Shade-Tolerant House Plants

House plants are those grown indoors. Although indoor plants are often protected from many pests, diseases and problems that outdoor plants sometimes yield to, house plants are susceptible to a few problems of their own. Perhaps the most common problem for indoor plants is lack of sunlight. Many plants will not flourish under conditions of poor indoor lighting, but some do thrive in indoor shade.

Chinese Evergreen

Chinese evergreen, a popular house plant, has oblong leaves that vary in color from green to gray and silver, and some varieties are variegated. Most prized for their foliage, Chinese evergreens can reach 3 feet in height and width. Plant them in moist, but not wet, potting soil. There is no need to place these plants in a sunny spot; Chinese evergreens can withstand indoor shade better than many other tropical house plants, and too much sunlight can cause leaf fade. Keep these house plants warm, as cold temperatures and heavy sunlight can damage them. Water them regularly at the base and avoid overhead misting, which can cause spotting on the leaves. Do not prune Chinese evergreen.

False Aralia

False aralia plants start out with copper-colored foliage that changes to grayish-green or purplish-red at maturity. The foliage is made up of narrow, serrated leaflets with many stems. False aralia can reach 6 feet in height. According to the Charlotte County Cooperative Extension Service, the foliage of false aralia is comprised of sets of 10 leaflets that grow broader as they mature. Place false aralia near a window or other location of light shade with some sunlight. Avoid placing these plants where they will receive direct afternoon sunlight. Allow the soil to dry out a bit between watering and fertilize regularly.

Cast Iron Plant

As the name implies, cast iron plants are robust and resilient house plants. They are easy-to-grow, versatile plants that tolerate both full sunlight and indoor shade. The foliage of these plants range and may be dark green or variegated. They can reach 2 feet tall and wide. Plant cast iron plants in well-drained soil and water them with warm water. Fertilize monthly, or treat with a slow-release fertilizer annually. Prune old leaves and keep the foliage wiped clean. A moist cloth will do the trick.

Keywords: shade tolerant plants, house plants, shade house plants

About this Author

Kelli Bingham is a freelance writer with nearly a decade of experience in the field. Her works have been published in publications including eHow. She is currently pursuing a degree in business.