Finally, houseplants are finding their rightful place in the home
London - Houseplants are booming in popularity as health-conscious millennials buy them to lift their mood.
Sales of indoor foliage plants – popular in the 1970s when ferns and rubber plants were all the rage – have doubled while flowering houseplants are up 80 percent.
Some of the most fashionable retro species include cheese plants and dragon plants, while urban dwellers opt for peace lilies because they purify the air.
Among the top sellers are alocasia – varieties of which are commonly known as elephant ear – with sales up tenfold. Species include Alocasia zebrina, which has eye-catching yellow and black zebra markings on its stems.
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Experts say the renting generation can not afford gardens or do not want to invest in beds only to move on. Some owners said they enjoy looking after the plants and watching them grow, and others believe they help their mental health and wellbeing.
Duncan McLean, senior plant buyer at Wisley, said: "The market’s been increasing year-on-year. The health and wellbeing element is the number one reason people buy houseplants.
"It is also as millennials and the Instagram generation like to improve their surroundings and the place that they live in.
"There’s also a bit of a retro thing and plants which improve the environment and purify air are selling well too."
Damian Powell, head of retail, said: "We have really focused on getting our houseplant and pot offer right, trying to link more with trends and attracting a younger shopper to come to us."
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Online outlets such as Patch are also benefiting from the trend – selling plants with names such as Robin the Rubber Plant – while Ikea said its houseplant sales are up two-thirds on a year ago.
These are the top-selling houseplants:
- Alocasia zebrina
- Elephant Ear
- Prayer plant
- Cheese plant
- Dragon plant
- Mother-in-law’s tongue
- Peace lily
- Spider plant
- Cape primrose