Cat-Friendly Houseplants

Cat playing with orchid petal on a table.

Walking into a garden center or home improvement store and seeing all of the many options for houseplants might be daunting. Some plants require more sunlight than others, flourish in humid situations, or are even harmful to cats. Knowing which plants are safe to have near your cat might help you avoid a lot of future problems. The plants listed below are wonderful choices for cat owners.

  • 01 of 09


    Purple orchids, Violet orchids. Orchid is queen of flowers

    Orchids are lovely houseplants that come in a wide range of colorful colors and kinds and are easy to find. These vibrant blooming plants are tall and delicate, yet they're also cat-safe. They don't need much water and shouldn't be maintained in direct sunlight, but they do appreciate a little humidity in a warm atmosphere. Orchids don't take up a lot of table or floor space, but they can grow to be fairly tall.

  • 02 of 09

    African Violets

    These plants with little blooms are commonly seen at garden stores in small pots and are a typical tabletop houseplant. They are most recognized for their little purple or pink blooms, although they may also be found in a range of hues. African violets come in a variety of leaf shapes and are occasionally mistaken with another plant called Gloxinia. African violets thrive in bright sunshine in a warm, humid environment. They take up little space and are often affordable.

  • 03 of 09

    Spider Plants

    Because of its colorful, dangling tendrils, spider plants have been popular houseplants for decades. These leafy plants may be hung from the ceiling or placed on a shelf and let to hang their plantlets. These plants are very simple to maintain because they do not require much sunshine or precise temperatures. Even though your cat is fascinated by the spider plant's hanging plantlets, it's nice to know that these plants are safe to keep around your feline companions.

  • 04 of 09

    Boston Ferns

    The Boston fern is a large, leafy plant that quickly covers an empty area in a windowsill and is readily available at garden shops and home improvement stores. Although cats may bat at the leaves, if they eat a falling leaf, they will not be poisoned. Boston ferns need humidity and strong but indirect light, but if your house becomes a little cooler in the winter, temperatures aren't an issue. Even if the plants haven't outgrown their present container, repotting in the spring is suggested to keep them happy, and you can divide the plant into numerous plants at this time to create a wider greenspace for you and your cat to enjoy.

    Continue to 5 of 9 below.
  • 05 of 09

    Polka Dot Plants

    The scientific name for this colorful houseplant, sometimes known as a polka dot plant, is Hypoestes phyllostachya. Its brightly colored leaves contain patterns that resemble freckles or dots, making it a one-of-a-kind way to give a splash of color to a lush green setting. If a cat chews on the leaves of a polka dot plant, it is okay, but if they consume a considerable portion of the plant, vomiting and/or diarrhea may occur. These plants prefer intense light, and if they don't get enough, they won't create the typical patterned leaves, so if your polka dot plant is just producing solid green leaves, it's time to give it more.

  • 06 of 09


    Bromeliads come in a wide range of colors and designs, and are becoming more common in homes. Bromeliads of this cultivar are the most regularly observed. Because these plants want comparable circumstances as orchids, many individuals collect both types of houseplants. Bromeliads require bright but indirect sunshine and fast-draining soil to grow, but they can tolerate a broader range of temperatures than you might assume because they are native to rainforests.

  • 07 of 09


    Succulents are popular houseplants due to their diverse forms, textures, and low-maintenance requirements. Haworthia is sometimes known as the zebra cactus, however it lacks the sharp spines that other cacti possess. This succulent is ideal for cat-friendly households, especially if space is limited. Haworthias occur in a variety of sizes, with some just needing a teacup to survive. They prefer bright, indirect light, although they don't require much water, especially during the winter months, like other cactus.

  • 08 of 09


    Gloxinia is a bright houseplant that is also suitable for cats. It is sometimes mistaken with African violets. Although the blooms are less bell-shaped than African violets, this houseplant has the same lamb's ear-like leaves. These plants like indirect yet strong light, as well as a continually wet soil and temperatures in the 70s.

    Continue to 9 of 9 below.
  • 09 of 09

    Areca Palms

    Areca palms are a good option if you want a bigger houseplant that is safe to keep around your cat. These trees require a lot of fertilizers, as well as strong yet indirect light. They may not be the simplest to maintain if you don't have a green thumb, but they're great for creating a vast indoor greenspace that's also cat-safe.

While there are many safe houseplants for cats, certain plants can be harmful. Before bringing a plant into your house, make sure you do your homework. Lilies, azaleas, crocuses, birds of paradise, carnations, chrysanthemums, daisies, daffodils, dalias, and many more houseplants are harmful to cats. If you're not sure if a plant your cat ate is hazardous, call your veterinarian or a pet poison hotline right away.

If you suspect your pet is sick, call your vet immediately. For health-related questions, always consult your veterinarian, as they have examined your pet, know the pet's health history, and can make the best recommendations for your pet.