St Valentine’s Day brings a welcome splash of colour to a winter’s day and it is amazing how a room can be equally transformed by the addition of a stunning red indoor plant. Indoor plants featuring either red foliage or flowers can really make a visual impact and can effortlessly brighten your office, reception area or restaurant.
Red indoor plants are a great choice
Just as the red-leaved poinsettia is associated with Christmas every year, red indoor plants can bring warmth and interest to a room and are a great way to brighten a dull corner. Red leaved plants look stylish when teamed with one of this season’s trending flower pots, either in plain dark ceramic, or better still, a metallic or natural wood finish.
In Feng Shui, red is considered a very important colour for businesses. It is a fire colour that represents energy and creativity, but importantly, it also attracts money. In Chinese businesses, you will often see a red lantern hanging in the ‘wealth corner’ of the room. The colour red is also known to stimulate the appetite so is often used in restaurants. With so much good fortune promised, why not add a splash of red to your work space with a red indoor plant?
Choose a plant with red foliage!
Not only do these red indoor plants look dramatic, they are surprisingly good tempered. This is a huge bonus if there is the chance that they might not get regularly watered! There are more than a dozen different types of red-leaved to choose from. https://gardenerspath.com/plants/houseplants/colorful-winter/ gives you some colourful inspiration and any of these colourful plants could well help energise your work space.
Looking for a good-tempered foliage plant? Aglaonema can easily grow a metre high and almost as wide and really looks good as its numerous leaves have green uppers, but underneath are red and each leaf is also edged in red. This plant definitely looks great, but a word of caution, its leaves can cause itchy skin- so water with care!
There are various members of the coleus family to choose and they all have red, magenta or pink leaves. Watch out for the variety ‘chocolate covered cherry’ as it its leaves are pinky red and dark burgundy with bright green edges. Coleus grow to an impressive size quite quickly and are the perfect choice if you have a sunny spot to fill. The only point to remember is this plant likes moist soil- so it’s important not to let the soil dry out.
Caladium ‘Red Flash’
This red indoor plant really is really eye-catching and easily grows to more than a metre in height – and almost as wide! It has vibrant heart-shaped leaves that have earned it the nickname – ‘Angel Wings’. The leaves are edged in green with large red veins and spots. It too is a plant that does not like its soil to dry out.
Flamingo Lily (Anthurium andraenum)
The distinctive Flamingo Lily has unusual bracts that are red or white in colour with a large golden stamen. The bracts contrast perfectly with the plant’s shiny heart-shaped leaves. In a recent NASA Clean Air Study, this indoor plant was found to be effective at removing pollutants from the air.
Ti Plant (Cordyline fruticosa)
This attractive leafy plant has leaves that are dark red and green, with a lighter red underside. What adds to its good looks is that new leaves are pink in colour and darken much later
Or opt for a flowering red indoor plant
When asked to name a red flowering indoor plant, many will think of the winter favourites such as the Christmas Cactus or Amaryllis with its lofty stem and huge trumpet flowers. There are many others available and these can be fun to watch as they develop. https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/houseplants/ hpgen/what-houseplants-have-red-flowers.htm
Red African Violets (Saintopaulia ionanthea)
Everyone knows the African Violet with its violet flowers. Did you know that this popular indoor plant can be found with red flowers too? African Violets are attractive and compact in size and shape, so are ideal for a work desk or grouped along a windowsill in matching ceramic pots .
Brazilian Fireworks. (Porphyrocoma pohliana)
If you want a dramatic plant, this one is like a never-ending firework display! It has green leaves with silver markings. In late spring it produces deep red flower bracts and these develop lavender flowers. As these fade, the plant produces numerous black seeds which are easy to propagate.
Cyclamen (Cyclamen persicum)
At this time of year, cyclamens are always popular. With their silver patterned foliage, they look really good and as their pretty flowers unfurl, they look spectacular. Available in a variety of colours, cyclamen are a stunning red indoor plant and their compact shape makes them ideal for desks, reception counters and even as the perfect splash of colour on the counter in a ladies’ toilet. The big tip is to keep the soil moist and to water the plant by standing it in a dish of water to avoid getting any on its leaves or stem.
Crown of Thorns
If you look after this indoor succulent well, you will be rewarded with hundreds of small red flowers all year through! This plant has sharp spines. An old legend tells it was used for the ‘crown of thorns’ at Christ’s Crucifixion. This plant has long leathery leaves and loves plenty of direct light – but not sunlight.
Hibiscus – the elegant red indoor plant
These dramatic plants are available with red or white bract. The bracts contrast perfectly with the shiny heart-shaped leaves. In a recent NASA Clean Air Study, this plant starred as an effective cleaner of pollutants in the air. The lily thrives in a spot with bright light but with no direct sunlight.
You may not know the name, but you will definitely recognise this dramatic plant with its long narrow green leaves and large central scarlet flower. This plant is from South America so loves to be in a bright position – away from direct sunlight. It is fun to water as you pour the water into the funnel in the centre of the flower. Be warned though, this is a fussy plant and prefers filtered water!
….And a clever ‘trick of the trade’
Look closely at the stunning plant arrangements in some offices, reception areas and restaurants and you will find they are comprised of beautiful faux plants. A very clever trick is to leave a spot at the front of the arrangement where a live seasonal plant can be added. For example, a red cyclamen would look perfect in the arrangement right now, but could be easily replaced by some indoor daffodils for Easter, miniature roses in the summer etc. How clever is that!