7 Celebrities Reveal Their All-Time Favorite Houseplants

published Nov 4, 2020
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One of the joys of this very unusual year is getting the chance to peek inside the homes of celebrities. We checked out Kate Hudson’s “beverage window” during a Rachael Ray interview, and Gabrielle Union’s bouclé sofa in her Instagram post. But perhaps the most exciting discovery since the beginning of the pandemic? Spotting Meghan Markle‘s fiddle leaf fig tree in the background of a Zoom call, because how fun is it to see a celebrity in their plant-loving element?

Of course, there are many more celebrity plant parents where that came from—after all, houseplants are all the rage no matter who you are or where you live. Out of pure curiosity (and perhaps another excuse to keep talking about plants), we asked and researched celebrities—from Marie Kondo to Billy Porter to Bill Nye the Science Guy—to find out what their favorite houseplant is and why. So grab your own green best buddy, take a seat near some indirect light, and find out what seven celebrities appreciate in a houseplant.

Credit: Lana_M | Shutterstock

Marie Kondo’s Favorite: Peperomia

In a story on KonMari.com, Marie Kondo revealed her deep love for gardening and talking to her plants, as she believes plants, like all possessions, “last longer and work harder for us when we acknowledge how vital they are.” So, which houseplant is her favorite of them all? The peperomia.

“It’s got an adorable round shape. It gives off a very gentle and easy vibe—plus it’s easy to raise,” she told Apartment Therapy.

Kondo is right about it being easy to take care of: The peperomia is compact, has succulent-like leaves that allow for a relaxed watering schedule (once every other week), and does well in moderate light to partial shade.

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JoJo Fletcher’s Favorite: Succulent

During an interview with People, JoJo Fletcher and fiancé Jordan Rodgers shared that they filled their new home with faux greenery instead of real plants because they couldn’t keep a cactus alive. When we talked to Fletcher earlier this year, she confirmed the cactus-killing story to be true—but nonetheless remained hopeful, as her favorite houseplant is a succulent.

“The safest bet for me is to stick with cactus and succulents, even though I’ve killed a cactus before—I don’t know how that’s possible,” Fletcher told Apartment Therapy. “For me, I’m going to stick to the plants that are relatively low-maintenance. I will even throw a faux plant in those planters and they look great.”

Fletcher is far from the only one who finds it difficult to take care of a succulent. Due to its purported easy nature, it’s easy to neglect too much. Just remember to water your succulent once a week, as long as the soil feels dry before you add the H20, and that should be enough.

Credit: Emma Fiala

Billy Porter’s Favorite: Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree

While we haven’t seen any of Billy Porter’s houseplants make an appearance on his Instagram, that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a soft spot for them. As a matter of fact, when we asked Porter what his favorite houseplant is, he impressed us with his veteran pick: a fiddle leaf fig tree.

“When I was dating my husband, it was dying in his apartment. Then he moved in with me four years ago, and it’s just grown and grown and grown,” Porter said. “It needed the window, the right kind of light, and it just so happens that our apartment in New York until December has the right kind of light.”

A fiddle leaf fig tree likes a warm, humid environment, which isn’t the easiest condition to maintain inside a home. But as long as you can keep it in a warm enough climate, give it direct light (like Porter does), and provide soil with good drainage, your fiddle leaf fig can thrive.

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The McGees’ Favorite: Black Olive Tree

Shea and Syd McGee recently made their Netflix debut on “Dream Home Makeover,” helping others achieve their, well, dream home—and you know plenty of plants were involved in the transformative process. So we asked what houseplant the McGees prefer to showcase in their own home, and the answer is a black olive tree.

“I love an olive tree and that they have very delicate leaves,” Shea said. “I think the tone of the green in a black olive tree is really beautiful.”

As long as you have access to bright sunlight, are comfortable repotting from time to time, and water every time the top inch of soil dries out, then you’re capable of caring for your own black olive tree, too.

Credit: Images say more about me than words. | Getty Images

Bill Nye’s Favorite: Orchid

Since Bill Nye seems to love every type of science, we had to ask if he happened to have a favorite houseplant (because, botany). His answer was a pleasant surprise: an orchid.

While you may think of an orchid as more flower than houseplant, you can totally keep yours alive longer than a week. All that’s needed is a sunny window, good air circulation, and being extra cautious of overwatering (it’s very easy to do with orchids).

In addition to houseplants, Nye expressed that he loves his lettuce and strawberries. We want a garden tour next!

Credit: Lauren Kolyn

Justina Blakeney’s Favorite: Prayer Plant (Among Many Others)

In the beginning of the pandemic, Justina Blakeney wrote a story for the Los Angeles Times about finding comfort with her indoor plants. She described how the plants that fill her home “keep her sane” by taking on various roles. For example, Blakeney talks to her tillandsia when she needs a good listener, finds happiness in misting her pilea and seeing it sprout babies, and feels motivated to hydrate with her Ficus Audrey. But for spiritual guidance, she turns to her beloved Maranta leuconeura, aka prayer plant.

“Every evening, his leaves fold together in prayer. He’s more devout than I am — I swear he prays all night long! — but his daily ritual reminds me of the natural rhythms of this crazy world: night and day, life and death, sickness and health,” she wrote in the LA Times article. “I need these reminders. Plants are friends, preachers, teachers, healers and therapists.”

To take care your own spiritual awakener—er, prayer plant—water it so it’s damp to the touch and evenly moist, preferably with warm water. In order to give a prayer plant the humidity it desires, place it with other houseplants or on a dish filled with pebbles and water. And indirect, bright sunlight will keep it happy!

Credit: Torrey Fox

Bobby Berk’s Favorite: Ficus Audrey

A few years back, Bobby Berk showed People around his L.A. apartment, during which he talked about how he puts a fiddle leaf fig tree in almost every house on Netflix’s “Queer Eye.” So it would be easy to assume that’s his favorite plant, but Berk threw us a curveball when he told us his answer: a Ficus Audrey.

Maybe this shouldn’t be much of a surprise, as Ficus Audrey has become a buzzed-about houseplant recently. It’s got a leafy appearance with height that matches a fiddle leaf fig tree, but it’s much more tolerant of inconsistent watering, making it much easier to take care of. Just place it in indirect sunlight, water if the soil is dry two to three inches deep, and mist on occasion.

The Apartment Therapy Plants vertical was written and edited independently by the Apartment Therapy editorial team and generously underwritten by Greendigs.