You Can Actually Keep These 7 Plants INSIDE Your Shower

Bathroom with plants and plant in shower
credit: Stephen Paul

Today, houseplants in the bathroom are not just possible, but an actual trend. So why not take the next step and move some of those green-leafed beauties into your shower? They improve the bathroom air quality, absorb excess moisture, eliminate bacteria, and — best of all — transform the shower stall into a spa-like space of serenity and calm.

Here are some great plants to invite into your shower, as well as cool ideas for where to place them. Your best choices depend on the layout of your shower and the kind of light available.

1. Golden Pothos

Given the popularity of the golden pothos (Epipremnum aureum__), you might already have one in the house_._ With bright leaves trailing down vining stems, a pothos plant looks fabulous cascading from ceiling-hung baskets or pots positioned on high shower shelves. Pothos is an easy-care plant that doesn't like direct sun or dry soil, so it's a natural for placement in the shower.

2. Moth Orchids

Nothing brings the tropics into your shower like moth orchids (Phalaenopsis spp.) with their stunning, long-lasting curve of blossoms. These are rainforest epiphytes, easy-care plants that grow in tree bark in the wild. They will thrive in the damp, warm shower conditions as long as there is bright, filtered light. Try grouping a few containers on the back lip of the bathtub or tuck an orchid pot into the shower caddy. Let your orchids dry out well between drinks.

3. Peace Lilies

Peace lilies (Spathiphyllum wallisii) are lush, beautiful, and undemanding. Their bright green leaves and elegant ivory flower-bracts add energy to a room but calm it at the same time. They seem tailor-made for a shower space since they love low light and require little care other than the occasional watering. In a humid spot like the shower, you probably won't need to water your peace lilies at all.

4. Asparagus or Boston Ferns

Remember Jurassic Park? Ferns have shed their Victorian association and are ready for new, wild adventures, like an in-shower placement. The filtered light and humidity of a shower will remind your ferns of their prior lives in the forest and keep them green, growing and happy. Try Boston ferns (Nephrolepis exaltata) for lower-light showers or lacy asparagus ferns (Asparagus aethiopicus) if you've got a window or skylight.

5. English Ivy

NASA named this as one of the top air purifying plants, and that's a good start for a shower plant. But English ivy (Hedera helix), with its vining habit, is undeniably romantic in a bathroom. Hang a pot in the window and let the sunlight filter through its cascading leaves, creating pretty patterns of shade and light. Or if you have the space, give English ivy a pipe or post in the shower corner and watch it climb.

6. Chinese Evergreen

The popular Chinese evergreen (Aglaonema spp.) is an excellent, slow-growing foliage plant that loves a warm, humid location. You can select a variety that works with your shower space. Keep in mind this rule: the paler the Chinese evergreen leaves, the more light it needs. If your shower has a skylight or is positioned near a window offering bright, indirect sun, consider one of the pale variegated varieties like 'Silver Spear' (Aglaonema communatum). For low-light showers, go for the forest-green species plant.

7. Tropical Pitcher Plant

If your shower offers some light, you'll be hard-pressed to find a cooler plant to invite in than the tropical pitcher plant (Nepenthes spp.__) You've seen these amazing plants with the distinctive "pitchers" that attract insects to their doom. Pitcher plants love moist soil, diffused light, and high humidity, so a Nepenthes in the shower is a match made in heaven. These guys get big so pick a steady support like a built-in shower shelf.


Teo Spengler

Teo Spengler

From Alaska to California, from France's Basque Country to Mexico's Pacific Coast, Teo Spengler has dug the soil, planted seeds and helped trees, flowers and veggies thrive. A professional writer and consummate gardener, Spengler has written about home and garden for Gardening Know How, San Francisco Chronicle, Gardening Guide and Go Banking Rates. She earned a BA from U.C. Santa Cruz, a law degree from U.C. Berkeley's Boalt Hall, and an MA and MFA from San Francisco State. She currently divides her life between San Francisco and southwestern France.