If subtlety isn’t your thing and you tend to gravitate towards all things big, bright, and bold, these 10 spectacular plants for indoors and out will add the liveliness you crave into your interior and garden design! A personality as vivacious as yours deserves a garden to match, so if you’re in search of some big, bold plants for indoors and out in Fort Lauderdale, check out these top picks that we just can’t get enough of!
5 Show-Stopping Plants for Indoors
Nothing breathes new life into your living space like adding some colorful, showy plants into the mix! These five favorites are sure to bring the wow-factor and will thrive beautifully indoors:
Moth Orchid: While orchids have earned a reputation for being notoriously finicky, the moth orchid is by far the easiest to take care of. The distinctive shape of the orchid is truly like no other—long and curved stems, with stunning blossoms that pop up one by one the taller it grows. They naturally grow in the rainforest, so to get the best results, you’ll want to try and mimic those conditions. Indirect sunlight and lots of humidity are key—just make sure you don’t overwater these beautiful blooms. They aren’t typically grown in soil — a quick-draining growing medium like bark or peat moss is preferred. Soak the growing medium once a week, and let it drain completely so there’s no standing water in the pot that can rot roots. Place the pot on a shallow tray full of pebbles and water to boost humidity without oversaturating your orchid with moisture.
Colorama Dracaena: We love the vivid magenta and green stripes of these fabulous foliage plants, with spear-like leaves that grow up and outward like a fountain. It prefers indirect sunlight and mild room temperatures between 65–80°, so it’s perfect for growing indoors. To keep it looking vivid and beautiful, try to water it with filtered water because the fluoride content in regular tap water can cause this dracaena to turn a bit of a brownish yellow. If you don’t have a filter, you can just leave out a container of water overnight and the fluoride will evaporate by the following day.
Magnificat Croton: This large-leafed plant has fairly inconspicuous flowers, but it more than makes up for that with its ultra-vibrant leaves that explode with rainbow colors. It starts out green with splashes of lemon yellow, but as it matures, it develops swirls and splatters of orange, pink, red, and purple. While it appreciates partial shade outdoors in hot summer climates, bright indoor light keeps the plant’s colors vibrant and foliage healthy. Place it in a spot by the window with plenty of sunshine. It also prefers a bit of humidity, and huddling it together near other plants will help it draw in more moisture from the air.
Cordyline: Similarly to the Colorama dracaena, these strikingly colorful plants have unbelievably bright, pointy leaves. There are several different colored varieties ranging from green, red, yellow, white, purple, pink, and some fabulous multi-colored mixes. They need lots of light, and they don’t tolerate chilly temperatures, so you can either keep them indoors all year or put them out in the summer and bring them back indoors in the winter. In early summer, they produce delicate lavender flowers that will fill your home with a deliciously sweet scent. You can grow cordyline outdoors too, but we really love it as an indoor plant because that smell is incomparable!
Bromeliad: If you’d like to add an exotic, tropical flair to your home decor, look no further than the bromeliad. This wacky plant has thick bracts that grow in a rosette formation, splayed outward like exploding fireworks in neon shades of red, yellow, purple, and orange. Despite what their wild appearance may suggest, they are very easy to take care of indoors. Though they may not last for more than a few years, they produce little “pups” that can easily be plucked off to grow into new plants!
5 Eye-Catching Outdoor Plants
If your backyard needs reinvigoration, these colossal plants will certainly deliver on size, color, and show-stopping brilliance. They love our hot, humid Florida weather, so you should have no problem getting these flamboyant flowers and plants to grow big and bright outdoors.
Bougainvillea: The bright fuchsia blossoms of the bougainvillea are truly a magnificent sight to behold, instantly whisking you off to paradise. If given ample room to grow, they’ll reach heights up to 30 feet tall! Depending on which variety you choose, they can grow as a tree, a ground cover, or a container plant, but we absolutely love when they’re trained to creep up an arbor, which creates a spectacular entryway into your garden.
Royal Poinciana: Also known as the flame tree, this astounding flowering tree with big red flowers is wildly popular in South Florida, as it provides lovely shade from the hot summer sun. The clustered blossoms last for more than a month, usually appearing between May and July. The royal poinciana can grow up to 40 feet tall and can spread up to 60 feet wide, so you’ll definitely want to plant it in a spot with plenty of breathing room.
Giant Apostles Iris: With rich indigo blossoms and a height of 4 feet, this jumbo iris is a perennial garden plant that commands attention. If you live on the coast, it’s a fantastic option for planting along the perimeter of your fence, because it’s highly tolerant of a range of soil conditions — particularly sandy soil that’s been sprinkled with salt spray from the ocean. While they are fairly drought tolerant, it’s wise to water them generously for those first few weeks after planting so their roots can get established.
Dahlia: The largest species of dahlia can grow up to 4 feet tall and have double flowers that grow up to 1 foot in diameter. These outdoor plants may need to be staked to stay upright, and they look best at the back of your garden as a border with shorter plants in front. Plant the tubers in early spring, and they’ll burst into beautiful blooms by late summer. In colder zones, dahlias tubers need to be lifted and stored over winter, but in zones warmer than 9, they can remain in the ground.
Pineapple: For a large corner plant that adds some fun and whimsy to your landscape, plant a pineapple in your yard! The spiky pineapple fruit nestled in the middle of a lush, leafy fountain of foliage is kind of wacky but fully adorable. They like at least 6 hours of direct sun every day, so growing them outdoors is your best bet. However, they are technically only reliable for growing outdoors in zones 11 and 12, and since we’re zone 10b here in Fort Lauderdale, you may want to consider planting them in a container in case the weather takes an unexpected chilly turn. That way, you can safely bring your pineapple inside until things warm up again.
Whether you want to add a big splash of color outdoors or indoors, Living Color has a phenomenal assortment of plants in our greenhouse. Come stop by the shop, and our experts will help you find the most head-turning, jaw-dropping, eye-popping plants imaginable!