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5 Best Japanese Indoor Plants for Growing Indoors

If you are looking for ways to make your home attractive, adding some indoor plants to your living place is one of the best ideas; moreover, if you are looking forward to growing Japanese indoor plants, congrats! You are going to add an aesthetic vibe to your landscape.

Growing Japanese indoor plants is absolutely a home improvement, and it also adds a touch of glamour to your living spaces. Native Japanese plants are a great choice among people for indoor planting, as they prove to be a stunning addition to every indoor garden.

Most Japanese indoor plants demand relatively low maintenance for their proper growth. Therefore, they are a perfect choice for most indoor gardeners.

This article will discuss some of the best Japanese indoor plants and how to care for them so that they remain healthy and lavish. So, without further delay, let’s get straight into this topic.

Bonsai tree sitting in dark environment. - 
Japanese Indoor Plants.
Japanese Indoor Plants — Image via Zhao Chen.

Japanese Indoor Plants — Gardening Culture

The art of Japanese gardening is an essential part of Japanese culture. Japanese are masters at indoor gardening.

Their gardening tradition is about a thousand years old, and they have been able to develop it more than you can imagine. The idea of gardening was first introduced to the Japanese during the Asuka period.

The primary purpose of Japanese gardening is to bring harmony between life and nature.”

Japanese gardeners use traditional materials to create beautiful scenery like the natural world. Their garden designs allow them to connect with their philosophy and religion. The style of Japanese gardens also varies depending on conditions like weather or climate.

The plants in their gardens represent inner growth and strength. You won’t need to become a Japanese gardening master to achieve the same indoor spiritual vibe. Thus, furnishing your home with these fantastic plants can be a source of pleasure for you.

The Most Famous Japanese Indoor Plants

Many Japanese indoor plants originate from the gardening culture of Japan, and they are very famous among people who are fond of them.

People love to grow different Japanese plant species indoors or outdoors. If you also want to put some Japanese indoor plants in your home, here are some of the best ones.

1. Japanese Zelkova

Japanese Zelkova or Zelkova serrata would be an excellent addition to your house.

Most people recognize this plant as the Japanese Elm Bonsai. It is native to Japan and Korea and belongs to the Ulmaceae family.

Japanese Zelkova has delicate, oval-shaped green leaves during summer, which change to yellow or orange in autumn. This Japanese indoor plant suits nicely indoors because of its straight trunk and wide arch-shaped branches.

A Bonsai Elm plant. Japanese Indoor Plants
Japanese Indoor Plants — Image via Hikinghillman.

Japanese Elm likes sunny areas and grows better in direct or intense sunlight. It proliferates when young, but the growth rate slows down when it matures. It usually grows about 50 to 80 ft. in height. These Japanese indoor plants are resistant to many diseases and can also tolerate wind, heat, and drought.

Best Growing Conditions

  • Place it near an east or south-facing window or any other spot where it gets sufficient sunlight.
  • It grows well in average soil but prefers a rich, moist loamy potting mix.
  • It can tolerate drought; that’s why try to prevent waterlogging; otherwise, it can cause root rot to your plant.
  • Increase the addition of fertilizer during the growing period and decline it when the plant gets dormant during winters. Try to use potassium fertilizer during winter in diluted form.

2. Japanese Peace Lily

Peace lily or Spathiphyllum wallisii is a well-known plant that needs low maintenance and has glossy green leaves with white flowers (white spathe covering a spadix). The Peace lily is not a lily and comes from the Arum family Araceae.

Its name is related to its white flowers, which look like white flags to symbolize peace.

Peace Lily flower. Japanese Indoor Plants
Japanese Indoor Plants — Image by Adriano Gadini.

Peace lilies are easy to grow and trouble-free plants. They generally grow about 1 to 4 ft. in height, but few can be tall enough as 6 ft.

Peace lily proves to be very helpful in cleaning the air and removing harmful toxins, including benzene and carbon monoxide.

That’s why it is one of the best options among the Japanese indoor plants for you if you want to live in a healthy environment without any contaminants in the air.

Best Caring Conditions

  • The best spot for your Peace lily would be in the shade or indirect sunlight. Please protect it from the harsh direct rays of the sun, especially during midday.
  • Only use organic fertilizers during the growing seasons, which helps your plant bloom.
  • It grows best in temperatures between 65 to 85°F. Therefore, try to protect your plant from cold in winter.
  • It usually needs to be watered once a week. You’ll see leaf drop if it doesn’t get sufficient water. You don’t need to worry about the dropping leaves if it has just started. Just get the plant around a proper watering schedule, and it will turn back to normal.
  • These plants are vulnerable to root rot, so make sure to let the soil/potting mix dry between waterings and put your plant in a container with good drainage.
  • Peace lily caretakers usually encounter some problems with the plant, but the most common are pests like spider mites or aphids that cause yellowing or browning leaves. In such cases, clean the leaves with water pressure and spray with insecticidal soap/neem oil.

3. Japanese Maple Plant

Due to many sizes, colors, and leave shapes, it is pretty hard to describe the Japanese Maple plant. It is one of the most popular plants among gardeners and usually gets attention because of its breathtaking looks and bright colors.

Japanese Maple red leaves. Japanese Indoor Plants
Japanese Indoor Plants — Image via Erika Varga.

The botanical name used for Japanese Maple is Acer palmatum, and it belongs to the Sapindaceae family. It is native to Japan and thrives in temperate climates. These plants have distinct red leaves and usually get a height between 15 to 25 feet, but as we are talking about “Japanese indoor plants,” you can also keep them short with the old bonsai technique.

Maple trees can prefer full to partial sunlight, but extensive exposure can cause leaf burn.

Growth and Maintenance

  • These plants are adaptable to low-intensity light and grow better in the shade. Vast exposure to sunlight causes leaf burn to the plant.
  • They can tolerate low temperatures and like slightly acidic, moist, well-drained soil.
  • Unless drought condition comes, you should water it minimum. Growing plants need water frequently, but a mature tree withstands a long time without water.
  • Add fertilizer in the late winter or early spring after your Maple is at least a year old. If needed, you can also feed it in summer. But always use fertilizers in dilute form.
  • They need very little pruning, but stay very careful in case of dead or infected branches and remove them as quickly as possible.

4. Japanese Stonecrop

The Japanese Stonecrop (aka Sedum makinoi) could be a beautiful addition to your home or indoor garden. They belong to the Crassulaceae family and are native to the temperate zone.

“They are known as ‘Stonecrops’ because they require little maintenance like stones.”

These plants have thick, semi-glossy, and dark green leaves and produce different colors of flowers, including pink, yellow, white, or red.

Bee on a Stonecrop plant. Japanaese Indoor Plants
Japanese Indoor Plants — Image via congerdesign.

The average size of Stonecrop is about 3 to 5 inches in height and 6 to 12 inches in width. Usually, these plants are not found in nurseries and are available in various rock garden societies.

Ideal Environment

  • These plants require full sun for proper and healthy growth.
  • Stonecrop is succulent and is exceptionally drought-tolerant; therefore, you have to wait for watering till the soil dries out.
  • They also need well-drained, moist, and slightly alkaline or neutral soil.
  • Stonecrop does not need much fertilizer to grow. Adding compost will provide enough nutrients to the plant. During spring or summer, you can add dilute liquid fertilizers.

5. Japanese Bamboo

Japanese Bamboo is an evergreen tree that belongs to the Asparagaceae family and is native to central tropical Africa. If you are aware of this plant, you might know it as Dracaena surculosa, Dracaena Gold dust, or Gold dust plant.

Japanese Bamboo has dark green leaves with cream or yellow spots, producing white flowers that later change into red berries. These are usually slow-growing plants and generally get a height of about 1 meter.

Gold dust plant. Japanese Indoor Plants
Japanese Indoor Plants — Image via Karl Gercens.

Growing Requirements


If you want a gorgeous décor for your house, putting some Japanese indoor plants is the best idea.

If you don’t have enough time to take care of plants, Japanese indoor plants are the perfect choice for you.

There are many Japanese indoor plants, but I mentioned some of the best ones above. All these plants look unique and require low maintenance and little care. You can choose as many of the plants as you like. You start loving them once you get them.

As I always say, your plants only need your love so if you have some plants, try to give them a fair chunk of your time. Your plants will feel happy, and in return, they will give your garden a lavish and superb look.

Regards, Moiz Atiq.