Best House Plants That Grow In Water: Common Problems and Growing Guide

Best House Plants That Grow In Water


If you plan to revamp your interior design, one of your home’s value additions can be indoor plants. It can brighten your indoor space and have a mood enhancement quality about them. People like having water plants for indoor setup because these plants do not need a lot of care. More so, the water plants meant for indoors have an array of health benefits and can be a pivotal aspect of the indoor décor themes. Further, indoor plants also make an incredible option for people with tiny yard space for an outdoor garden or those who reside in places that receive severely cold winters.


So, if you are planting water plants for indoor first time, you may not be particular about their care and maintenance. In this case, our guide below will offer you all the necessary information that you need to ensure that your water plants for indoor thrive.


Table of Content


Why Do You Need Indoor Plants That Can Grow In Water?

The popularity of indoor water plants is on a surge, which may be attributed to the many benefits these plants bring. Some of these benefits are:


They purify the air

Indoor water plants help eliminate all the indoor pollutants and toxins in the air. A study proved that these plants could remove over eighty percent of the six volatile organic compounds in less than 12-hours. The plant’s purification ability depends on its size, the size of your indoor space, and the degree of toxins present in the air. To ensure that your house plants that grow in water function well, you need to keep the leaves clean and free from dust and take them outdoors periodically, so they receive natural sunlight.


They make the room more comfortable

The indoor water plants add liveliness and color to space and accentuate the environment’s physical aspect in a pretty pleasant manner. They can also help you reduce the noise, humidity, moderate the room temperature, and conceal unattractive areas.


Boost mental well-being and help you relieve stress

Indoor water plants can be beneficial for your mental health. Planting them can help you forget about all the annoying and stressful things happening in your life and focus on the present. Some of the water plants meant for indoors are equipped to offer you incredible stress-releasing benefits.


Helps boost productivity

You can place the indoor water plants near your desk, and that could stimulate your brain and improve your productivity at work. In a study conducted by the University of Exeter, it was found that workers who had the plants around their desks showed a fifteen percent hike in their productivity levels. They are also helpful in lowering the stress levels and improving our mental well-being and calmness, which directly impacts the person’s ability to be creative and focus more on the tasks. Thus, it is a good idea to have any one of these plants at your desk.


Best Indoor Water Plants – Choose Any!

Here, in this section, we will discuss some of the best house plants that grow in water.



There is a myriad of philodendron species available. Of all the known species of these houseplants that grow in water, the heart-leaf philodendron is considered one of the ideal house plants that live in water. You can start by placing a six-inch-long cutting into the transparent glass bowl or a jar in a place that receives indirect but bright sunlight. For this category of indoor plants that can grow in water, the care required is simple. You will have to water these plants every three to four days, and they will grow well.


Botanical Name: Philodendron


Lucky Bamboo

Next in line in our list for the best house plants that grow in water is the Lucky Bamboo. These water plants for indoors are known for their forgiving nature. You can plant the lucky bamboo plant in the narrow vases. However, while you pick the vase, be cautious of the plant size. For proper growth of these house plants that live in water, you must entirely dip the roots in the water. To ensure a firm placement, you can put some gravel in the vase around the plant.


Botanical Name: Dracaena sanderiana



With its heart-shaped, glossy foliage, Pothos is another most famous house plant that grows in water. For developing these house plants that live in water, you can take a fishbowl and keep your plant on the shelf. You can change the wetness of these best indoor water plants every few days as it will help you maintain the proper oxygen level in the bowl.


Botanical Name: Epipremnum aureum



English Ivy

You can grow the cuttings in the vase for a long while snipping the bottom leaves of the English ivy stem and then transplant it into the glass jar. You can place the plant at the windowsill where it receives the bright light.


Botanical Name: Hedera helix


Dumbcane and Chinese Evergreen

How can we speak about the top house plants that grow in water and not talk about the Chinese evergreen and Dumb cane? With leathery and variegated leaves, along with a silvery pattern, both of these are house plants that live in water. It is easy to propagate the cuttings in a transparent vase full of tiny aquarium rocks. In about a month, the roots will appear, and they will become bigger; that is when you can transfer them into the soil.


Botanical Name: Dieffenbachia and Aglaonema



Spider Plant

With its baby spiderettes and narrow arching foliage, the spider plant is another popular house plant that grows in water. People around the world widely prefer it. This can be increased permanently in the glass jar, or you can change the cuttings and plant them in the new pot after they have rotted. For these house plants that grow in water, proper care is quintessential. So, you must change the water every two to three days.


Botanical Name: Chlorophytum comosum


Arrowhead Plant

Like other vining plants and climbers, the arrowhead plant is one of the easiest house plants that grow in water. All you have to do is add fresh water two times a week, and it will grow to its full length. You can transplant it to the potting soil once the cutting sets new roots.


Botanical Name: Syngonium podophyllum


Wandering Jew

If you are interested in shopping for house plants that can grow in water, one popular choice is the wandering jews. These house plants that can grow in water are tough and thrive in warm climates, like a weed. The incredible variegated and purple-colored varieties make them one of the most desirable house plants that can grow in water. The best part about these indoor plants that can grow in water is to develop in terrariums.


Botanical Name: Tradescantia zebrina, Tradescantia fluminensis, Tradescantia pallida,




If you desire to add some visual appeal to your room, one of the best house plants that grow in water is Coleus. It has serrated and colorful leaves that will be a stunning and colorful addition to your jars and glasses. These house plants that live in water do not need direct sunlight. So, you can keep these house plants that can grow in water on the tabletop centerpiece in a decorative mason jar or a wine glass filled with water.


Botanical Name: Plectranthus scutellarioides


How To Grow Indoor Water Plants?

In general, house plants that can grow in water are very straightforward. It is a prevalent propagation method, wherein many plant parents use bottles or bowls to grow the plant. The indoor water garden comprises clipping from the existing plants from your home in water for many people. Growing plants in water are easy and effortless. More so, you have the flexibility of arranging them in a manner that best appeals to your eyes.


The technique of planting indoor plants that can grow in water is called hydroponic harvesting. It is a process wherein the farmers grow crops in a mix of nutrients to replace the soil and liquid water. For indoor water plants, you need ingredients such as oxygen, nutrients, water, and a container, to ensure that the plant does not tip over.


Now, let us take a look at some steps that will help you grow these plants.


Step 1 – Pick your plants.

Pick your plants


Firstly, pick the plants which are ideal for indoor hydroponics and are fast-growing. A fast-growing plant is the one wherein you will see a new bud or a new leaf every day. Some of the fast-growing plants are basil, rosemary, mint, and oregano. A few other options of the best indoor water plants you can consider are sage, lavender, wandering Jew, and Ivy. Further, a flowering plant, such as begonias, is also a great pick as they thrive in water.


Step 2 – Root it

Root it


After you have decided to grow water plants inside your house, you can clip a small part from your already planted plant and place it in a bottle or a jar, just like how you would if you do fresh planting in soil. While cutting, it is advised to take a cutting from below the leaf. The stem is known as the leaf node, and it is at this place where the maximum rooting hormone inside your plant has been active and will sprout. If you do not have any existing plants, you can even take from the plants in your friend’s house and begin growing from these segments.


Step 3 – Watering is essential.

For your plant’s growth, the water you use is pivotal. The city water is already filtered to cater to the public’s consumption needs. So, this means that it is chlorinated. Thus, it will have harmful chemicals, which may not be suitable for the plant, and rob your plant of the nutrients. We recommend you to go with healthy water or spring water as the nutrient level in them is higher. As for the containers, you can pick any transparent glass jar and place it in an area where the roots get the necessary light.


Now, make it a point to refill the jar monthly or anytime when it is half empty. Do not be bothered by the stagnant water as it is but ordinary. To ensure that your plants thrive, you must keep the water clean.


Step 4 – Regular check-in helps

Regular check-in helps


As the water starts looking murky, you need to take the hint and change the water. Also, during this while, the roots may have grown reasonably well. So, you will have to trim them neatly to ensure that they do not choke your plant. Plant parents growing natural herbs will have to replace the spring after a year. However, it all depends on the plant that you choose to grow. So, pick only the best indoor water plants. The more powerful or woodier the plant, the more time it will last in the water. For instance, basil will last a year, but rosemary can survive 6-years in water.


Common Problems That May Occur To House Plants That Live In Water

Regardless of whether you are a diligent plant owner or got a little lax intending to your indoor water plants, things can go wrong. To prevent your water plants from dying, you need to be vigilant, and check how they respond to light and water, and simultaneously keep a check on the growth changes.


Here are some telling signs, which indicate that something may be wrong with your indoor plants.


Yellowing leaves

As your indoor water plants grow older, they may turn yellow, and the leaves may fall off as a part of the natural aging process, and this is pretty normal. However, if the leaves turn yellow, regardless of the new growth, it may be because your plant is receiving a lot of light. You need to move the plant to a spot, which receives indirect sunlight and check if there is any improvement.


Leaves dropping

It may be a bit tricky to decipher as the indoor water plants may be a symptom of overwatering or underwatering. To understand your plant’s watering schedule, initially, a bit of a trial and error may be needed. So, till the leaves stop falling, you must persevere to preventing your best indoor water plants from dying.


Leaves curling

It can happen when your plant is exposed to low humidity to more extended drought periods. To prevent this, you should water the plant as frequently as you can. For additional moisture, you can mist the leaves.


Brown leaf edges

Underwatering or dry air is the prime cause of brown leaf edges. The critical culprit can also be over-fertilizing, wherein the leaf burn can appear with the browning of the tips. Thus, it is recommended to keep a tab on the label instructions and be cautious.


Wilting or the burnt leaves

It is a telling sign that your indoor water plants are getting too hot and maybe burned by the harsh sun. In particular, tropical foliage gets burnt easily by the direct sun and must be positioned away from the windows, wherein the glass amplifies the sunlight. The afternoon sun is typically damaging and robust for several indoor plants.


Root rot

Plants that have rotten roots are unable to absorb the nourishment and the moisture from the soil. It can cause dehydration in the plant, even if the soil is saturated thoroughly. To prevent root rotting, you need to have a fixed watering schedule and a proper drainage system.


If you can revive the plant, you can take it out from the soil and give your plants a quick rinse. Next, take a pair of sharp scissors, and cut out all the affected roots. You may also have to remove approximately half the foliage.


Sparse or leggy growth

It is a giveaway sign that your plant is not receiving adequate light. So, for this, you can reposition it to the spot which gets a bright light or ensure that it gets prolonged light exposure.


Lopsided growth

It is more apparent in only some indoor water plants. This is primarily an aesthetic issue and not something that can bring massive damage to your plant. One of the indoor water plants that usually gets lopsided unless rotated regularly is the Ficus Lyrata or the fiddle-leaf fig. Thus, it is essential to turn all the plant sides to ensure exposure to the room’s brightest corner. It is recommended to water the plants light or minor in this situation.


The plant is getting soft.

If your indoor water plants are getting soft and the leaves are mushy, it may be because of root rot. This may be happening because of overwatering. In this situation, it may be difficult for you to get your plant back to life, but it is not impossible. After a thorough plant inspection, remove the roots to enable your plant to air dry.


Spotty leaves

If your indoor water plants have spotty leaves, it may be because of a fungi problem. Several species depict spotting, which appears as reddish-brown, tan, lesions, or black spots, which usually run together and may lead to more oversized shapes. To save your plant, you need to remove these leaves. It will improve the probability of plant recovery.


Your plant depicts slow growth.

If your indoor water plants have stopped growing, it may be because of fungus gnats. It can be because of the larvae in the soil. Studies suggest that once the larvae hatch, they annex to the roots and drain the plant of necessary nutrients. Consequently, the plant may get yellow leaves or its growth may be hampered. It is one of the critical problems that must be treated at the earliest.



Frequently Asked Questions

Ques 1. Can plants live in water alone?

Ans. Yes, your water plants can live in water alone. However, it is essential to know that some plants thrive in water while others do not. But, almost every plant can be propagated and rooted in water. The only thing is that not all of them will grow and nourish. So, when you grow plants in water with zero soil, you can take cues from our list of the best indoor water plants mentioned above.



Ques 2. Which water must be used for growing house plants in water?

Ans. Tap water can be very harsh for your plant’s health and directly impacts the plant’s growth, for starters. However, bear in mind using bottled spring water to grow house plants that grow in water can make a lot of difference. For your plants to grow to their full bloom, bottled spring water and rainwater are your best water choices.


Do remember any water with salt or sugar is bad for your plants. But, what about the distilled water? Even though distilled water does no harm to the house plants that grow in water, the plants do not grow as quickly as they would in rainwater or bottled spring water. Springwater has natural minerals in it. This is vital for your plant’s growth.


Ques 3. How much time does it take for you to root an indoor water plant?

Ans. When planting in water, you need to place several cuttings in a single container. Until your cuttings are fully rooted, you add fresh water as and when required. Rooting usually happens in about three to four weeks. However, individual plants take a bit longer. Plants like Pilea peperomioides start rooting in a day or two. On the other hand, Hoyas may take many weeks to develop roots. If the sources are around 1 to 2 inches longer, the cutting is ideal for potting up.


Ques 4. Can the cuttings be put straight into the soil?

Ans. Technically you may transfer the cuttings to the soil any time you like. You can even propagate your water plants directly into the ground, but it can be a bit challenging to try at your home. When you propagate the plant into the soil, you need to ensure that the earth is humid, receives a good airflow, and is well moisturized. Though not impossible, it can be hard to do it indoors.


Ques 5. How to encourage your plants to grow in water?

Ans. To accentuate your chances of growth in house plants that live in water, you can use some rooting products. You can find several commercial products available in the market. Many of these products kill bacteria and fungus and prevent the plant from rotting. Many of these powders also have a growth hormone, which stimulates root formation in your chosen indoor water plant. You can pour just a little powder and then dip the stem into the powder and let it sit for a minute or two. Once the plant absorbs the powder, you can stick the subsequent cutting in the water. The water will not wash out all of the powder.


Some people also recommend the use of standard household products to stimulate rooting. You can dip your plant stem in cinnamon, and it can help you get rid of bacteria and fungus. Another alternative for stimulating root growth is by forming a rooting solution by dissolving an aspirin in water.


Ques 6. How can you make your plant roots stronger?

Ans. You will need to add phosphorous and potassium to the water to make your roots stronger. In the soil, these nutrients are already present. Even rainwater has a reasonable degree of phosphorous and potassium in them. So, anytime it rains, you know what to do. Some varieties of bottled spring water also have these nutrients in them.

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So, this is all about water plants for indoors. You can pick some plants from our list of the best indoor plants to grow in water and start planting them in water. Some of the fast-growing water plants ideal for amateurs are basil, rosemary, mint, and oregano. You can start with them as they require very little care and maintenance. Beyond their aesthetic and visual appeal, indoor plants that grow in water also purify the air and help you cover all the unattractive areas or bad spots on the walls. The advantages of planting indoor plants are endless. So, if you are looking for inspiration to be a plant parent, these are the best indoor plants to grow in water that you can start with. Happy Planting!