10 Most Popular Indoor Trees

Indoor Tropical Oasis

Illustration depicting types of indoor trees

The Spruce / Ashley Deleon Nicole

An indoor tree serves the same function in a room as a piece of furniture: It serves as an anchor and it sets a mood in your room. Trees are catching up to houseplants in popularity due to the structural element they add to living spaces, as well as the air-cleaning qualities they possess. When you choose an indoor tree, you must consider the light needs of the tree, how much watering it will require, and its mature size. These 10 trees are the most popular due to their low maintenance needs, compact size, and arresting visual appeal

  • 01 of 10

    Fiddle Leaf Fig (Ficus lyrata)

    Indoor fiddle leaf fig

     

    Bogdan Kurylo / Getty Images 

    The fiddle leaf fig hails from the jungle, so a bright bathroom would be the ideal spot for your tree. However, a living room location will also work if you protect the tree from drafts and give it enough light and humidity. A summer vacation outdoors will do wonders for the fiddle leaf fig and many other indoor trees, so give it a temporary home as a patio plant for the month of June.

    • Light: Bright, filtered light
    • Water: Keep steadily moist
    • Temperature: Between 60 and 80 F
  • 02 of 10

    Citrus (Citrus family)

    Potted lemon tree

     

    cunfek / Getty Images

    The bewitching scent of an orange or lemon tree in bloom is superior to any room freshening spray you will ever encounter. Of all the popular indoor trees, citrus trees are the most demanding. They want more of everything: water, sunlight, humidity, and fertilizer. So buy a humidity tray, sneak it outdoors when you can, and start looking up lemon pound cake recipes.

    • Light: Full sun
    • Water: Moist but not wet
    • Temperature: Between 50 and 80 F
  • 03 of 10

    Weeping Fig (Ficus benjamina)

    Ficus benjamina
    Sian Irvine/ Dorling Kindersley/ Getty Images

    Also known as ficus trees, weeping figs are beloved for their rich green color and easy-to-care-for way. A well-lit room goes a long way towards preventing the most common complaint about the weeping fig, which is leaf drop. A room with a large picture window, skylight, or south-facing window is most desirable. Plant your weeping fig in well-drained soil, and only water when the soil surface is dry. 

    • Light: Plenty of indirect light
    • Water: Keep soil steadily moist but not wet
    • Temperature: Between 65 and 85 F
  • 04 of 10

    Rubber Tree (Ficus elastica)

    Rubber tree in living room

    Oscar Wong / Getty Images

    Native to India, rubber trees produce large, glossy leaves in a dark green hue that pops against pale paint colors. Like most tropical trees, rubber trees like moderate temperatures, a humid environment, and good air circulation without drafts. An optional step for the pampered plant is a monthly leaf wiping session with a damp cloth to remove dust. Fertilize your rubber tree every two weeks during periods of active growth to achieve maximum leaf size. 

    • Light: Bright, filtered light
    • Water: Keep soil steadily moist but not wet
    • Temperature: Between 50 and 80 F
    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Banana Tree (Musa spp.)

    Banana Tree
    DEA/C.DANI/Getty Images

    Giant leaf lovers should look no further than an indoor banana tree to satisfy a desire for lush foliage. Some banana trees like the Cavendish produce fruit, while others like the Musa basjoo will not. When shopping for a banana tree, seek out dwarf cultivars only. "Dwarf" is a relative term in the banana world; trees may still grow up to ten feet tall. Filtered light and regular fertilizing help these fast-growing trees reach their potential. If leaves start to brown or curl, check for mites, which are notorious banana pests. 

    • Light: Full sun
    • Water: 1 or 2 inches of water weekly
    • Temperature: Between 75 and 95 F
  • 06 of 10

    Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla)

    Norfolk Island Pine grown indoors
    Brownpau/ Flickr / CCBY2.0

    Around the winter holidays, small potted Norfolk Island pine trees are available as "indoor Christmas trees," but these long-lived indoor trees look great at any time of year. Although a slow-growing tree, be aware that these things can grow to 100 feet outdoors, and there is not a dwarf variety on the market. An indoor tree will grow about two feet each year, so plan and plant accordingly. Bright light, moderate watering, and an occasional misting will keep your pine happy. 

    • Light: Full sun; can tolerate shade
    • Water: Let the soil dry between waterings
    • Temperature: Between 65 and 70 F (can tolerate cooler weather briefly)
  • 07 of 10

    Umbrella Tree (Schefflera)

    Umbrella tree plant

     

    PhotoAllel / Getty Images

    The umbrella tree is a fine choice for homes with little direct sunlight or north-facing windows. The trees require little care, but they are attractive to pests like mites and scale, so watch out for hitchhikers when you bring the tree indoors. Umbrella trees like constant moisture, but do not leave them sitting in a tray of stagnant water. 

    • Light: Bright, indirect light
    • Water: Weekly during the growing season; less at other times
    • Temperature: Above 60 F
  • 08 of 10

    Yucca (Yucca)

    Spineless Yucca Tree

    Sian Irvine / Getty Images

    Yucca trees, also called yucca stick or spineless yucca, offer a striking live accent in contemporary homes. The yucca tree features a solid trunk with leathery strap-like leaves emerging from the top. Groups of three in a pot with staggered heights look very attractive. Give your yucca tree as much sun as you are able to provide, and do not be afraid to cut the plant in half if it outgrows its space. 

    • Light: Full or bright, indirect sun
    • Water: Regularly but with excellent drainage
    • Temperature: Between 35 and 95 F
    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Jade (Crassula ovata)

    Jade plant in windowsill

     

    Andrey Nikitin / Getty Images

    The jade tree is probably the lowest care indoor tree on this list. The sculptural look of the succulent leaves and trunk combine with the feng shui vibe of this plant to keep it on the top ten list for beginners. Jade trees make great bonsai specimens, just water it every few weeks and keep it in a sunny window. 

    • Light: Four or more hours of direct sunlight daily
    • Water: Keep moist in spring and summer; water monthly in winter
    • Temperature: Between 50 and 70 F (can tolerate cooler weather in winter)
  • 10 of 10

    Money Tree (Pachira aquatica, P. glabra)

    Money tree

     

    Socha / Getty Images

    The spindly trunk of the money tree lends it to braiding, and that is how many of these trees are sold. The braids will grow with the tree over time, hardening and becoming woody as it matures. In spite of its Latin name, Pachira aquatica, the money tree does not like excessive watering and will rot if left in standing water. Allow the soil to dry between waterings and keep it in filtered bright light. 

    • Light: Filtered bright light
    • Water: Allow drying between waterings
    • Temperature: Between 28 and 100 F