steam, either. If you have the space, don’t be afraid to use something larger - artificial bamboo plants or leafy artificial fig trees work just as well as smaller artificial plants.
6. Use Potted Plants in Empty Corners
Don’t try to fill every corner with furniture - if you look at homes designed by professional interior designers, they often float furniture in the middle of the room or in the middle of walls. When you shove large, bulky or square furniture into the corners of the room, it can actually make the room look smaller and less luxurious. Instead, pull your sofa away from the wall, pull your dressers into the middle of the wall, and fill the corners with decorative pieces, such as potted plants. You can’t go wrong with one large plant, three of varying sizes, or a single artificial potted plant on a decorative table or plant stand.
7. Don’t be Afraid to be Adventurous
When you look for inspiration for house plants in the home, you’ll often see the same few variations used again and again. This is because looking after live plants can be challenging, so most people will use the same hardy plants. When you choose artificial plants, you don’t have to stick to what’s “easy”, so you can use potted plants that are unexpected. For example, a potted artificial lemon tree as the focal point at the end of a long hallway can be a high-end surprise reminiscent of the luxury designs you find in the pages of magazines.
8. Hang Your Potted Plants
Macrame and similar fabric planters are huge right now for homes that are bracing a little Bohemian style, and this can work equally well (if not better) for artificial plants as it does for live plants. Hang them in kitchen windows, dark hallways, bedrooms, and anywhere else you want!
9. Place Them in Baskets
Another big trend is using baskets as planters - the problem is this is incredibly impractical for live plants, as the water can rot the basket itself, which will be a huge problem if it goes unnoticed, especially on carpet. However, it works incredibly well with artificial potted plants of all sizes, so you can definitely embrace this trend.
10. Use Artificial Ferns and Palm Plants for a Relaxed Vibe
You’ll notice once you start searching for your new artificial friends that certain leaf shapes evoke different feelings, especially when paired with the right pot. If you want an effortless, cool, relaxed feel in your home, opt for larger, loose-leafed styles, such as artificial palms, grasses, and ferns. These work well for relaxed modern, contemporary, and mid-century modern interiors.
11. If You Want That Bohemian Look, More is More
If you like that bohemian look, you really can’t overdo it with your artificial potted plants. You’re free to choose whatever style you like but try to mix your shapes and textures. For example, an artificial aloe vera would contrast well with a broad-leafed plant but wouldn’t necessarily work well next to an artificial snake plant, for example, as they both have tall, spikey leaves.
12. Use Contrasting or Complementary Pots
When you’re choosing the pot for your plant, first choose by your interior decor style and then by colour, according to the plant itself. If your interior uses a relaxed colour palette, sticking with neutrals and muted colours works well, but if you have a brighter colour palette, consider if you want your plants to be a focal point or not. If so, using a brighter pink pot, for example, will contrast with deep greens of many plants. The same goes for turquoise or gold.
13. Use Artificial Succulents for Pops of Colour
Unless you’re going for a minimalist look, then the final touches of a new room are always those little trinkets and points of interest, and there are only so many books, trinkets, and scented candles you can use before the space starts to look cluttered. To add a different colour, shape, and texture to these areas, use a small artificial succulent. Succulents come in all shapes and colours, so there will always be a suitable artificial succulent for that area that's just “missing something”.
14. Use Artificial Snake Plants in Narrow Areas
Plants like artificial snake plants are great for narrow areas where you’re looking for something tall, as they won’t bush out and take up valuable horizontal space. They work particularly well in a plant stand, but can work equally well on the floor provided they’re tall enough. Another reason why they’re a great choice is their shape means you won’t have to dust the leaves as frequently as some of your other artificial potted plants.
15. Use a Statement Plant in the Corner of Your Dining Room
If you have even a moderately sized dining room, a statement plant in the corner creates a focal point and volume in a room that can otherwise feel quite boxy and narrow. All too often the table is in the middle of the room with a single side-table against the wall, and little else.
To break up the angular shapes, use an oval or circular rug under the dining table and use a large artificial potted plant in the corner, or even in two corners if you have the space. Artificial banana plants, large palm plants, artificial lemon trees, and artificial topiary all work well, you just need to choose according to the style of the room. Don’t be afraid to backlight them or weave some delicate fairy lights between the leaves - it creates a wonderful atmosphere when it gets dark.
16. Try an Artificial Bay Tree
Bay trees are (usually) neatly trimmed “balls” of foliage on the top of a tall, straight stem, which gives them a clean, classy look. If you’re looking for a modern but traditional style for your artificial potted plant, a bay tree is a good choice. Place them in your kitchen if you have space, in orangeries and conservatories, and they also look incredible outside framing the front door or out on the patio.
17. Use Artificial Lavender on the Kitchen Windowsill
If your kitchen windowsill sways between being a place you put random objects that should be elsewhere and full of live herbs that die within a few days, you’re not alone! Buying fresh herbs for recipes is delicious, but the plants seem to die within a few days.
Consider filling the middle of your kitchen window with 1-3 artificial lavender plants in metal buckets or planters, as this brings a country home feel to even the most urban of kitchen spaces, without looking out of place. You can still continue to buy fresh herbs if you want to, but the lavender will ensure you don’t end up with a bare windowsill or spend more on herbs every week just to have something to put there, only to have it wilt and die again.
18. Fill Out-of-Reach Shelving with Artificial Potted Plants
We’ve all got those spaces high-up that just collect dust – they are just a fraction too far out of reach to be practical without at least a footstool every time you want to get something down. This may be a high shelf, the top of a wardrobe, the top of your kitchen cabinets, or even an open space above an interesting architectural feature in your home. Instead of leaving them empty, consider filling them with potted plants instead. This is a great way to bring more greenery into a space with little floor space (such as a kitchen) and draws the eye higher to make the room feel bigger.
Try choosing an odd number of potted plants for the space, as that tends to look more intentional than an even number, unless you use them as bookends or similar for other things in that space. Best of all, unlike real plants, you will only have to get up there once every few weeks or so to dust them down, rather than every few days to water them.
19. Don’t Let Any Space Go to Waste
Do you have a guest bathroom with a walk-in shower that doesn’t often get used? If so, you can wow your going-home-at-the-end-of-the-night guests by placing various sizes of artificial potted plants in the shower bay. It brings a lot of life to a bathroom that often feels a little bare and utilitarian - see the above photo if you need some visual inspiration for this one! You can use this same idea for other underutilised areas of your home.
The quality of artificial plants is now so good and there are now so many different variations in height, style, and species, that you really won’t be short of ideas on what to do in your home. The great thing about artificial plants is you can constantly mix up your collection, try new and different shapes with the seasons, and once you’ve got a good collection, “shop” the artificial plants you’re storing to give them new life in a different spot, which is definitely not something you can do with live plants! Feeling inspired? Shop our collection here.