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The best artificial plants to buy in 2023

Inject some life and colour into your home with our pick of the best artificial plants you can buy

Whether you blame Pinterest, TikTok or the WFH revolution, house plants are a blossoming trend that looks set to endure. But while it’s fun to tend to real plants, nurturing seedlings until they become great blooming centrepieces, not everyone has the time, temperament or inclination.

The best artificial plants are a fantastic alternative to the real thing, introducing bursts of colour and freshness into the drabbest of rooms. They’re also a budget-friendly option: real popular fiddle-leaf fig trees can cost around £100, for example, and rare variations of Monsteras or Bonsai can cost thousands of pounds. Artificial plants, meanwhile, tend to be made predominantly out of plastic, which makes them both affordable and relatively lightweight – perfect for moving around your home.

We’ve selected some of the best artificial plants you can buy at the moment, so read on for our handy buying guide followed by our top picks.

Best artificial plants: At a glance

How to choose the best artificial plants for you

When purchasing faux plants, there are plenty of factors to take into consideration. What size would you like your greenery to be: a towering, jungly behemoth, or a small, self-contained pot plant? What kind of aura are you trying to create: laid back beachy vibes, or urban bohemia? Read on for our list of things to consider when investing in greenery built to endure.

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What size artificial plants are you looking for?

When it comes to artificial plants, the sky’s the limit: being man-made, you can source them as minuscule or as gargantuan as you like. It’s worth considering that very dinky artificial plants can look a bit twee, and are a swallowing hazard for babies and pets, while enormous faux plants have a larger surface area to be examined, so it can be difficult to find inexpensive ones that look realistic.

Weigh up the space you have available: are you looking to fill the corner of an expansive living room, or are you a student with a stubby window sill to decorate? If the former, artificial plants in the region of 80cm-120cm high can uplift the most dreary of corners. Most larger artificial plants come in small plastic pots, allowing you to accessorise with a larger ceramic or terracotta pot better suited to your space (check your local garden centre for bargains). If you’re after a more compact plant, slim cacti or snake plants with a smaller diameter are great options for perching atop shelves or window sills.

What style of artificial plants are you after?

In tandem with size, it’s important to think about the style of artificial plant you’re after (and the two more often than not inform each other). Monsteras, fiddle-leaf fig trees or palm trees, for example, are popular larger styles of artificial plants, offering zingy greens, glossy leaves and striking silhouettes. Monsteras are a coveted urban style, great for nestling at the foot of bookshelves or mid-century side tables. Palms, meanwhile, offer a taste of tropical paradise – and many are suitable for indoor and outdoor usage, bringing some escapism to your back garden.

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When it comes to smaller plants, options abound: you can opt for a western-inspired cactus (with rubberised spikes), a willowy eucalyptus plant with trailing leaves for whimsical draping, or a more artistic reimagining (see Sophie Conran’s embossed metal offerings). The key is envisioning the aura you’d like to create in your space: whether it’s mid-century modern, Parisian parlour or eclectic urban jungle.

How much should you spend on artificial plants?

Unlike some real plants, artificial plants needn’t cost the earth. Not only does the upfront cost tend to be less (artificial plants are often made of plastic), the upkeep is minimal; you won’t need to fork out for watering cans, plant misters or food, nor will you need to solicit a housesitter when you go on holiday.

Artificial plants start at just a few pounds, and though they can go up to hundreds of pounds, there’s no real need to spend that much. If you’re looking for a large, well-made plant to brighten up a room, there’s rarely a need to spend over £60. Decorative plants, particularly those that have been handmade, can cost a bit more, but you’re paying for the artistry and the craftsmanship. When it comes to investing in these trinkets, it’s a case of subjectivity and longevity: consider how much joy they will bring you and how long they will last.

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The best artificial plants you can buy in 2023

1. Ikea Fejka eucalyptus potted plant: Best artificial plant for the bathroom

Price: £7 | Buy now from IkeaThis self-contained, sage-green potted plant from Ikea is the perfect wipe-clean addition to any washroom. It’s small enough not to feel imposing in even the most compact of bathrooms; its 12cm diameter and 0.33kg weight mean it can be placed atop shelves or wider window sills or even hung from the shower rail, while its 58cm trail of leaves can be artfully placed, draped or wound in a place of your choosing. The leaves resemble eucalyptus, meaning you could even match your bathroom products to the plant itself, for added verisimilitude.

Key details – Material: Polyethylene plastic (plant), polypropylene plastic and concrete (pot); Height: 58cm; Diameter: 12cm; Weight: 0.33kg; Care instructions: Wipe clean with a dry cloth

Buy now from Ikea

2. Habitat Mid Century Artificial Snake Plant: Best realistic artificial plant

Price: £20 | Buy now from HabitatWith its understated mustard pot, this 55cm-tall snake plant from Habitat makes a lovely addition to any side or dining table. Its horizontally protruding leaves are emblazoned with a delicate and varied botanical pattern – part of the attention to detail that makes this plant so realistic. All you need to do to keep it looking fresh is to give it the odd dust.

Key details – Material: Plastic; Height: 40cm; Diameter: 12cm; Weight: N/A; Care instructions: Dust to clean

Buy now from Habitat

3. Sophie Conran Handmade Flower Sculpture Collection: Best decorative artificial plant

Price: £120 for three | Buy now from Sophie ConranOriginally retailing at £68 per plant, you can now snap up this trio of handmade sculptures for £120 in the summer sale (down from £196). The collection includes an inky purple hyacinth, a martagon lily in vibrant orange peppered with rusty brown seeds, and a dusky pink digitalis (otherwise known as the foxglove). The creations are handmade from embossed metal, and emerge rigidly from stylish and versatile terracotta pots. Place them lovingly in different rooms of the house, or gather them together for an understated but show-stopping centrepiece.

Key details – Material: Embossed metal; Height: Varies according to model (29cm–34cm); Width: Varies according to model (14cm–15.5cm); Depth: Varies according to model (11cm–13cm); Weight: 430g each; Care instructions: Dust with a dry soft cloth

Buy now from Sophie Conran

4. 100cm Artificial Monstera: Best large artificial plant

Price: £40 | Buy now from Amazon

If you’re looking for a more sizeable artificial plant, it’s hard to go wrong with a monstera, otherwise known as the Swiss cheese plant because of its holey leaves. Real monsteras tend to have glossy leaves, so the artificial shine you get with some faux plants won’t look too conspicuous. This consideration is all the more important when you’re investing in a bigger piece: a larger surface area means a greater chance of eagle-eyed visitors cottoning on. This 100cm monstera from Amazon will inject any room with a dose of zingy, green vibrancy, and makes for some aesthetically pleasing silhouettes in the sun. The stems are wired and can be moulded into positions of your choosing.

If you’re after a slightly bigger model, this 120cm faux Monstera from La Redoute stands tall as a suitable alternative, and is now a very reasonable £43 in the sale (down from £79).

Key details – Material: Plastic; Height: 100cm (varies slightly according to model); Width: 20cm (varies slightly according to model); Depth: 20cm (varies slightly according to model); Weight: 3.44kg; Care instructions: Dust

Buy now from Amazon

5. George Artificial Palm Tree Plant: Best budget artificial plant

Price: £15 | Buy now from George at AsdaAt just £15, this artificial palm tree plant from George at Asda is a real bargain. At 80cm high, it’s imposing enough to feel like a statement piece, but with a 13cm width and depth when boxed, it’s slim enough to fit in a child’s or student bedroom. If you want an artificial plant that will transport you to a place of balmy evening walks on the beach without breaking the bank, this instant staple offers a lot of bang for your buck. If you’d like a bigger model, there’s a more substantial 110cm version available for £30.

Key details – Material: Plastic and cement; Height: 80cm (varies slightly according to model); Width: 13cm (varies slightly according to model); Depth: 13cm (varies slightly according to model); Weight: 3.44kg; Care instructions: Dust

Buy now from George at Asda

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