Pretty Houseplants for Your Sweetheart

Florist’s cyclamen have pretty heart-shaped leaves and can have flowers in many hues of pink and red. (Image by Jessie Keith)

Red or pink roses offer a beautiful but temporary anniversary, Valentine’s, or birthday sentiment. If your sweetheart enjoys plants, why not choose a botanical gift with more lasting enjoyment? Houseplants with heart-shaped leaves and brilliant pink and red foliage and/or flowers are offered by florists and will look lovely in a pretty pot throughout the year. (Look for online florist’s links at the end of each plant description.)

Houseplants for Your Sweetheart

In keeping with holidays for your loved one, pink and red plants are best. Those with heart-shaped leaves are a bonus. Here are some of the prettiest and easiest to grow.

Flamingo Flower

Anthurium flowers can be red, white, or pink. The Dutch variety ‘Livium’, shown here, is candy-striped with hints of green. (Image by Jessie Keith)

Heart-shaped flowers in Valentine’s colors make the South and Central American flamingo flower (Anthurium hybrids) a good houseplant for the season. Sizes vary based on the variety. ‘Queen of Hearts’ is a pretty one reaching up to 2-feet. The candy-striped ‘Livium‘ is shorter, reaching just 18″, and Anthurium ‘Million Flowers Red’ is a shorter red-flowered variety with many extra-small flowers of glossy red. The easy-to-grow houseplants grow beautifully on window-side tabletops with moderate sunlight. (Click here for a good potted florist’s option.)

Rosy Rose-Painted Calathea

Rosy calathea looks pretty all year round with its large, intense pink leaves edged in dark green.

The leaves are the star of the show with the truly pink-leaved rosy calathea (Calathea roseopicta ‘Rosy’). Each large, glossy leaf is truly rosy pink and haloed in dark green. The tropical plant reaches 2 feet and grows beautifully in bright indirect light. You know it’s got to be good because the Royal Horticultural Society gave the plant an Award of Garden Merit in 2020. (Click here for a good florist’s option.)

Florist’s Cyclamen

Cyclamen are spectacular when in full bloom, and will rebloom with good care.

The nodding, shooting star flowers of the florist’s cyclamen (Cyclamen persicum hybrids) rise from mounds of heart-shaped leaves with intricate silver markings. Flower colors are mostly in shades of red, white, and pink, but there are also some purplish variants. When in bloom, the plants reach 6-12″, depending on the variety. The foliage looks attractive alone when plants are not in bloom. Provide your cyclamen with indirect sunlight. (Click here for a good florist’s option.)

Rippled Peperomia (Peperomia caperata ‘Luna Red’)

Peperomia ‘Luna Red’ has silvery red leaves with distinct ripples. (Image by Jessie Keith)

Peperomia lack showy flowers, but they make up for the lack with attractive, rippled, heart-shaped leaves with red overtones. The compact variety ‘Luna Red’ reaches 6-8 inches and has pewter and red foliage with a deeply corrugated texture. The brighter red ‘Schumi Red‘ is another option. The houseplant is also easy to grow and thrives in medium sunlight. (Click here for a good florist’s option.)

Good Luck Plant (Cordyline fruticosa)

Few plants have truly magenta-pink leaves, but good luck plant is an exception. (Image by Jessie Keith)

Most varieties of good luck plant have streaks of brilliant pink or red. Two of the prettiest are ‘Maria‘, with lance-shaped green leaves edged in magenta, and ‘Harlequin‘, with leaves green leaves striped with paler green and pink. The plants look outstanding all year long. Be sure to provide bright indirect light and remove any leaves with browning edges. Provide ample humidity to keep the foliage healthy.

Houseplant Care

Most of the plants mentioned here are tropical, aside from the Mediterranian cyclamen, so their cultural needs are similar. Place them where they can get bright indirect light on all sides. If you can only provide good light on one side, turn the plant intermittently to ensure uniform growth. Warmth (60-75 degrees F), average to moderate humidity, and regular water will keep them looking good. Let the pots become mostly dry between watering.

If you find one of these plants at a local nursery, buy a beautiful pot to place it in and add rich, all-purpose potting soil, such as Black Gold All Purpose Potting Mix, to fill in any gaps around the edges after planting. Be sure to leave at least an inch or two at the top for watering. An application of all-purpose slow-release fertilizer after planting will ensure they will stay fed and happy for up to six months.



Plants are the lens Jessie views the world through because they’re all-sustaining. (“They feed, clothe, house and heal us. They produce the air we breathe and even make us smell pretty.”) She’s a garden writer and photographer with degrees in both horticulture and plant biology from Purdue and Michigan State Universities. Her degrees were bolstered by internships at Longwood Gardens and the American Horticultural Society. She has since worked for many horticultural institutions and companies and now manages communications for Sun Gro Horticulture, the parent company of Black Gold. Her joy is sharing all things green and lovely with her two daughters.

Leave a Reply

Content Disclaimer:

This site may contain content (including images and articles) as well as advice, opinions and statements presented by third parties. Sun Gro does not review these materials for accuracy or reliability and does not endorse the advice, opinions, or statements that may be contained in them. Sun Gro also does not review the materials to determine if they infringe the copyright or other rights of others. These materials are available only for informational purposes and are presented “as is” without warranty of any kind, express or implied, including without limitation warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, and non-infringement. Reliance upon any such opinion, advice, statement or other information is at your own risk. In no event shall Sun Gro Horticulture Distribution, Inc. or any of its affiliates be liable to you for any inaccuracy, error, omission, fact, infringement and the like, resulting from your use of these materials, regardless of cause, or for any damages resulting there from.