Column: Indoor plants—faux or no?


Commentary by Krista Bocko

There’s something about greenery that graces interior spaces with their touch of beauty and alive-ness that makes indoor plants so tempting to own. And there’s also the thing about keeping the plants alive, which strikes fear into the hearts of many.

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Bocko’s fiddle leaf fig. (Photo by Krista Bocko)

Maybe that’s dramatic, but enough poor plants have died at my hands that I gave up on having indoor plants for years. And then, fiddle leaf fig envy struck. I wanted one, and couldn’t find one. But that caused me to look at other plants, and I kind of loved some of them, so I slowly stuck my toe back in the water and bought one here, one there, and now I have four (real) plants that are living under my care. And, one of them is a fiddle leaf fig, which I found at Home Depot once. I even hacked a little stand for it. I love this thing.

Along the way of bringing plants into my house, I have found that there are some very realistic faux plants that look absolutely great. I confess, I was a faux plant snob before. You can’t blame me, considering I grew up in the era of fake ivy and ficus trees. But there are good faux plants and bad faux plants. And good ones make all the difference. If you feel you can’t keep a real plant alive or want to put plants in a room without much natural light, I encourage you to check out some of the options available. I have gotten some at Target, Hobby Lobby and IKEA so far. There are even faux fiddle leafs! I would like one of those too, but I’ll have to save up for it, as they’re kind of spendy.

If you go for live plants, research them and try to give them the conditions they thrive best in, as well as taking care not to over or under water them. I think this is one of the biggest mistakes. They also will likely need to be repotted, so keep that in mind too.

Here’s to plants enlivening our living spaces!