Homes can get extremely hot during the summer, so many people have an air conditioning unit to keep them cool. But what about indoor plants—can you keep them cool with air conditioning? And if so, can they survive in such a condition?
Most indoor plants can survive in an air-conditioned room under proper care and placement. Some plants are better suited for an air-conditioned room, such as Air plants, Monstera plants, and Pothos plants.
In this article, I’ll discuss how your indoor plants can survive in an air-conditioned room, plants that are okay in an air-conditioned room, and those that don’t do well in such a setting. Let’s jump right in!
Taking Care of Your Indoor Plants in an Air-Conditioned Room
When using air conditioning in your home with plants, it’s essential to know that this can potentially cause harm to some plants. Using an air conditioner makes the air dryer and causes the temperature in the room to fluctuate, which can bother some plants.
For your indoor plants to coexist with your air conditioner, here are some things you’ll need to stay on top of to help your plants stay healthy and happy:
- Watering: Make sure you stick to your watering schedule for all indoor plants. Property hydration is crucial, especially when dealing with cool, dry air. You might also want to mist their leaves with some water to ensure they get enough moisture.
- Humidity: Plants usually prefer a more humid environment. A moist environment is hard to achieve with the air conditioning blasting on them. So, mist your plants or group them to increase the humidity around them. You can also get a humidifier and place it in the room with the indoor plants to add moisture back into the air.
- Placement: You don’t want to put your plants directly in front of the air conditioning. Try putting them somewhere in the room farthest from the air conditioner.
Ensuring that you do the above tips can help your plants survive the air conditioning, and you survive the summer heat.
Signs That the Air Conditioning Is Hurting Your Plants
It would be best to watch for any physical signs that may tell you that your plants and the air conditioning aren’t getting along.
Here are the signs you should look out for:
- Drooping leaves/petals
- Brown edges or tips on leaves
- Yellowing leaves
- Leaves drying out
- Flowers stop blooming/no new growth
Suppose you notice any of the above. Then remove your plants from the air-conditioned room. Some of these signs are irreversible, so you must stop them from worsening. You must also ensure that you’ve watered your plants correctly and ensure they don’t have any fungus or bugs causing these symptoms.
Plants That Are Better Suited for Air Conditioning
Various plants do very well in air-conditioned rooms because they can either adapt to most environments or like the cooler climate. The following plants will do alright in an air-conditioned room:
- Air Plants: These plants come in various sizes and require little to no care. They’re highly adaptable and don’t need soil to survive. Occasionally, you’ll want to mist them with water and ensure they get proper sunlight.
- Monstera Plant: Also known as the “swiss cheese plant,” the Monstera is another plant that’ll do alright in an air-conditioned room. This plant is easy to care for and can get pretty big as it ages. Make sure the plant gets indirect light during the day.
- Pothos Plant: This plant has heart-shaped leaves and is known for doing well in most environments. Even though Pothos are considered tropical plants, they do very well indoors with air conditioning. Water your plant once a week and provide indirect light, and it’s good to go.
- ZZ Plant: The ZZ plant is known for its low maintenance. It has glossy oval leaves and can adapt to most environments. This plant is recommended for many beginners because it requires very little attention. The ZZ plant prefers bright indirect light.
- Prickly Pear: This cactus can quickly adapt to various environments, and different temperatures won’t be a problem. The Prickly Pear grows cute little flowers and likes to be exposed to the full sunlight several hours a day. This plant requires minimal watering, so it’s relatively easy to care for.
- Aglaonema Red: This plant is a beautiful deep green with red or pink leaves. It’s very low maintenance and can adapt to almost any environment. The Aglaonema Red is tolerant of air conditioning. Just make sure you don’t put it directly in the path of the air conditioning unit.
Plants That Don’t Do Well in an Air-Conditioned Room
According to the Laid Back Gardener, some plants have numerous breathing pores (stomata) on their leaves, causing them to dry out quicker in dry air conditions.
Usually, plants that are angiosperms have a higher number of stomata. You don’t want to pick these particular plants to have indoors. Also, some plants need high humidity in their environment to survive; therefore, the air conditioning can be horrible for them.
The following plants won’t do well in an air-conditioned room:
- Orchids: They have a high density of stomata. Therefore, being in an environment with intense cool and dry air would be harmful to them. They would dry out very fast. And considering their large number of stomata, a humidifier wouldn’t fix the problem.
- African Violet: This plant is another angiosperm and shouldn’t be kept indoors with air conditioning. According to the Healthy House Plant, this plant requires a high humidity environment as well, even though it can tolerate an environment that’s only half humid.
- Peace Lily: This plant has many stomata, so it perspires quite a lot. So, when in cooler, dryer temperatures, the leaves on your lily may start to droop. It’s best not to have a peace lily in an environment that isn’t more warm and humid if you want it to look healthy.
- Fern: This plant is native to tropical regions and is a very tolerable houseplant. However, it is not tolerant to dry conditions; ferns like their soil to stay moist. Moist soil may be hard to maintain in an air-conditioned room. So, if it’s challenging to keep the soil moist, the fern may start to dry out.
- Bromeliads: These tropical plants like to be in a very humid environment. In fact, most indoor homes, even without air conditioning, don’t have the proper amount of humidity. So, if you add air conditioning, the Bromeliads really won’t do well.
- Maranta: A Maranta plant has beautiful striped leaves and prefers high humidity. The growth can be stunted when the plant is put in low humidity; thus, the leaves will look dull. So, this would not be a good option for an air-conditioned room.
Many indoor plants can survive in an air-conditioned room when taken care of properly. Placement, watering, and humidity are the main things to focus on when keeping plants alive in air conditioning.
There are several signs to look for when deciding if air conditioning is negatively affecting your plants, such as; drooping leaves, yellow leaves, dried-out leaves, brown leaves, and stunted growth.
Some plants do well in any environment, while others should not be put in a room with air conditioning because of their high humidity requirements. Always do your research on your plants.
If you found this guide helpful, I recommend my complete guide on caring for houseplants. I’ll discuss the many tips and tricks for keeping your plants happy and healthy: How To Care for Houseplants (The Ultimate Guide)