West Window Wonders : Top 10 Houseplants to Thrive

Team McFly Sep 24, 2023
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plant sitting by western window
Table of Contents
  1. Best House Plants for Western Windows
    1. Introduction
    2. 1. Urn Plant - Aechmea Fasciata
    3. 2. Norfolk Island Pine - Araucaria Heterophylla
    4. 3. Parlor Palm - Chamaedorea Elegans
    5. 4. Swiss Cheese Plant - Monstera Deliciosa
    6. 5. Coleus - Coleus Blumei
    7. 6. Holiday Cactus - Schlumbergera x buckleyi
    8. 7. Mint:
    9. How to Take Care of and Grow a Mint Plant
    10. How to Grow Mint Outside
    11. Keeping Mint Healthy and Vigorous
    12. Mint Harvesting and Freezing for Use in Recipes
    13. Care Instructions for Indoor Mint Plants
    14. 8. Tiger Jaws - Faucaria tigrina
    15. Developing Tiger Jaws
    16. Growing Tiger's Jaw
    17. Maintaining a Tiger Jaw Succulent
    18. 9. Ponytail Palm - Beaucarnea recurvata
    19. 10. Zebra Plant - aphelandra squarrosa
    20. Climate and Lighting
    21. Pests and illness
    22. Mushroom Gnats
    23. Leaf-Drop and Leaf-Wilt
    24. How to Choose a Potting Mix

Best House Plants for Western Windows


The right plants for a western-facing window should consider the light and heat this region can receive. Windows facing west often receive direct sunlight for most of the day, which can be abrasive and intense.

However, the right plants may transform a window with a Western orientation into a healthy and beautiful green sanctuary. From succulents that enjoy the sun to ferns that can tolerate shade, many plants can thrive in this area of ample light. In this piece, we'll examine some of the top plants to choose from for a western-facing window to help you create a lush and flourishing indoor garden.

1. Urn Plant - Aechmea Fasciata

The amount of light and heat this area can receive should be considered while choosing the appropriate plants for a western-facing window. Most of the day's direct sunshine, which can be harsh and powerful, normally hits windows with a Western orientation.

However, the appropriate plants may turn a window with a Western orientation into a stunning and healthy green haven. In this area of abundant light, a wide variety of plants can flourish, from ferns that can tolerate shade to sun-loving succulents. In this article, we'll look at some of the best plants for a western-facing window to establish a lush and healthy indoor garden.

2. Norfolk Island Pine - Araucaria Heterophylla

You can grow the conifer Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria Heterophylla) as a houseplant indoors. It is a tree that many gardeners find beautiful due to its distinctive, symmetrical shape.

The Araucariaceae family, which includes Norfolk Island pines, is found in temperate South Pacific coastal cliffs and interior rainforests. The expression "different leaves" alludes to how the morphology of juvenile and mature Norfolk Island pine leaves changes, as indicated by its scientific name, heterophylla.

Maintenance and Care

Norfolk Island pines are found in regions with plenty of direct sunshine since they need it to grow. But be cautious because too much sun exposure could damage the plant by burning the foliage.

When you feel the earth beginning to dry out, water the Norfolk Island pine. The saucer should be emptied to keep the water flowing into the roots and then gently placed back into position.

The yellow needles may come off, and the plant's general health may suffer from overwatering. Additionally, this tree must be repotted every two to three years to safeguard the roots.

Any room in your house will have personality and style thanks to the popular houseplant Araucaria Heterophylla Norfolk Island Pine. It adds beauty to your holiday decorations and requires little maintenance.

Select a premium potting soil that closely replicates the environmental conditions required for outdoor growth to get the most out of your Araucaria Heterophylla. A slightly acidic potting mix helps the soil retain moisture and controls illness. Maintaining a moderate soil moisture level will promote healthy roots and strong foliage.

3. Parlor Palm - Chamaedorea Elegans

Growing and maintaining this plant:

The Parlor Palm (Chamaedorea elegans), a common indoor plant, is a native of Central and South America. It belongs to the Arecaceae family of palms and is revered for its air filter capacity. Additionally, it is a non-toxic plant that helps purify the air in your home, making it safe to have around kids and animals.

Conditions of Light:

Like many indoor plants, the Parlor Palm thrives in less light. It's ideal for locations with little sunlight and a wise choice for residents of chilly regions.


Give your Parlor Palm a thorough soak once a week to promote strong growth. Keep the soil consistently moist, but refrain from sopping the plants. If you're unsure of how much water your soil requires, use a moisture meter.

Ph Soil

Plant your Parlor Palm in loamy, well-drained soil for maximum growth. These characteristics necessitate soil with a fairly alkaline pH and composed of porous materials like peat.

Plant Relocation and Pot Placement

Your Parlor Palm might need replanted sometimes, just like any other plant. The plant will soon outgrow its current container, so you'll need a new one.

4. Swiss Cheese Plant - Monstera Deliciosa

The gorgeous tropical Monstera deliciosa, the Swiss cheese plant, and the split-leaf philodendron are occasionally rather popular for homes. It is a Central American rainforest native climber with enormous heart-shaped leaves covered in numerous deep holes.

If Monstera deliciosa is on your list of potential new houseplants, keep in mind that it requires lots of light and water to grow. A west-facing window is one of the greatest places to grow this plant, even though not all windows are created equally in light.

The season and the weather dictate changes in the lighting for Monstera Deliciosa. This plant, however, typically requires at least six hours of direct sunlight per day.

Place your Monstera close to an east or west-facing window to get the most light. The leaves won't dry and turn yellow under this strong sunshine.

Avoid overwatering to prevent the plant's leaves from turning yellow and drooping. Yellowing Monstera deliciosa leaves can be restored to their original green color by repotting the plant in fresh soil.

Please choose a new pot for repotting at least as wide as tall. Choose a premium soil mixture if you want your Monstera deliciosa to thrive after being replanted.

Coleus Blumei

5. Coleus - Coleus Blumei

Getting started:

The best way to grow your Coleus blumei is to take stem cuttings. Cut off a 4-inch section of the vigorous-looking stem tip right beneath a leaf node and root it by soaking it in a rooting hormone compound before transferring it into a potting mix.


To encourage healthy growth, Coleus Blumei has to be grown in your garden or a pot. The plant needs sunshine, adequate soil, water, and temperature.


Indirect sunlight that doesn't burn the leaves of coleus is ideal. While some contemporary cultivars are developed to tolerate the sun, most still prefer some shade to preserve their color and maintain healthy leaves.


To avoid soil rot, use a well-draining potting mix with organic content for outdoor planting. Many gardeners mulch coleus plants with wood chips to help the soil retain moisture longer, and most commercial potting mixes are fine.


For luxuriant, continuous development, coleus plants require moderate irrigation regularly. Long dry periods impede growth and make the foliage yellow or brown.


Warm temperatures (over 65° F) are optimal for indoor cultivation. Avoid colder climates since they might stress plants and encourage sickness.


Maintaining humidity at or above 40% is crucial for tropical indoor plants. Coleus blumei is a great option for a tropical houseplant because, unlike other varieties, its velvety leaves don't droop or turn crispy when wet.

6. Holiday Cactus - Schlumbergera x buckleyi

Brazil-born Christmas cacti (Schlumbergera x buckleyi) are a common indoor flowering plant. They are fantastic plants to raise in your home or give as gifts because they are simple to maintain and propagate.

Schlumbergera russelliana and truncata were crossed to form the Christmas cactus, a hybrid plant. This hybrid cactus originated in damp, high-altitude woods in southeast Brazil. It is a tropical jungle cactus.

Schlumbergera x buckleyi, a genus with more than 200 known cultivars, is primarily recognized by its tubular flowers, which have trumpet-shaped shapes and come in various colors, from white through pink to fire engine red. During the winter, these blooms bloom for seven to eight weeks.

planting plants

Growing and Caring for a Cactus

A Christmas cactus should be grown and cared for in a setting that is similar to that environment. Since these tropical cacti are epiphytes, they don't normally grow in soil but rather in the shallow organic matter that accumulates on rocks and in tree trunk cracks. For optimal growth, they require moderate watering and bright, indirect light. They love temperatures below 50°F and a high humidity level of 50% to 60%, so they shouldn't be placed close to heat registers, an exterior door, or a window.

They are simple to rebloom, especially if you keep them in a dark spot for six to eight weeks in the late summer and early fall. It would help if you waited until the buds have formed before removing them from the dark treatment because they need cold, wet conditions to promote bud production.

Propagating a Cactus

A Christmas cactus' stem can be used as a source for cuttings that will grow into new plants. The cut end of the cutting needs to be inserted into a potting mix of three parts: peat moss, one part loam, and one part coarse sand or perlite, about half an inch thick. After the cuttings have taken root, they can be potted into their soil mixture or used to cover bare areas on existing plants.

How to Know if You Have a Christmas Cactus or a Thanksgiving Cactus

When given a new cactus, the first thing to do is to determine its species. This conclusion can be made using the phylloclades, stem segments, and the shape and color of the flowers.

Thanksgiving cacti have pointed stem segments, whereas Christmas cacti have scalloped stem segments. Christmas cacti feature flowers that are more spherical and symmetrical (actinomorphic) than Thanksgiving cacti, which have flowers with an ovary that is curved.

Knowing these differences will enable you to distinguish between a genuine Christmas cactus and the several cultivars and hybrids of the more common truncate species.

Most cacti can tolerate little heat in colder climates, but they could freeze to death if you don't take particular measures. A climate with year-round temperatures of about 50 degrees Fahrenheit will be ideal for your Christmas cactus.

7. Mint:

Mint is a hardy, adaptable plant that requires little maintenance. It can be cultivated inside on windowsills and balcony ledges, in the garden, or as a houseplant. It works well in various culinary preparations, from teas to mojitos.

How to Take Care of and Grow a Mint Plant

A mint plant requires frequent watering and lots of sunlight. As long as the soil is rich and wet but not soggy, it can grow in most soil types. Please amend the soil with some aged compost and some organic matter to boost the porosity and drainage.

How to Grow Mint Outside

Plant mint seeds in containers in the spring or fall, and when any chance of frost has passed, move them into your garden. Cuttings or divisions initiated in cool weather, spring or fall, can also be propagated.

It is better to transplant plants into bottomless containers buried in the ground so they cannot wander into other garden areas. For about four weeks, keep pots in a protected area to give the stems and roots time to acclimate to the soil after any chance of frost has passed into the garden. Early in the spring, established root and stem cuttings can also be planted in the garden.

Keeping Mint Healthy and Vigorous

Fresh leaves from a well-kept mint plant will be abundant and available for harvesting whenever needed all year long. To prevent the leaves from turning bitter and wilted, it is a good idea to clip the tips of the leaves from time to time. Additionally, this will promote the development of more tasty new leaves on top of the older ones.

cleaning up the mint

Use needle-nose pruners or herb scissors once or twice a week to cut away weak, dead, or damaged stems and branches. This will encourage the growth of new leaves and ensure a healthy, robust mint plant.

Trimming any weeds that sprout around the plant's base during the winter is also a good idea. By concentrating on growing the big leaves used for culinary purposes, the plant can stay healthier and continue to grow.

Mint Harvesting and Freezing for Use in Recipes

Before using the leaves in dishes or beverages, slicing them into little pieces is a good idea. By doing this, you preserve the flavor and scent of the entire plant, ensuring that none of it is lost when you freeze it for later use.

The Burpee Mint Julep Collection is a must-have if you enjoy mint. Each type in the package has a different flavor to give your mint cocktail a bit more excitement.

Mint may be grown in zones 5 to 8 because it is a hardy plant. Additionally, it can survive drought and a few hours of shade.

Care Instructions for Indoor Mint Plants

Positioning a mint plant indoors in a bright location that receives at least three to four hours of direct sunshine each day is preferable. To ensure that the plant receives enough sunshine to support healthy growth if you reside in a cooler region, you may wish to rotate the plant as needed.

It is best to wash the leaves of the mint plant completely before eating them because it is not a particularly hygienic plant. This will lessen the likelihood of pests like whiteflies and blackflies attacking it. If you notice any infestation indications, spraying the leaves with an insecticide or fungicide is also a good idea.

8. Tiger Jaws - Faucaria tigrina

Tundra Faucaria Tiger Jaws, often called shark Jaws or Tierbekvygie, are succulent plants resembling an animal's open jaws. They are indigenous to South Africa and frequently grow in subtropical deserts among rocks and clay soil. They make excellent houseplants and require little upkeep.

Growing Tiger Jaws

You must find a sunny spot for your plant and give it a lot of water year-round to develop Faucaria tigrina. Although it is a succulent, it can endure drought conditions. For optimal results, give the plant a regular watering schedule.

When the potting mix of the plant starts to dry, take it out of the pot and let it drain fully before watering it again. These succulents are susceptible to rot, which will be less likely.

Developing Tiger Jaws

A tiger jaw succulent can be multiplied through seeds or offsets, which are leaves that split off from the primary plant. Use offsets to grow new plants by replanting the cuttings in new soil.

These plants may grow in a wide range of soil types, although they prefer soil that drains well. Use cactus potting soil or build your own by combining sterilized potting soil, compost that isn't peat-based, and coarse sand.

Faucaria tigrina grows best in soils rich in organic matter and good drainage. When placing the dirt in the planter, it's crucial to avoid soaking it because doing so will stress and kill the tiger's jaw.

Additionally, it's crucial to keep the plant out of the rain, as this might result in the growth of mold and mildew on the leaves of the tiger jaw. Place your tiger jaw in a cool interior area during the winter, such as a basement or garage, to protect it from frost.

Growing Tiger's Jaw

A tiger's jaw's broad, triangular leaves include delicate, curving teeth that funnel water toward the plant's roots. These spikes aid the tiger jaw's ability to absorb rainfall, representing an evolutionary adaption.

They require little upkeep and can withstand any climate. As long as you give them plenty of sunlight and water, they are excellent container plants that may be planted outside.

Maintaining a Tiger Jaw Succulent

Like all succulents, they require frequent watering to be healthy and keep their fresh appearance. When the soil is completely dry, take the tiger jaw out of its container and let it completely drain before watering it once more. The optimum periods to water this plant are in the spring and the fall; during the summer, watering should be limited to a few times per week.

Use diluted plant food to water your tiger jaw succulent twice a day, and you can sprinkle it with water using a spray bottle. Since this plant will stop growing if it gets too dry, it is especially helpful if you live in a hot area.

9. Ponytail Palm - Beaucarnea recurvata

Growing and Care a Ponytail Palm

One of the simplest indoor plants to cultivate and care for is the ponytail palm, or Beaucarnea recurvata as it is more frequently called. As long as you don't overwater it, it is a tolerant plant that can endure neglect.

The caudex, a thick, swelling stem at the plant's base that stores water and helps it withstand dry spells, is the most intriguing feature of the ponytail palm. The Ponytail Palm is an excellent indoor succulent plant because of its characteristics.


A Ponytail palm should be planted in a tiny cactus potting mix, as with many succulents. Utilizing a container with a drainage hole will allow any extra water to be drained away, which is another crucial consideration.

Ponytail palms are known for having dense root systems, so a simple method to prevent this issue is to pick a smaller container than you might think you need and fill it with well-draining soil. This will guarantee that the soil doesn't stay wet for an extended period and stop any issues from developing.


As a potted indoor plant, a ponytail palm will flourish in lots of light. If you don't overexpose it, it tolerates moderate sunlight but likes brilliant indirect light.


For the winter, a Ponytail palm should be kept at a cool room temperature (50–55°F/10–13°C). It's also advisable to avoid setting it up overnight close to chilly windows because the temps can harm the leaves.


Move the plant to a larger pot whenever it reaches the point of becoming too huge for it. This will greatly simplify maintenance and give the plant more room to expand in height and girth.


A cactus or succulent fertilizer should be applied every few months, but avoid overfeeding the plant as this can lead to insect and disease issues. During the growing seasons, a liquid cactus fertilizer should be sprayed once or twice a month, diluted to half the suggested amount.

Color and Leaves

The ponytail palm has beautiful green foliage. Even while they lose some of their beauty as they age, they have a ribbon-like shape, and the foliage is extremely lovely when it's young.

It's advisable to touch the leaf with dry hands because some people find its serrated leaves to be slippery. If you do contact them with damp hands, you risk cutting or hurting yourself.

feeding an umbrella palm

Ponytail palms are slow-growing indoor plants that require only mild fertilization once a month during the spring and summer growing seasons. Use a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer, such as 10-10-10, at half the amount specified on the label.

10. Zebra Plant - aphelandra squarrosa

The Zebra Plant is one of the more difficult indoor plants to care for, but it's worth it!

This plant will repay you with magnificent blossoms and gleaming green foliage if you are ready to invest the time and effort necessary. The most prevalent type of aphelandra squarrosa has opposite pairs of spear-shaped leaves with distinct creamy white veins and bright yellow flowers that emerge from a spike of waxy, golden bracts.

Some types are more uncommon, such as "Snow White," which has leaves that are a darker green color with white veins, and "April's Gold," which has bright scarlet-red blossoms.

Since zebra plants are indigenous to tropical rainforests, they need regular humidity and temperatures between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Avoid chilly drafts since they could stress the plant and prevent it from blossoming.

Climate and Lighting

Choose an indoor spot with enough bright light to ensure your zebra plant thrives. Although they may take some shade, direct sunlight is not advised because it might scorch the foliage.

Use lukewarm water to water frequently when the top 1 to 2 inches of soil feel dry, and keep the soil constantly moist. This is crucial because zebra plant blooms need a lot of water to thrive, which is why spring and summer are the busiest growing seasons.

To promote flowering and robust stems, fertilize often throughout the growing season with a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer. Dead flower bracts should be removed as soon as possible since they can cause the plant's lower leaves to sag and fall off.

Pests and illness

You should watch for a few insects that can kill zebra plants if you have some. Aphids, mealybugs, mites, scales, and thrips are a few of these. Safe Neem oil insecticides or treatments made specifically for each variety of bugs can be used to control them.

Mushroom Gnats

Some fungus gnats will overwinter in your pot since they like the zebra plant's damp, peaty soil. These can be eliminated by applying neem oil to the soil or luring them into a sticky trap.

Leaf-Drop and Leaf-Wilt

Leaf wilt and leaf loss are this plant's most frequent issues, and they happen when the soil gets too wet or too dry. The leaves can rot and die from water-soaked lesions if the soil is too moist; if left too dry, the leaves can shrink, turn brown, and fall off.

Most of the time, these issues may be avoided by keeping an eye on the soil and watering properly. Repot the plant as necessary to offer it new, well-draining soil if the issues persist.

How to Choose a Potting Mix

You can either buy pre-made potting soil or make your own. If you decide to make your own, consider combining peat moss, garden soil, and gritty sand or perlite. Due to its mild acidity, this blend will provide a nice base for a zebra plant.

Make sure to include a fertilizer with a high phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, and calcium content while making the potting mix. Select soil with a pH of 5.6 to 6.0 for the best results.

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Table of Contents
  1. Best House Plants for Western Windows
    1. Introduction
    2. 1. Urn Plant - Aechmea Fasciata
    3. 2. Norfolk Island Pine - Araucaria Heterophylla
    4. 3. Parlor Palm - Chamaedorea Elegans
    5. 4. Swiss Cheese Plant - Monstera Deliciosa
    6. 5. Coleus - Coleus Blumei
    7. 6. Holiday Cactus - Schlumbergera x buckleyi
    8. 7. Mint:
    9. How to Take Care of and Grow a Mint Plant
    10. How to Grow Mint Outside
    11. Keeping Mint Healthy and Vigorous
    12. Mint Harvesting and Freezing for Use in Recipes
    13. Care Instructions for Indoor Mint Plants
    14. 8. Tiger Jaws - Faucaria tigrina
    15. Developing Tiger Jaws
    16. Growing Tiger's Jaw
    17. Maintaining a Tiger Jaw Succulent
    18. 9. Ponytail Palm - Beaucarnea recurvata
    19. 10. Zebra Plant - aphelandra squarrosa
    20. Climate and Lighting
    21. Pests and illness
    22. Mushroom Gnats
    23. Leaf-Drop and Leaf-Wilt
    24. How to Choose a Potting Mix