These 5 Plants Will Brighten Up Any Dorm Room

They’re perfect for small spaces.

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Most of our team was new to New York City once—in fact, a lot of us began our journeys here as college students. And it’s about that time for people to get back to school again.

Dorm rooms can be stark and tiny, so we have a suggestion that might just help your new home feel more like… well, home: plants. There’s nothing like adding some greenery to a room to make it more comforting, and plants can also help increase your productivity, boost your creativity, and reduce your stress. Go on, tell us those aren’t three things you’ll need this semester.

Here are our top five choices for

dorm room plants



Ripple Peperomia

This compact beauty’s rippled leaves can come in at either emerald green, or a striking ruby red that’s almost purple. The ripple peperomia is also considered completely non-toxic by the ASPCA, which makes it the perfect plant pick if you’re sharing your dorm room with a furry friend.

Treatment: Medium, indirect light. Water once a week.

Shop more ripple peperomias and learn more at The Sill.


Neon Pothos

This brightly-colored pothos plant will add a pop of color to any space—even a drab dorm room. The fast-growing, trailing plant is perfect for either a hanging basket, or the top of a bookshelf. It’s also easy to propagate in water, so you can share the cuttings with all your new friends.

Treatment: Medium to low, indirect light. Water once a week, or when soil is dry.

Shop similar plants and learn more at The Sill.


Snake Plant

The hardy snake plant does just fine with low light levels and irregular watering, which makes it a popular pick for neglectful plant parents (or busy college students). It also filters the indoor air toxins benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, xylene, and toluene, so it helps to improve air quality as well.

Treatment: Medium to low, indirect light. Water once a month, or when base is wrinkled.

Shop snake plants and learn more at The Sill.


ZZ Plant

This structural beauty only looks hard to care for—it’s actually virtually indestructible. The zz plant is tolerant of super low light levels, and it can go weeks without needing to be watered. Seriously: The only way to kill it is by giving it too much love. It’s also a slow grower, which making it perfect for a small, vertical space—aka, your dorm room.

Treatment: Medium to low, indirect light. Water once a month, or when base is wrinkled.

Shop zz plants and learn more at The Sill.



Cacti are desert natives that love to sunbathe, so make sure your dorm is nice and bright before you start your college cacti collection. On the plus side, though, if the light is right, cacti don’t need much else to thrive.

Treatment: Bright, direct light. Water once a month, or when wrinkled.

Shop cacti and learn more at The Sill.

The Sill is a garden shop based in New York City that specializes in indoor plants perfect for city apartments. At The Sill (or on their website), you can shop, learn, or work hand-in-hand with a dedicated Plant Specialist on a plant design and maintenance program.

See more plant tips:

14 Houseplants That Won’t Feel Like Chores Everything You Need to Know About Marimo Moss Balls The 5 Best Low-Maintenance Plants to Put in Your Bathroom