I love plants, and try to fill my living and working space with as many plants as is humanly possible. I find being surrounded by real, live greenery to be relaxing and mentally soothing. It’s no wonder, because studies have found that colourful indoor plants will not only brighten up any dreary space, but they can also improve your mood.

It’s well known that colour can affect our moods, and a 2015 study found that houseplants may reduce psychological and physiological stress. So if you are looking for a way to add a pop of colour to your home, and lift your mood at the same time, consider adding one of these colourful, mood-boosting houseplants to your home. 

Here are just five (there are many) of my favourite colourful plants that you should consider getting. While these plants can live comfortably indoors, you need to be sure to follow the care instructions listed below, to ensure that the are happy.

Tradescantia Blushing Bride

Tradescantia x andersoniana ‘Blushing Bride’ is a trailing, perennial with pink and white variegated leaves that displays three-petaled, white flowers tinged with lilac pink. The leaves turn green when they mature, so if you might want to prune it frequently to encourage new pinkish/white leaf growth.

While I keep my other two tradescantia beside a sunny window (which they totally love), the Blushing Bride requires bright, but not direct sun light, or the leaves will turn green faster. This plant likes well draining soil, so I would suggest a good potting mix, with some added perlite and coconut coir and peat for added drainage. Water when you feel that the soil is getting dry, but do try to keep the soil damp, but not soggy.

Begonia Rex

Rex begonias are absolutely beautiful plants. They come in a variety of leaf colours, textures and patterns, and do well indoors, in bright indirect light. Some direct sun is okay for short times, especially if it is from an eastern window that has morning sun, which is gentler. For periods of the year where the sun is strongest, or if you live in an area that has strong sun, you will want to avoid too much direct sun.

These plants like to stay damp, and not dry out completely, but they hate having their roots sitting in water, so be sure to use well draining soil, with some compost material, to help retain moisture. Always water at the base of the plant, as they are susceptible to leaf rot and spots if the leaves get damp.

Put the plant on a regular watering schedule. The soil should be kept moist, but not wet or soggy. If soil is dry to the touch, the plant needs water. If it is wet, it has received too much. Too much water can cause root rot and kill the begonia. We suggest watering over a sink or bowl so the excess water can drain out.

Be sure to feed the plant a balanced houseplant fertiliser once a month and prune regularly, removing any blooms that are faded or dead. Leaving deadheads on the plant will cause it to spend its energy trying to revive them, instead of focusing its energy on keeping the rest of the plant healthy.

Caladium Thai Beauty

The leaves of this plant reminds me of a delicate batik print on silk fabric. This stunning hybrid was made especially on the demand of The Royal Family. It was first cultivated in Thailand and is native to South America. The Caladium “Thai Beauty” grows best in dappled light or shade and does well in temperatures over 65 degrees Fahrenheit (around 18°C), it cannot tolerate frost or very dry environments, and should be watered around once a week, ensuring the soil remains moist.

This plant cannot survive low humidity. It needs high moisture to thrive. If the humidity in its surroundings falls below 40%, this plant can actually lose its beautiful colouration.

Calathea

Calathea is a genus of neotropical rhizomatous herbaceous perennial plants that are known for the unique patterned foliage. They are also pet safe, making them great plants for anyone that shares a space with pets, children and anyone curious enough to stick a leaf in their mouth.

Part of the ‘prayer plant’ family, Marantaceae, the leaves of the plant moves up at nighttime and lowers in the daytime in accordance to a circadian rhythm.

Calatheas thrive in medium to bright indirect light, but can tolerate low indirect light, and like their soil to be moist, but not wet, as too much water can result in root rot. Although a finicky plant, the Calathea is absolutely stunning. There are 60 varieties, patterns and colours to choose from, and the plant does really well indoors, and even flowers, which is truly a treat!

Coleus

This plant has some of the most stunningly bright and colourful foliage I have ever seen. Think of combinations of bright greens, yellows, pinks, reds, maroons, etc. Coleus also have a wide variety of leaf sizes and overall shapes, and are great plants for adding a dramatic pop of colour to a space.

Personally, I have found it easier to keep my coleus healthy and happy outdoors, in direct sunlight, rather than in my house, but online resources I have read say that the plant grows equally well indoors.

The plant needs to be kept moist or its leaves start to droop. especially newly planted coleus. The plant produces lovely spiked flowers usually during the summer months. It’s easy plant to keep and propagate and will definitely liven up your space.

We hope you have found this article helpful. Please share what colourful plants you love, and have found to be easy to care for and keep.