7 Best Trailing Plants to Grow Indoors

Trailing plants are great ways to add vertical interest and greenery. Which indoor plants should you consider?

Houseplants are an excellent way to brighten the interior of your home and bring nature inside. But if your home is small, finding a suitable spot for a plant and fitting it between furniture may be difficult. So, what is the solution? Grow vertically!

Thinking vertically means utilizing a variety of inventive hanging pots with trailing plants to transform your space into a green haven. Trailing house plants have long, dangling stems. Growing them in hanging baskets, in pots suspended from the ceiling, or on a shelf highlights their beauty by allowing their stems to fall down for a dramatic effect. 

This method of growing trailing plants adds depth and intrigue to your home while also adding height and softness to the area in which your plants are displayed.

Here are some of the best trailing plants to grow indoors:

1. Chlorophytum comosum ‘Spider Plant’

The spider plant, chlorophytum comosum, is one of the most popular and well-known houseplants. It’s popular with beginners since it’s simple to grow, doesn’t mind being ignored, and thrives in practically any environment. The common name refers to the little plantlets that develop on long, trailing stalks and resemble spiders.

This herbaceous perennial grows in clusters along South Africa’s beaches. Its slender, strap-shaped leaves sprout from a central point. The leaves might be entirely green or have white or yellow stripes that run lengthwise. The leaves do not appear flat, but instead folded or channeled in the center. Plants range in height from 12 to 15 inches. 

The plant’s thick, fleshy roots and rhizomes have developed to retain water, allowing it to thrive in dry areas. Spider plants grow well indoors all year in medium to bright light. It performs best when the humidity is moderate and the temperature is cold to average, although it can tolerate higher temperatures.

Use a soilless medium or general-purpose potting soil. Because spider plants grow swiftly and their roots may easily grow too close together, they must be repotted frequently to thrive. 

After the plant blooms, little plantlets, the “spiders,” appear where the flowers used to be. These can grow into new spider plants, if you decide to plant them.

Place the plantlet in a container with soilless potting material. Leave it attached to the mother plant until the plantlet begins to develop roots. If necessary, hold the plantlet down onto the potting material with a piece of wire or paper clip. After a few weeks, cut the stem that connects the plantlet to the mother plant.

Spider plants purify the air in homes and businesses by absorbing toxins such as formaldehyde, xylene, benzene, and carbon monoxide.

a hanging houseplant in a terracotta ceramic pot

2. Hedera Helix ‘English Ivy’

English ivy, or hedera helix, is an evergreen groundcover also known as woody vine. It spreads horizontally but can also climb because of its aerial rootlets.

Although the plant will eventually produce small greenish blossoms, it is primarily grown for its evergreen leaves. Because of this, ivy is classified as a foliar plant.

It’s a versatile houseplant that does well in a range of conditions. Most ivy cultivars thrive in bright light, but not direct sunshine. Low to medium light conditions slow development, and variegated specimens may turn entirely green.

Ivies grow well in hanging baskets, at the base of other houseplants, and in their own containers. Small-leaved ivies add texture to a variety of tropical plants and look fantastic in a dish garden.

While most ivies have nearly limitless spread as houseplants, they can simply be clipped to any size you desire. Slow-growing, little-leaf cultivars are easier to keep in a small container. With its lobed leaves and trailing tendrils, English Ivy is a lovely accent plant. 

Because English ivy is toxic to both humans and animals, keep a watch on children and pets.

Hedera helix english ivy plant vines

3. Senecio Rowleyanus ‘String of Beads’

Senecio rowleyanus, often known as the ‘string of beads,’ is an intriguing houseplant that can serve as a unique focal point in the home. The string of beads plant resembles a beaded necklace with its fleshy green, pea-like leaves that spread over the sides of containers or hanging baskets. 

Though the flowers may appear little and unappealing to some, those who are fortunate enough to obtain them find the delicate white flowers (with a cinnamon aroma) to be rather pleasing.

This drought-tolerant succulent can endure for extended periods without water. Excessive watering might aggravate root rot. Allow at least half an inch (1 cm) of dry time between waterings. In the winter, limit watering to once a month.

This plant grows best in full sun or light shade. Unlike many other succulents, it is a winter grower that lies dormant in the summer.

String of beads is slightly toxic and can cause irritation when touched or ingested. It should be cultivated with caution in homes with small children and pets.

Little herreianus plant hanging ceramic planter

4. Platycerium Bifurcatum ‘Staghorn Fern’

Because it is very easy to grow, the staghorn fern (platycerium bifurcatum) is a very popular ornamental plant. The staghorn fern is native to the rainforests of Java, southeastern Australia, and New Guinea, so it does best in very mild climates (zone 9 and above) and as a houseplant.

It thrives in bright, indirect light. Its fronds will be damaged by direct sunlight and hot summer heat.

The flat, spherical, and light green fronds fount at the plant’s base turn brown as they mature. The fertile fronds, which develop from the base fronds and may reach a length of 3 feet (90 cm), are the second kind. The strongly lobed fronds mimic the antlers of a staghorn deer. They have green scales that are coated with white felt.

In nature, staghorn ferns are epiphytes that cling to tree trunks, absorbing nourishment from falling leaves and other waste caught behind their slightly curled sterile fronds. The best way to maintain a potted fern is to set the pot into a tray of water for 15 minutes to water it from below. Any other watering method will quickly lead to the decay of the base fronds.

staghorn fern plant on a woven planter

5. Ceropegia Woodii ‘String of Hearts’

The string of hearts (ceropegia woodii) is a South African native, trailing, succulent-like plant. Its tiny heart-shaped leaves and slender tendrils may grow up to 12 inches long in its natural environment, which explains its alternate names, rosary vine and sweetheart vine.

Place your string of hearts in an area with a lot of dazzling indirect light. Too much direct sunlight may burn the leaves, but too little light stunts its growth. Place it a few feet away from a south- or west-facing window or directly into a north- or east-facing window.

This plant is sensitive to overwatering and prone to root rot. Only when the soil is dry 2/3 of the way down in the container is the plant ready for its next drink. During the winter months, when the plant is dormant, allow the soil to dry out completely before giving it more water.

Rotate your plant on a regular basis to promote consistent growth and dust the leaves often to ensure maximum photosynthetic activity. 

beautiful string hearts plant in a white ceramic plant

6. Rhipsalis Paradoxa Minor ‘Chain Cactus’

Rhipsalis paradoxa is distinguished by its linked, succulent leaves, which provide character to your home. This easy-care plant is a must-have for anybody who enjoys succulents and unique plants, whether they are beginners or experts. It’s ideal for busy individuals who don’t have a lot of time to care for their houseplants.

This plant is a branching cactus that produces flattened green leaves with serrated, eye-catching edges. Sometimes known as the chain cactus, it is native to Brazil. 

The cactus’ linked leaves are evergreen and may reach a height of 1 to 6 feet if it is given the proper growth conditions and space. Branches are typically 1 inch wide.

This plant prefers areas with plenty of bright, indirect light. If it is exposed to direct sunlight, the leaves may burn.

Between late winter and early spring, the cactus develops little white blossoms down the length of its branches. The blooms are odorless and have a diameter of around 0.5 inches. The petals of the blooms are sometimes yellowish, with little black brushstrokes.

Rhipsalis produces tiny, red, inedible fruit once it is done flowering. The fruit contains seeds that may be utilized to propagate the plant.

diy concrete pot with a lash drawing

7. Epipremnum Aureum ‘Devil’s Ivy’

Devil’s ivy (epipremnum aureum), also known as Pothos ivy, is a blessing for people whose homes have limited natural light. This plant is nearly impossible to kill, and it stays green even when kept in the dark.

Devil’s ivy is a trailing plant that is ideal for small spaces that need a little greenery to cheer them up. It can be cultivated on a moss pole, in which case the width is kept narrow. It can also be grown as a trailing plant in a hanging pot or on a shelf.

Plant this ivy in a well-draining potting mix, ideally a mix of soil and perlite. It should be placed in a location with indirect, bright light. Low light will slow its development. 

Only water when the soil is dry to the touch. If the leaves turn yellow, cut back on the amount of water you provide. Pruning and regular dusting foster bushier growth.

Devil’s ivy rarely blooms when grown as a houseplant. Outdoors, it can develop flower stalks with flowers that resemble those of a peace lily.

young pothos plant in a simple white pot
Alaine Connolly
Alaine has been working way too hard in horticulture since 1992, beautifying golf courses, resorts, and hotels. She is a part time landscape designer who works full time caring for a 28,000 square foot public garden. At home, she maintains her own 400 square feet plot. Alaine lives in northern Illinois - zone 5b.
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