Indoor plant & pot trends for 2020

Alick Burnett Managing director 🌻

Over the last few years, indoor plants have become a fashion trend in their own right. Google search data shows that there has been a dramatic increase in searches for indoor plants over the last five years, and there are now more than 730,000 posts on Instagram’s #HousePlantsOfInstagram tag. Though, that pales in comparison to the 2.1 million images labelled #IndoorPlants, and more than 13 million variety-specific uploads tagged with simply #succulent or #succulents.

Potted artificial plants on bench

We’ve recently carried out a pair of surveys around the theme of popular plant styles, interior inspiration and even the longevity of indoor plants. We asked more than 1,000 plant-lovers around the UK about their favourite (and least-favourite) plants and planters, how much they spend on indoor plants each year and how many real plants they’ve killed. We also quizzed our own customers on the mood-boosting benefits of indoor plants – both real and artificial – and where they get their inspiration from. From it, we’ve pulled out the top indoor plant trends for 2020, along with some other interesting findings.

The UK’s favourite indoor plants

Houseplant trends for 2020 - blog post by Blooming Artificial
The UK's favourite indoor plants 2020.

While social media is still very much awash with Monstera Mondays, and images of snake plants and Boston ferns are as far as the eye can see, nothing could shake succulents and cacti from the number one spot. Known for being hard to kill, as well as being on-trend, these easy-care houseplants were a shoe-in for the top spot.

If you’ve got pets who could be poisoned by a succulent, or children who could run into trouble with a cacti’s spines, you can get your fix of this houseplant trend with our selection of artificial cacti and succulents instead.

Interestingly, the second most popular plant on the list was the classic orchid. These proved most popular with respondents in age categories 55-64 and 65+, but still fared well in every other age group. Notoriously hard to please, orchids are overlooked in a lot of trendy #IndoorJungle posts – which tend to focus on leafy greenery and tropical life. But they are a timeless household plant, and a good way to add a splash of colour to the home. If you want to get in on this trend for 2020, we’ve got some brilliantly lifelike faux orchids that don’t require any fuss.

Though undoubtedly still popular, snake plants, ferns and Devil’s Ivy were all bumped out of the top 10. It seems that plant-lovers in the UK are more likely to pick tropical plants, flowering plants or other greenery, than these in 2020.

Trending pots & planters

Houseplant pot trends - blog post by Blooming Artificial

Buying indoor plants is only half of the fun – picking out the perfect pot or planter is equally important when it comes to your interior décor. To look at Pinterest, Instagram and other social media sites for mood boards and inspiration, you’d be forgiven for thinking that terrariums and hanging planters were all anyone was buying. But as our public survey found, that’s no longer the case.

The most popular picks in the UK are modern plant pots, and minimalist designs. Rustic pots and planters came in a close third place, while less than 10% of people showed love for terrariums, and just 6% were interested in hanging planters like macramé creations and eye-catching kokedama.

Where do people get their inspiration?

  • 46% of customer survey takers said physical retailers were a source of interior inspiration for them, compared to just 23% who look to Instagram for ideas.

  • Homes and interiors magazines – both in print (41%) and online (40%) – were the next most popular options.

  • Pinterest tied with online home and interior retailers to take joint fourth position, each voted for by 38% of our shoppers.

  • Surprisingly, Instagram doesn’t take the next spot on the leader board; 27% of us prefer to get inspiration from the homes of our friends and family, with Instagram sliding into seventh place.

The least popular places to get home décor inspiration, and to find the latest indoor plant trends, were blogs, print newspapers and galleries, all chosen by less than 10% of respondents. A few creative customers told us that they get their inspiration purely from their own imagination, and a few added that they look to TV shows for ideas.

How many indoor plants does the average person kill?

Houseplant info - blog post by Blooming Artificial

In our national public survey, we asked people who have bought house plants in the last two years how much they’d spent, and how many of their plants had died. The results show that a typical plant-lover in the UK has killed 31% of the indoor plants they’ve bought in the last two years.

18-24 year olds were more likely than other age groups to be left out of this calculation, due to stating that all of their indoor plants are artificial, with almost 10% saying that they don’t have a single real plant in their home. Meanwhile, 55-64 year olds and over 65s can proudly state that they are the least likely to kill their house plants; around 30% of over 65s say that they haven’t killed a single plant since 2017!

The 25-34 and 35-44 age groups fared badly here, with around 40% of people in each of these age groups stating that they’ve killed more than half, and in some cases all, of their recent plant purchases.

Typical costs & losses on houseplants

Houseplant facts - blog post by Blooming Artificial

According to our public survey, the average person who buys indoor plants spends around £74 each year on plants, pots and soil. However, some respondents said that they spend more than £350 a year. If 31% of plants purchased by those high-spending individuals die, that’s around £108 spent each year on plants that don’t survive.

Scottish respondents had killed the most plants, and also spent the most on plants – presumably, in part, due to the cost of replacing those which had expired.

  • 40% of Scottish survey respondents have spent more than £150 a year on plants in the last two years, and one in five said they’d killed 75% or 100% of what they’d bought.

  • Comparatively, Yorkshire locals have spent the least. 67% of Yorkshire’s plant owners have spent less than £50 a year on plants, pots and soil since 2017.

  • 'Millennials’ (aged 25-34) spend more than other age groups on indoor plants. While the national average annual spend is £74, millennials spend around £110 on indoor plants and pots each year, killing 35% (£39 worth) of their spend.

  • 55-64 year olds spend an average of just £49 per year, and typically kill around 29% (£14 worth).

Mood boosting plant properties

Indoor plants, whether real or fake, are said to be a great mood-booster. In our customer survey, we asked whether indoor plants help to improve people’s mood. 96% of respondents agreed that having plants around their home improved their mood either a little or a lot, regardless of whether they are real or fake. But for those who are less green-fingered, it can be very demoralising to find that real houseplants have died – particularly when you’ve invested in both the plant and its care.

Just as people’s online searches for indoor plants have dramatically increased over the last five years, so have Google searches for artificial plants. With around a third of the plants people buy each year ending up dead, it’s no surprise that interest in artificial versions is growing alongside the indoor plant trend.

If you’re keen to give your home a mood-boosting interior update, including plants that have made the top of the league table for the New Year, take a look at our range of artificial plants and flowers. With no risk that they’ll be dead by this time next year, you could even swap a few choices in and out on rotation to suit the changing seasons!