Plants That Don’t Need Sun and Can Grow in Shade

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While some of our homes and gardens may have plenty of sunlight, there are times that you want to find a plant that is perfectly capable of growing in the shade. We’ve  compiled a list of 12 plants that can grow in the shade or in low light.  


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The Bromeliad is a tropical plant with vibrant colors. They have a unique tropical feel which makes them a beautiful house plant. Most species prefer bright indirect sunlight over direct light. If these plants are exposed to full sun it can damage the leaves. If you grow them indoors they thrive near (not directly in front of) windows. They can also be grown under a fluorescent light.


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Aglaonema (Also known as Chinese Evergreen) do not require sunlight. Actually, the specific sun needs will depend on the color of its leaves. The darker the leaves the less light it needs. If you have a variety with light-colored leaves (like a pink or orange) they prefer medium light. All varieties should not be placed in direct sunlight because it can scorch the leaves.

Maidenhair Fern

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The Maidenhair Fern can make a great addition to your garden as long as it is in a shady location. The plant will grow in partial to full shade indoors or outdoors.


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Dracaena is a common and easy to care for houseplant. Larger varieties have a tree-like look and do great as a floor decor. They grow best in bright, indirect light however, they can survive in low and medium light if needed. They also make great air-purifying plants and can filter out toxins in your home.


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Dieffenbachia is also called dumb canes because all parts of the plant are poisonous so be cautious around children and pets (it can cause swelling and other problems if eaten and itching if the sap touches the skin). These plants thrive between high filtered light and low depending on the species. Most species can survive on low filtered light but may not continue to grow depending on the variety.

English Ivy

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English Ivy is climbing plants that can grow on trellises, fences, and other locations. They prefer bright indirect light but will tolerate low light. In fact, the more light the ivy gets the more color will show through the leaves but direct sunlight will kill this plant.

Peace Lilies

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The Peace Lily is actually not a lily at all. The white “petal” is a leaf bract that grows around the yellow flower. They enjoy low to medium light but can also thrive using fluorescent lighting. The more light they receive the more likely they will produce white flowers. Peace lilies are beautiful plants that don’t need sun and, as a bonus, will also help purify the air around them.



The Pothos make great starter plants for anyone. They grow long vines and great for accenting walls and will help to create a tropical feel in a room. They prefer medium indoor light, but can also survive in low light. If they get too much direct sunlight it will cause their leaves to turn yellow and a lack of light will make them turn pale.

Staghorn Fern

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The Staghorn Fern is a little more complicated to care for but are a great low-light plant. They prefer bright, indirect or filtered light but cannot tolerate direct sun. Staghorn ferns can survive with artificial light and they are best placed wherever you get the most natural in-direct sunlight in your home. They prefer moist but not overly damp soil.

Monstera Plant

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The Monstera plant thrives with bright, indirect sunlight and in temperatures that are consistently within 70 to 75 degrees.  They will also add a tropical feel to your home with their vibrant deep green colors.

Weeping Fig Tree

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The Weeping Fig Tree is one of the most popular houseplants found in homes and offices. They grow best in a bright room and can have a little direct sunlight in the morning time. The plant does not like to be moved and may lose leaves if you do. It is best to pick a location with great lighting.

Sword Fern

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The Sword Fern is a beautiful plant that will add a nice green feel to your home. It likes humid climates so it thrives in bathrooms. They grow best in moist shady conditions so if you have them as a houseplant make sure to water.


We hope you’ve enjoyed this list of plants that don’t need sun to thrive.  If you’re looking for an easy plant to maintain, you may enjoy our post about snake plants or our how to garden article


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