12 Varieties of Fast Growing Indoor Plants

Houseplants are a fantastic way to bring life and nature into your home and can easily brighten up an otherwise bland space. They are also a great way to help purify the air and boost oxygen levels. 

It can take patience and persistence when waiting for a houseplant to reach its full potential. Luckily, there are plenty of fast growing indoor plants that will quickly transform your living space in no time. 

Whether you want a huge statement evergreen, a dainty flowering individual or anything in between, there is sure to be a plant on this list for you. In this article, I’ll discuss 12 of my favorite fast-growing houseplants and how to care for them. 

Types of Fast Growing Indoor Plants

The type of houseplant you pick can alter the style of a room, so it’s worth giving consideration upfront to the look you want to go for. To help you decide, I have categorized the plants in my list based on their appearance and growing habits or characteristics. 

Evergreens

Evergreens are a popular choice for houseplants as they never lose their leaves, so they are a great way to inject life into your home all year. 

There are a variety of options to choose from when it comes to evergreen houseplants. Many species produce flowers whilst others boast uniquely patterned or textured foliage. 

Flowering

If your aim is to add colours, scents and floral designs to your home, flowering houseplants are the way to go. 

Unlike cut flowers, flowering plants hold the potential to bloom for longer periods. Their vibrant blooms contrast against green foliage to create charm, elegance and interest. 

Trailing

Since many plants grow in an upright fashion, trailing or hanging plants are a good way to introduce depth and dimension. 

Whether you choose to suspend them from hanging baskets or drape them over the edge of shelves or containers, trailing houseplants are a good choice for areas that have limited floor or surface space. 

Large

To transform your home into an indoor jungle or to fill a bare or sparse corner, then large houseplants are the best approach. 

Whether you opt for a species with long stems and large leaves, a profusion of foliage or even a small tree, you are bound to create a statement and talking point for your room.   

Compact

Even with limited indoor space, there are plenty of small houseplant varieties to choose from. Remember that keeping your plants small may require regular pruning to keep them to your desired size.

If you are new to indoor growing then cacti and succulents are a good place to start as they are both compact and low-maintenance. 

12 Varieties of Fast-Growing Indoor Plants 

With the wonderful array of fast-growing houseplants that exist, it can be tricky to know what species is best for you. 

Here in this article, you will find a range of species, along with care tips to help you pick the perfect plant. 

1. Purple Passion

Scientific Name: Gynura aurantiaca 

Purple Passion
Credit: David J. Stang by CC: 4.0
  • Ideal Position: Partial shade
  • Difficulty: Relatively low maintenance 
  • Toxicity: Non-toxic 
  • USDA Zones: 10 to 12
  • Growth Rate: 5 inches per year

The purple passion plant has an ethereal look due to its unique colouration. The leaves have a velvet-like texture and are predominantly green with vibrant purple veins and frilled margins. It is this contrasting colour and texture combination that draws in the admirers and ensures this plant takes centre stage. 

Native to Florida, this plant blooms bright orange flowers, however many people choose to remove them as they have an unpleasant smell.

Ensure that your purple passion plant or Velvet plant’ as it is also known, receives bright, indirect light and has very well-draining soil with a neutral pH. 

2. Spider Plant

Scientific Name: Chlorophytum comosum 

Spider Plant
  • Ideal Position: Full sun to light shade
  • Difficulty: Easy to care for  
  • Toxicity: Non-toxic 
  • USDA Zones: 9 to 11
  • Growth Rate: 12 to 15 inches every 6 to 12 months 

With over 200 documented types of spider plants are characterized by elegant, pointed leaves that are striped green and cream and droop downwards, resembling the long legs of spiders. 

During spring and summer, small white flowers will bloom among the evergreen foliage. 

Being native to South Africa, the spider plant grows best in tropical climates and requires bright but indirect light to avoid fading or loss of variegation. They can tolerate drought but not frost. 

3. Dumb Camille

Scientific Name: Dieffenbachia ‘Camille’

Dumb Camille
Credit: Forest and Kim Starr by CC: 3.0
  • Ideal Position: Indirect light
  • Difficulty: Easy to care for  
  • Toxicity: Toxic if ingested  
  • USDA Zones: 10 to 12
  • Growth Rate: 12 inches per year

Dumb Camille boasts beautifully patterned foliage. The large, broad leaves are white in the centre and green around the edges, creating an elegant look. When these plants receive plenty of diffused light, the leaves can become almost fully white. 

Being native to South America and the Caribbean, dumb Camille thrives in hot and humid climates like those of tropical rainforests. Whilst it thrives in light, avoid direct sunlight as it can burn the leaves. Moist, slightly acidic soil is best. 

4. Lucky Bamboo

Scientific Name: Dracaena braunii

Lucky Bamboo
Credit: Mokkie by CC: 3.0
  • Ideal Position: Indirect light
  • Difficulty: Easy to care for  
  • Toxicity: Toxic to cats and dogs  
  • USDA Zones: 10 and 11
  • Growth Rate: 19 inches per 6 months

Despite its name, this plant is not actually a true bamboo, although it resembles it in appearance. Lucky bamboo has been a popular houseplant for thousands of years because it is said to bring luck, prosperity and fortune.

This plant has a highly contemporary look with naked, waxy, bamboo-like stems that end with tufts of glossy green leaves. The stems can be trained to grow in elegant spiral patterns. 

Native to Western Africa, lucky bamboo favours tropical conditions and indirect light. It can be grown in moist, rich soil or even a glass of clean water. 

5. Chinese Evergreen

Chinese evergreen

Scientific Name: Aglaonema commutatum

  • Ideal Position: Low light to partial shade 
  • Difficulty: Easy to care for  
  • Toxicity: Toxic to humans and pets  
  • USDA Zones: 10 to 12
  • Growth Rate: 6 to 12 inches per year

Chinese evergreens are shade-tolerant plants that come in a variety of cultivars. They make excellent houseplants due to their large, uniquely colored foliage. 

Depending on the variety the leaves may be patterned green, pink, yellow and white. The brighter the leaves the more light they require to retain their colors. 

Native to Southeast Asia, Chinese evergreens favour humid air, warm temperatures and moist soil. Soil with a slightly acidic pH is preferred.  

6. String of Hearts

Scientific Name: Ceropegia woodii

String of Hearts
Credit: Salicyna by CC: 4.0
  • Ideal Position: Bright, indirect light 
  • Difficulty: Easy to care for  
  • Toxicity: Non-toxic  
  • USDA Zones: 10 to 12
  • Growth Rate: 12 inches per year

If you are looking for a trailing plant to hang, then a string of hearts could be for you. This houseplant is so-called due to the delicate, heart-shaped leaves spaced out along its thin stems.

The leaves are green with pale veins on top and pink underneath, which is visible when hanging above your head. 

String of hearts is native to South Africa and is a semi-succulent species. It grows best in warm environments and cannot tolerate the cold. They are drought hardy and should only be watered once the soil has completely dried out. 

7. Rubber Plant

Scientific Name: Ceropegia woodii

Rubber Plant
  • Ideal Position: Bright, indirect light 
  • Difficulty: Easy to care for  
  • Toxicity: Mildly toxic to humans and animals   
  • USDA Zones: 10 and 11
  • Growth Rate: 24 inches per growing season

Rubber plants are characterized by their large, leathery, ovular leaves. Depending on the variety, the leaves may be patterned green, white or maroon. The foliage sits atop upright stems, creating an elegant look. 

Native to Southeast Asia, the rubber plant thrives in warm, humid climates. These plants are fairly hardy and can tolerate low temperatures and a variety of soil types.

8. Chinese Money Plant

Scientific Name: Pilea peperomioides

Chinese Money Plant
  • Ideal Position: Bright, indirect light 
  • Difficulty: Easy to care for  
  • Toxicity: Non-toxic   
  • USDA Zones: 10 to 12
  • Growth Rate: Double in size per year

The Chinese money plant is also known as the pancake or UFO plant due to its unique foliage. It has round, dark green leaves that resemble coins. The leaves sit on the ends of long, red stems. This plant is believed to bring luck and fortune to the owner. 

Being native to Southern China, the Chinese money plant prefers mild climates. It favours bright locations but not direct sunlight and can withstand cool temperatures. The rapid growth of this plant makes it easy to maintain and propagate. 

9. Snake Plant

Scientific Name: Dracaena trifasciata

Snake Plant
Credit: W. Carter by CC: 4.0
  • Ideal Position: Indirect sunlight to partial shade 
  • Difficulty: Easy to care for  
  • Toxicity: Toxic to humans and animals   
  • USDA Zones: 10 to 12
  • Growth Rate: 3 to 6 feet per year

Also known as ‘Mother-in-law’s tongue’, the snake plant is an evergreen that is characterized by its vertical, sword-shaped foliage. 

The leaves are green and yellow striped and can grow up to 8 feet in height. They are a popular houseplant choice due to their ability to purify the air. 

Native to Western Central Africa where they thrive in hot, dry and rocky habitats. They are hardy and drought tolerant and unsurprisingly one of the easiest house plants to care for. 

10. Hibiscus 

Scientific Name: Hibiscus rosa-sinensis

Hibiscus 
  • Ideal Position: Full sun 
  • Difficulty: Easy to care for  
  • Toxicity: Non-toxic   
  • USDA Zones: 5 to 9
  • Growth Rate: 2 feet per year

Hibiscus are a great way to add colour, beauty and a hint of the tropics to your indoor space. Their large, trumpet-shaped flowers come in red, white, pink, yellow, orange and purple and when in bloom, make a showy focal point.

Despite their extravagant look, hibiscus is surprisingly easy to care for. To produce the best blooms, hibiscus require rich and moist soil, full sun and humid air. These hardy flowers can tolerate some degree of drought, but not cold temperatures. 

11. Pothos

Scientific Name: Epipremnum aureum

Pothos
Credit: Mokkie by CC: 4.0
  • Ideal Position: Indirect light to partial shade  
  • Difficulty: Easy to care for  
  • Toxicity: Toxic   
  • USDA Zones: 10 to 12
  • Growth Rate: 2 feet per year

Sometimes called golden pothos or devil’s ivy, this plant is low-maintenance and fast-growing. It has heart-shaped leaves that are patterned green and white. 

The trailing nature of this plant means it looks excellent in hanging baskets and is a great houseplant variety due to its air-purifying ability. 

Pothos grows best in well-draining soil, filtered light with warm temperatures and high humidity. 

12. Fiddle Leaf Fig

Scientific Name: Fiscus lyrate

Fiddle Leaf Fig
  • Ideal Position: Full sun   
  • Difficulty: Easy to care for  
  • Toxicity: Toxic   
  • USDA Zones: 9 to 11
  • Growth Rate: 2 feet per year

The fiddle leaf fig is a small, tropical, evergreen tree. It is a popular houseplant and can grow anywhere between 2 and 10 feet tall. It boasts large, broad, green leaves that have lighter veins. This plant is so called because its leaves resemble the shape of a fiddle. 

Native to Africa, the fiddle leaf fig prefers hot and humid climates like that of its native rainforests. These plants are not hardy and cannot tolerate very cold temperatures. They make excellent houseplants due to their air-purifying ability. 

Fast Growing Indoor Plant Care

Providing your indoor plants with optimal care and conditions will ensure they can grow at their maximum rate. Although different plant species have different care requirements, I have provided you with some general guidelines that can be applied to all species. 

Watering Requirements

Most plants like to have evenly moist soil so they can absorb nutrients and remain hydrated. Heavily saturated roots can become waterlogged which can lead to root rot. 

Generally, houseplants should be watered when the soil 2-3 inches deep feels dry to the touch. For best results, get into the habit of checking the soil moisture by pressing two fingers into the soil before you water your plants. If the soil feels damp, hold off watering and check back in a few days.

Position

Typically, indoor plants thrive in bright but indirect light. Locations near windows are ideal. 

It’s essential your houseplant receives enough light to photosynthesize, but direct sunlight can scorch the leaves. 

Temperature and Humidity

Most houseplants are native to tropical regions, so prefer warm and humid climates. Temperatures between 65oF and 75oF and humidity levels between 40% and 60% tend to be best but you should check the specific requirements of your plant variety to be sure.  

Feeding

Houseplants should only be fed when they are actively growing so avoid fertilizing during winter dormancy. I prefer a diluted liquid fertilizer solution that can be applied directly to the soil via watering. This helps to avoid over-fertilizing and salt build-up in the soil.

Propagation

You can propagate houseplants from seeds or roots, but the easiest and most common way is via cuttings. Cut off a healthy stem with at least one leaf and transfer it to a jar of water. Once roots have grown you can transfer it to some potting soil. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the fastest-growing plant?

Bamboo is the fastest-growing plant on Earth. It can grow more than 1 meter each day. 

Citations

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Ben's horticultural interest grew when graduating from Hertfordshire University in 1997. Having contributed to numerous publications including Better Homes & Gardens, Garden Design Magazine, and The English Garden. He is also the author of Propagating Houseplants Made Easy.