Since the start of the pandemic, staring down the face of existential dread, Millennials have turned to the simple comfort of watching things grow: in 2020, the Census Bureau saw gardening revenue double to 8.79%, and the houseplant craze has only popularized further in the years since. During the height of the pandemic, plant stores saw their volumes in daily orders increase tenfold. Now as Gen Z’ers are leaving home and coming into their own, they too are following the trend. In an effort to adapt to the ‘new normal’, Millennials and Gen Z’ers have found refuge in the ever changing and growing, yet still invariable nature of plants. Plant life now adorns apartment living rooms, the interior backdrop of zoom calls and now our Instagram feed– and being consistent with the nature of Instagram, certain plants have gained special notoriety. This has led HouseFresh to do some amazing research, tracking the trends of the 230 most Insta-worthy houseplants, to find out the favorites among plant owner’s from every country around the world.
Monstera deliciosa– deriving its name (its literal meaning being ‘delicious monster’) from its sizable, many-holed leaves, and edible fruits– is the favorite in Costa Rica, Canada, and the United States.
Mimosa pudica, known also as the sensitive plant or shame plant, will literally ‘shy away,’ or retreat at any touch. But in Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and Belize, this shy little guy still gets much deserved love and attention, being the most popular houseplant for its prized lilac bloom.
The blue passionflower, with its climbing foliage of variegated leaves and its curious, saucer-like flower, is the favorite in Argentina, Colombia, Uruguay, and Venezuela.
While the passionflower is technically the national flower of Paraguay, Paruguans– along with Puerto Ricans– have adopted the kalanchoe daigremontiana as their favorite. This plant has rightly earned the epic sounding nickname of ‘mother of thousands’ for the seemingly endless plantlets that sprout from its leaves.
Ten countries across Europe have fallen for the aptly named Swiss Cheese plant, whose holes have evolved to filter and distribute light evenly among its vast canopy.
From Switzerland, traveling south and east to the countries of Bosnia & Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia, and Moldova, English Ivy is the favorite as it can thrive in only moderate light and is beloved for its variegated leaves.
Middle East and Central Asia
So popular, the exact origins of nerium oleander remains elusive. Archaeological evidence traces the oleander’s popularity in ancient Pompeii, while also finding our mysterious friend well-acclimated to the cool English weather. Plant lovers in Oman, Kuwait, and Jordan, where the oleander is especially popular, seem to be content with the mystery.
Palestine loves pachypodium lamerei, the unusual succulent that will swell with water within its wide, spiked stem that carries its many long, swaying leaves.
East Asia and Oceania
Japan is the only country to have adopted the curious, kalanchoe tomentosa as the national favorite. Unlike it’s Blooming Kalanchoe cousin, this plant is fuzzy and also called the Panda Plant! This succulent actually prefers the cool comfort that comes from being indoors. Let them inside!
Eleven countries in the Oceanic region have also adopted the monstera deliciosa as their favorite but since the start of the pandemic, the market has been shifting: rarer plants are now more coveted, and many plant enthusiasts are on the lookout for the strange and fascinating to add to their collection.
Lantana Camara has divided plant lovers into two factions. Some consider the Camara a welcome addition to their home, citing its brilliant explosion of yellows, purples and blues, as well as its fruity aroma. Some consider it a weed that smells like straight cat-pee. Still, our controversial friend is the favorite in eleven African countries.
Cape Verde loves the tall and extravagant ming aralia, a perennial suitable for the art of bonsai (‘plant training’). Even though it rarely blooms, the aralia’s fern-like leaves make it a handsome home addition.
Compounding the already uncertain world with an ongoing pandemic, it’s no wonder that many plants are finding homes amongst millennials and Z’ers, elivening our spaces and speaking to the reliability of simple pleasures. Social media allows us to trace exactly how this trend has shaped and formed.
Like many trends, the issue of sustainability, and the seedier aspects of capitalism, can rear its head. Experts suggest you buy locally, avoid retailers that use peat, avoid plastic pots in favor of one's made from recyclable materials.
Thanks to HouseFresh for this awesome information - See more on their site here. All photos pulled from this fantastic article.