Indoor plants with large leaves are an instant solution for all those who want to bring a tropical vibe and a breath of the exotic into their living or working space.
Those robust plants with sizable leaves, structure, shape, or color dominate the space, bringing a pleasant, almost mysterious, jungle-like atmosphere.
Moreover, just one such plant is enough to transform the room’s ambiance. They create a powerful effect without taking up a lot of your time.
One thing is certain: whether they grow as minimalist solitude corner plants or combined with other species, these giants are impossible not to notice!
13 Easy-Growing Big Leaf Plants
You might be surprised by the large selection of exotic big-leaf plants you can successfully grow at home! Thus, our list includes only a few that are easy to find and do not require much effort or extra care.
1. Alocasia Odora – Elephant Ear
Alocasia odora, also known as Elephant ear and Asian Taro, is a plant with magnificent, elongated heart-shaped leaves that can reach 3 feet in length and 1.5 feet in width!
Those large fresh green foliage with entire, slightly curling edges and pronounced veins grow on sturdy, tall stalks directly from the rhizome root in a vase-shaped form.
In addition to the monochromatic ones, there are also somewhat rarer variegated varieties with leaves that look like watercolors in shades of green, cream, and white.
Don’t be surprised if you notice drops of water that look like tears on the leaf’s tips! Your plant does not cry but gets rid of excess water through a natural mechanism known as guttation! Reduce watering if you want to avoid this phenomenon!
2. Strelitzia Reginae – Bird of paradise
Native to southern Africa, the Strelitzia reginae, or Bird of Paradise, is known worldwide for its unique flowers resembling the crane head.
Yet, this bushy plant is an attractive addition to any space, even when not in the flowering phase!
The large, almost 28 inches long banana-like oval, evergreen gray-green leaves provide interest all year round. They grow in a crisscross pattern forming a thick upright rosette up to 3, 5 feet tall.
For the plant to bloom, it needs a lot of sun, so it is ideal for glazed verandas and spaces with large glass portals.
Unlike most of the plants on this list, Strelitzia can withstand a few hours of direct sunlight. It means the plant will enjoy being near a south-facing window.
3. Alocasia Polly – African Mask
Alocasia Polly or Alocasia African Mask is another gem from the Alocasia genus that will delight you with its large, dark green leaves and pronounced light green veins and borders. This elegant and showy plant usually doesn’t grow over 3 feet tall and wide, but that’s enough to get noticed.
The new leaves appear rolled up and gradually unfold, revealing their shiny dark green lance-shaped form.
It is a typical tropical plant that does not tolerate low temperatures, direct sun, and dry air.
4. Monstera Deliciosa
Monstera deliciosa is a classic among large-leaved plants grown indoors in the middle of the 18th century when it was first brought to Europe.
Its dark green round leathery leaves with deep lobes are not just a whim of mother nature. It is a unique adaptation to the conditions in which these plants grow in their homeland. These slits let through the blows of heavy tropical rains without tearing, breaking, or damaging the leaves!
Its dark, leathery foliage contains plenty of chlorophyll, allowing the plant to grow in medium to low-light conditions!
But on the other hand, it got its name for a reason: When you get this plant, you can count on it as a 9-foot-tall, 5-foot-wide monster with leaves at least 18 inches in diameter in a few years.
And being an epiphytic climber also needs stable support because it cannot grow as a free-standing plant.
5. Philodendron Selloum -Tree Philodendron
If you want something unusual from the category of large-leaved plants, consider lacey Philodendron selloum!
This gorgeous plant, native to the subtropics of southern Africa, is adorned with huge, wide, deeply incised wavy leaves.
This epiphytic plant from the Aracea family initially grows in a bushy form. Still, it develops a central trunk over time and becomes a small house tree!
Even when very young, the plant needs at least a square foot of space as each leaf can grow up to 3 feet. It can eventually grow over 9 feet tall, but its size can be controlled by cutting the top.
FURTHER READING: How to Care for Philodendron Selloum (Tree Philodendron)
6. Livistona Rotundifolia – Footstool Palm
A slow-growing palm with spreading fan-like leaves and prickly trunk can grow up to 6 feet indoors, but it takes several decades!
The charming air purifier adapts well to indoor life and tolerates occasional neglect. In other words, it will not blame you if you occasionally forget to water it since it has a developed, long central root that allows it to withstand dry periods.
Remember, the tender green leaves of young plants cannot stand direct sunlight! So, move your plant away from an unshaded south window.
Insufficient air humidity causes the jagged edges of the leaves to dry. Still, you can simply cut off the dried parts to make the plant look better and try to increase the air humidity.
7. Calathea Roseopicta – Painted Calathea
The standard definition of a plant with large leaves is that the leaf size should be 8 inches to 3 feet long. In that case, Calathea Roseopicta is on the lower limit as its round leaves are generally 9 inches in diameter or slightly larger.
However, it is on this list because of the exceptional color it can bring to a space. There’re 9 of Calathea Roseopicta hybrids.
Depending on the varieties, the leaves of Calathea roseopicta are oval, striped with thick bands of dark green, light green, & other colors (purple, pink or silver). The underside of the leaf is a few shades lighter purple. This unique combination makes it one of the most desirable calathea species.
It is a fast-growing plant, and in conditions with sufficient moisture in the soil and environment, it can reach its maximum maturity of 30 inches in height and 20 inches in width in one or two seasons.
MORE LIKE THIS: 25 Fun Calathea Varieties To Grow (From Easy To Challenging)
Few plants can boast such incredibly richly colored leaves as the tropical caladium. These unique beauties resemble a work of art more than a living plant.
The rich, full bushy form, measuring up to 2.5 feet in height and width in some specie, additionally emphasizes its irresistible appearance!
But, this tuberous plant, in the house or the garden, enters a dormant phase in winter, regardless of the temperature you provide.
It means you can enjoy its performance from spring to late autumn since the leafy part disappears during the winter.
Yet, it is comforting that you can preserve the tubers over the winter in an unheated area. Plant them next spring and relish the explosion of colors again.
And another note: caladium is a hydrophobic plant, so spraying the leaves has no effect!
9. Dieffenbachia Seguine – Dumb Cane
Dieffenbachia Seguine is an attractive, lush tropical herbaceous perennial with 18 inches-long, oval, pointed green leaves speckled with stunning white or cream patterns.
Outdoors, this dieffenbachia giant can grow 6 to 10 feet tall, but indoor plants are a bit more modest and rarely grow more than 3 feet tall.
Yet, if you consider the vase-shaped leafy part with alternately arranged arching, smooth, shiny leaves, this fast-growing plant quickly fills the space.
Like other plants from the Araceae family, its leaves contain poisonous calcium oxalate, so it should be kept out of the reach of children or pets.
On the other hand, Dieffenbachia is an effective air purifier with another advantage: it is easy to grow and tolerates low light levels without significantly losing the color of its leaves.
10. Marble Queen Pothos – Epipermimum Marble Queen
Although most popular indoor pothos have leaves up to 5 inches long, the majestic Marble Queen Pothos, with proper care and plenty of light and nutrients, can grow huge 15-inch wide foilage!
This fast-growing, widely popular, adaptable, and durable climber can grow up to 18 inches a season. Rapid growth and easy cultivation make it an excellent choice for beginners and inexperienced growers.
The secret to big leaves in pothos is simple: provide it with climbing support, and never let the shoots hang or fall! And, over the years, you will have pothos with giant leaves!
11. Philodendron Mcdowell – Pillow Leaf Philodendron
Spectacular Philodendron McDowell is a rare hybrid created by crossing Philodendron pastazanum and Philodendron gloriosum from South America.
Its magnificent, dark green, heart-shaped leaves can grow up to 26 inches long. Also, prominent white veining cuts through the leaf plate, giving it a distinctive, wrinkled texture.
Unlike its climbing cousins, this creeping plant spreads horizontally and can occupy up to 6 feet of space.
The plant grows relatively quickly, so you can expect a new giant leaf to unfold every four to six weeks under favorable conditions.
12. Anthurium Crystallinum
Anthurium crystallinum is a sought-after flowering aroid native to the Central and South American rainforests.
Although it does not produce interesting flowers like Anthurium andraeanum, it will win you over with sophisticated, dark green leaves up to 16 inches long.
The upper surface of the leaf has a soft velvety texture. It is additionally decorated with a silvery vein network that follows the shape of the foliage.
Although it does not grow taller than 3 feet, this charming air-purifying epiphyte with aerial roots may need support to stay upright.
13. Dwarf Banana – Musa Acuminata
Recently, growing indoor dwarf bananas far from their homeland has been a rising trend.
The reasons are certainly not the fruits you will harvest at the end of the season! Its trump cards are palm-like large, up to 4 feet long cylindrical, smooth leaves, and the compact form of the crown.
Of course, indoors, you can only grow dwarf varieties like Dwarf Cavendish, Williams Hybrid, or Dwarf Lady Finger. But even those plants can grow 6 to 10 feet tall.
The increased interest in these tropical charmers has encouraged the creation of many new varieties. The novelties include some variegated foliage, such as alluring Albo Musa.
This fast-growing species can produce new leaves in a week or ten days, but don’t expect fruit! Indoor bananas are mainly an exotic decoration, and when you feel like eating their delicious fruits, go to the supermarket!
General Care for Houseplants With Large Leaves
Most indoor plants with large leaves come from tropical or subtropical regions. So they need suitable conditions to thrive outside their homeland.
Of course, this does not mean that you should replicate the tropics in your home, but still, here are some general notes to help keep your tropical beauty comfortable:
Higher Air Humidity
The standard humidity level in an average home is between 30 and 40%. Tropical plants usually need more than 40% humidity and even up to 90%.
To provide it, you can use pebble trays, regular leaf spraying, or humidifiers that will do the job for you!
The container for large-leaved plants must have drainage holes and be stable and spacious for root development.
The ideal container should have a diameter one inch larger than the diameter of the root mass.
A pot that is too small results in stunted growth. A too-large pot stimulates root growth instead of aboveground growth.
Moreover, the plant in an oversized container has a higher chance to root rot since the soil holds more moisture and takes longer to dry.
Although each plant has specific water requirements, a general rule of thumb is to water the plant when the top 2 inch of soil starts to dry.
It is usually once a week from spring to fall for plants in 10-inch-diameter pots of equal depth.
Of course, the rule does not apply to all species, but it is a good start! Remember that any house plant recovers more easily from a lack than excess water!
Appropriate Soil Composition
Tropical plants grow in loose, nutritious, and porous soils with a slightly acidic or neutral pH value (5,5 to 7,5).
You can get ready-made mixes designed for these plants or make your blend by combining three parts of organic potting soil and one part of vermiculite.
An even temperature throughout the year without large fluctuations will make your plant feel at home.
It means the winter minimum should never be below 50°F, but you should not keep them above 88°F in the summer. The ideal range is 65 to 80°F year-round.
Enough space is another essential factor in growing large-leaved plants because many can grow to an impressive size!
Thus, don’t grow them in a small room with a lot of furniture because they could become a nuisance instead of a decoration afterward! Before you host any big-leaf plant, check its maximum size at maturity so you know what to expect in time!
Most large leaf plants come from the shaded ground floors of tall tropical forests. It means their physiology is adapted to filtered light without long-term direct exposure to bright sunlight.
Therefore, they grow well next to north, east, and west windows or at least three feet from an unshaded south window.
ALSO TRY: 20 Best Plants for South-Facing Windows
Dust and environmental particles look ugly and make breathing difficult for the plant!
So, you should wipe the leaves regularly with a damp cloth. The procedure facilitates transpiration and gives the plant a neat and attractive appearance.