Indoor Plants That Don’t Need Sunlight [Great for Beginners!]

indoor plants that dont need sunlight

Indoor Plants That Don’t Need Sunlight [Great for Beginners!]

A little sunshine is bright enough to make anyone’s day better. Houseplants enjoy the light from the sun because it provides them with food. If you live somewhere that does not receive too much light, indoor plants that don’t need sunlight will make a great addition to your home!


Low-light houseplants are easy to care for. Although sunshine is important for all plants, these types of flora can still look beautiful in your home with just a small amount of light. Whether you are a first-time plant parent or long-time plant admirer, it is hard to own one plant. If you want to own and learn more about these low-light houseplants, read further to see why these plants are amazing!



Do All Plants Need Sunlight?

Yes, all plants require sunlight to sustain life. The amount of light required varies from plant to plant. Sunlight is an important part of photosynthesis. Here’s how sunlight plays an important part in how plants eat.


  • The plant absorbs water (H2O) from its roots.
  • Leaves from the houseplants absorb Carbon Dioxide (CO2) released from the environment and exhaled from people.
  • Light from the sun is absorbed and kept in the plants’ leaves.
  • Sunlight acts as an energy source to convert water and Carbon Dioxide into sugar, contributing to the plants’ overall health.
  • Plants release Oxygen (O2) as a byproduct that can be breathed in by humans.


Too much sunlight can be harmful to your plant. Overexposure to the sun can dry out the plant and prevent it from holding water. A lack of water and too much light can eventually kill your plant. It is because of this reason why plant experts recommend indirect light instead of direct sunlight for plant care.



plant in white pot white background



Do Indoor Plants Need Sunlight?

Yes, even plants kept and grown indoors require some time of light source. Some plant parents even seek supplemental lighting through special light bulbs for indoor plants. Some plants can’t be houseplants because they require hours of direct sunlight to thrive. Plants that are unsuitable as houseplants struggle in low light conditions will slowly have their vibrant green leaves turn yellow or even white.


One of the reasons why many tropical plants are good indoor plants is because the inside of a home provides a moderate temperature for them to grow. Houses with plenty of windows also offer plants a chance to receive indirect light.


According to a study from the University of Minnesota, a plant that is not suitable for low light conditions can become leggy. Leggy means that the space on a stem between leaf nodes expands toward the source of bright indirect light.



Types of Indoor Plants That Don’t Need Sun

Some homes or apartments might not receive enough light due to giant obstacles like buildings, trees, or by the directions the windows face. For the plant parents who live in these areas, special kinds of plants that don’t require sunlight are available.


Various plants are easy to care for with almost no direct sunlight. Here are a couple of low-light plants that are affordable, will not take up too much space, and will enhance your home’s indoor appearance.


  • Cast Iron Plant (Aspidistra elatior): Cast iron pots are known for being durable, which is an appropriate name for this low-light plant. This plant is native to Japan and is also known for handling temperature fluctuations and water neglect.
  • Snake Plant (Sansevieria Trifasciata): Snake Plants are the perfect starting plant for first-time plant owners. The leaves grow upright in a striped pattern of dark green and grayish-green. The Snake Plant enjoys getting indirect light but will still thrive in a dark corner of a room. This plant also purifies the surrounding air.
  • Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema): In its natural habitat, the Chinese Evergreen grows under the shade from the leaves of trees in a tropical forest. These plants are versatile and can grow in light settings such as medium to low light and bright indirect light.
  • Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum): Peace Lillies are naturally found in the shade, so it makes sense that they can survive in homes with low light sources. The plant also adds color with its spathe, which may be white, yellow, or green.
  • ZZ Plant (Zamioculcas zamiifolia): Besides handling low-light conditions, ZZ plants have Rhizomes for its roots which allow it to retain water and become drought tolerant.



What Indoor Plants Need the Least Amount of Light?

One of the things that low-light plants have in common is that they are named “understory” plants. In their natural habitats, these are plants able to grow under the full shade of trees and leaves.


Despite being hard-to-kill plants, these low-light dwellers come in different shapes, sizes, and colors. If your home needs color to give it a pop, then any of these plants will make great ornamental decorations.


  • Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum): Although Spider Plants can thrive with indirect bright light, they are known for tolerating medium to low light as well. The cluster of leaves on this plant arch down, making it ideal for a hanging pot in a dark corner of a home. 


Related: Spider Plant Care: Be the Best Plant Parent with These Tips


  • Dumb Cane (Dieffenbachia amoena): The Dumb Cane Plant has green leaves with a splash of yellow near the center of each leaf. Too much sun can damage the leaves, so this plant does well in shaded areas with low light.
  • Prayer Plant (Maranta leuconeura): During the day, the leaves on this plant are flat and open, and at night they fold upwards like hands about to pray. These plants are fine with a small amount of direct sunlight but respond well when fully or partially shaded.
  • Maidenhair Fern (Adiantum): The Maidenhair Fern hails from tropical forests with plenty of humidity. If you plan to keep this plant somewhere with low light settings, make sure to mist it to replicate the moisture in the air from its natural habitat.
  • Parlor Palm (Chamaedorea elegans): One of the most commonly sold houseplants on the market, Parlor Palm is popular because it is a sturdy plant that can handle low humidity and low light conditions.


What Happens if a Plant Doesn’t Get Any Light at All?

Plants who do not receive any light may lose their shapes and colors before withering and, eventually, dying. Light is required in the plants’ feeding process. Leaf discoloration is a sign of a plant struggling with a lack of light. Without enough sunlight, an indoor plant cannot create enough Chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is a naturally occurring chemical responsible for the green pigment on leaves and helps leaves absorb light.


When plants absorb light, they absorb the red and blue portions of the visible light spectrum and reflect green light. Red light helps plants produce strong leaves and stems. Blue light helps plants produce fruit and flower.


When your plants’ leaves begin to turn yellow, white, or cream-colored, they probably lack light. Try to move somewhere with a better light source. The amount of time each plant can last without light is different. Even if it is in low light conditions, make sure your plants are receiving light.



plants on shelves with pottery



Where Can I Get Indoor Plants That Don’t Need Sun?

Start your houseplant parent journey or add new adoptions to your plant family with Planted Pot! Planted Pot has an amazing selection of indoor plants that don’t need sun.


Whether it is Mother-in-Law’s Tongue plants or Chinese Evergreen, you can find almost any low light plants with Planted Pot. We do not just provide plants. We also help spread knowledge about plant care, health, and growth. With plants at affordable prices, it won’t be easy to limit yourself to just one plant!



Why Choose Planted Pot?

Planted Pot is an inclusive community of plant enthusiasts that spread knowledge and plants nationwide. Whether it is for your house or workspace, we have a life-sustaining houseplant ready to make itself at home with you!


At Planted Pot we provide the plant community with resources to help them deepen their bonds with plants. Planted Pot spreads the wealth of discovery, knowledge, and personal connection through plants. Add some green to your life with one of the amazing plants available with Planted Pot!



Final Thoughts – Indoor Plants That Don’t Need Sunlight

Plants and people share a special connection to the sun. The light from the sun helps provide plants and people with a source of life. Indoor plants that don’t need sunlight are the perfect math for homes that do not receive enough light or for people who prefer shade instead of sun tanning. If you are looking for houseplants that are a perfect fit for the world you live in, then check out Planted Pot!

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