Exotic indoor plants: unsual plants for your home


I am a student of agricultural sciences and a real country kid. At home, I love tending my small vegetable garden and spending time out in nature. When not outdoors, I love to write. Beyond gardening and writing, however, I am particularly passionate about wildlife.

Favourite fruit: currants and raspberries
Favourite vegetables: salsify, savoy cabbage and potatoes

In almost every apartment and office can be found the same plants. We are adding variety with these exotic indoor plants.

An array of exotic indoor plants
Exotic houseplants bring variety into your home [Photo: Sasitorn Chaimanon/ Shutterstock.com]

Rubber tree (Ficus elastica), snake plant (Sansevieria) and peace lily (Spathiphyllum) – in almost every household you can find one of these popular houseplants. Although these have certainly proven to be great roommates, many lack variety. How about, for example, an exotic plant that brings a touch of the South Seas into the home or exudes the dangerous beauty of the rainforest? Fortunately, there are also houseplants that meet exactly these requirements. Here are ten exotic indoor plants that bring variety to an otherwise monotonous selection of houseplants.

1. Baobab

The baobab (Adansonia), also called Baobab, is quite the exotic indoor plant in our latitudes so far. No wonder, after all, the trees grow up to 30 metres high in their African homeland, making them completely unsuitable for an apartment. If, on the other hand, the baobab is planted in a pot, it remains much smaller and reaches a maximum height of one and a half metres. Especially its striking growth habit and dark green, leathery leaves make the baobab tree a real eye-catcher. At the same time, the baobab is extremely low-maintenance and adaptable, so it can tolerate even great neglect. If, however, the baobab is cared for well, it can develop its beautiful filigree flowers even in our latitudes.

A baobab plant in a pot
The baobab is still rather unknown as an indoor plant in our country [Photo: SAndrej Jakubik/ Shutterstock.com]

2. Orchid

Orchids (Orchidaceae), despite their demanding care, are welcome guests in any home. No wonder, after all, the beautiful flowers bring exotic flair directly from their native rainforests into your own four walls. Especially its great flowers make the orchid an ornament for any home and attract all eyes. But the variety of the orchid is also one of the reasons why the plant is so popular: there are an estimated 30,000 orchid species, which differ in colour and shape. So, this selection should leave nothing to be desired.

A purple orchid
The orchid impresses with its great flowers [Photo: SVladimir_Vinogradov/ Shutterstock.com]

3. Pineapple

When one thinks of South Seas beaches and exoticism, the pineapple (Ananas comosus) cannot be missing, of course. The queen of tropical fruits has always delighted people with its sweet and sour taste and can be found in almost every supermarket. But did you know that the pineapple also makes a great ornamental plant? With its dense rosette-shaped leaf crown, the plant forms a decorative eye-catcher. It also rewards the owner (with good care) with a delicious fruit every now and then.

A pineapple growing on the plant
The pineapple is also suitable as an ornamental plant [Photo: SBogutskaya/ Shutterstock.com]

4. Alocasia

The fact that leaves do not always have to be around and green is more than impressively proven by the Alocasia. With its elongated, wavy leaves, the Alocasia, which is also called arrowroot, is a great eye-catcher that can easily keep up with flowering houseplants in terms of beauty. Although the Alocasia is still a real rarity among houseplants, but this is certainly not due to its care: in fact, the tropical plant is relatively robust and easy to care for.

Leaves of the Alocasia plant
With its arrow-shaped leaves, the Alocasia is a real eye-catcher [Photo: SYoung Swee Ming/ Shutterstock.com]

5. Coconut palm

When it comes to exotic indoor plants, there is probably no getting around the coconut palm (Cocos nucifera): the epitome of a tropical plant, it creates a vacation atmosphere in any room. With their straight, unbranched growth and mop of feathery leaves, these majestic houseplants seem to have come straight from the South Seas to the living room. But even here they feel good with the right care: plenty of light, temperatures above 22 °C and enough water are basic requirements for the plant to thrive. For this, the coconut palm provides a decorative eye-catcher that attracts all eyes.

Coconut palm plant in a pot
The coconut palm is the epitome of a tropical plant [Photo: SDasha Petrenko/ Shutterstock.com]

Tip: For houseplants to grow well, they should be supplied with nutrients regularly. A simple and quick way is to apply a liquid fertiliser through the irrigation water. Our Plantura Liquid Houseplant Food strengthens the roots of plants in the process and comes in a sustainable package.

Liquid Houseplant Food, 800ml
Liquid Houseplant Food, 800ml
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  • Perfect for a wide variety of houseplants & foliage plants
  • Liquid fertiliser for robust plants & healthy growth
  • Quick & easy application - child & pet friendly

6. String of hearts

If there were a Rapunzel in the plant world, it would definitely be the string of hearts (Ceropegia woodii). The hanging plant forms thin shoots up to one metre long, with decorative heart-shaped leaves that have an impressive white-silver grain. If the plant then also forms a multitude of small flowers that remotely resemble lanterns, it becomes a great feast for the eyes. With its long shoots, the string of hearts is predestined for a hanging plant, but it can also be arranged wonderfully in tall pots or can twine artfully around trellises.

Hearts on a string plant in a pot
The leaves of the hearts on a string plant look like little hearts [Photo: Spanattar/ Shutterstock.com]

7. Footstool palm

Sun, beach, and palm trees – these are the ingredients for a perfect vacation. We cannot guarantee sun and beach, but with the footstool palm (Livistona rotundifolia) you can at least put the appropriate decoration in your living room. This exotic houseplant shines with its circular pinnate leaves perched on slender petioles. If you offer the umbrella palm a bright, sunny place and sufficient care, it also thrives here. However, you should not expect too much because the plant is probably one of the slowest growing houseplants.

The Livistona rotundifolia plant in a pot on a windowsill
The round-leaved umbrella palm adds a holiday atmosphere to any home [Photo: SAfrica Studio/ Shutterstock.com]

8. Venus flytrap

Hardly any carnivorous plant is probably as famous as the venus flytrap (Dionea muscipula). The unusual exotic plant has fascinated people since time immemorial and forms the basis for many a horror story. But do not worry – the Venus flytrap cannot eat much more than a small insect. In fact, the plant is even a great roommate because it not only looks decorative, but is also the ideal mosquito catcher. The only thing you should not do is annoy the plant: since each trap flap usually only snaps shut six times before it dies, you should avoid irritating the plant as much as possible in order to get something out of it for a long time.

Venus flytrap plant in a pot
The Venus flytrap is probably the most famous carnivorous plant [Photo: SRobert Anaya Jr/ Shutterstock.com]

9. Porcelain flower

The name says it all: the flowers of the porcelain flower (Hoya carnosa) are so even and pretty that one might think they were painted on porcelain. Only the pleasant scent of the plant reveals that this is actually a real, extremely decorative houseplant. With its rapid and climbing growth, the porcelain flower is particularly suitable for around arches and trellises, where it is a great eye-catcher even without flowers. However, the real highlight are the white to pink flowers that appear from spring. Until autumn, these then provide a magical atmosphere.

Pink wax plant blossoms
The flowers of th wax plant are as even as porcelain [Photo: TOM ROAD/ Shutterstock.com]

10. Tillandsia

Plants that do not need soil? Such a thing actually exists! The tillandsias (Tillandsia) do not need any planting substrate and are therefore colloquially also often called air plants. In South America, tillandsias grow as so-called perching plants on large trees or shrubs, where they hold on with their roots. Nutrient and water uptake, on the other hand, takes place through the leaves, making soil superfluous. This special property also ensures that tillandsias can be wonderfully used as decoration: whether as living mural, hanging plant or table decoration, the tillandsias always form a fascinating sight.

Hanging air plant
Air plants do not need soil and are therefore perfect for decorating [Photo: SLuoxi/ Shutterstock.com]

Want to learn more about special plants for the home? Here you can find our favourite flowering houseplants.