25 Cat Friendly Plants That Are Safe For Your Furry Friend

editor@purewow.com (PureWow)

Do not scrap an indoor nature collection for the sake of Whiskers. Hear us out: You can have both—healthy felines and green decor—as long as you make sure your plant babies won’t poison your cat babies. Here, 25 cat-friendly plants - safe for your furry friend, and excellent additions to your home decor.

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1. Blue Globe Thistle

(Echinops bannaticus)

These quirky, prickly flowers might look dangerous but are totally safe. Like something out of a romantic Dr. Seuss book, they’re playful additions to bouquets and cute all on their own. Fun fact: They’re part of the sunflower family, a group typically safe for kitties.

2. Air Plants

(Tillandsia varieties)

If you don’t have air plants yet, you’re missing out. They look delicate but are easy to take care of—just soak them in water every week or two. Since they aren’t rooted in soil, kittens might think they’re toys, so keep an eye out for any wanderers.

3. Christmas Cactus

(Schlumbergera varieties)

Not all cacti are chill for cats, but the Christmas cactus is. Its gorgeous red flowers make it a great alternative to poinsettias during the holidays, which are not chill for cats.

4. Hibiscus

(Hibiscus rosa-sinensis, Hibiscus syriacus)

These beauties have big personalities and about 1,000 colorful options (yep). For a taste of the tropics, go for hibiscus instead of amaryllis, which is poisonous to cats. If you’re feeling really brave, go for a hibiscus tree!

5. Impatiens

(Impatiens varieties)

Impatiens are some of the most popular garden stars come spring. Potted versions—in orangey-red or deep purple—can brighten up your place without destroying your cat. Also, they like shade, which works well for spaces with limited light.

6. Ferns

(Pteridophyta varieties)

OK, ferns are perfect indoor plants, but one of the trickier varieties to tackle for pet owners. Some ferns are safe while others are not, which makes attentive selection important. Stick to Pteridophyta varieties, and you should be good. For the record, the following are safe for felines: Boston, Maindenhair, Bird’s Nest, Staghorn, Asparagus, Ball, Blood Sword, Rabbit’s Foot, Duffii, Dwarf Feather, Verona and Christmas.

7. Bloodleaf

(Iresine varieties)

If you have to ask how bloodleaf got its name, you haven’t seen one. The deep red and purple leaves on this plant make it a luscious choice during the fall and winter months, as long as it gets plenty of sunshine.

8. Sunflowers

(Helianthus annuus)

Nothing says “happiness” like a bouquet of sunflowers on the dining room table. Even a single yellow blossom can improve a space! (Just be sure you’re buying the real deal and not a daisy in sheep’s clothing. Daisies are toxic to kitties.)

9. Vines

Sweet Potato Vine (Ipomoea batatas) and Swedish Ivy (Plectranthus verticillatus)

Vines add so much “oomph” to an indoor garden. Hanging planters are pretty much made for overflowing bright green tendrils like the sweet potato vine or long, dangling glossy green leaves like Swedish Ivy. Be sure to keep the soil moist (and steer clear of toxic ivies like branching, California, English, needlepoint and sweetheart).

10. Baby’s Breath

(Gypsophila paniculata)

Chances are if you get flowers in the mail (awwwwww!) or ask a florist for something dainty, you’ll end up with baby’s breath. It’s simple, elegant and kinda reminds us of snow. (Make sure it’s not maiden’s breath you’re displaying! Looks similar, but the flowers are larger and dangerous for cats.)

11. Baby’s Tears

(Soleirolia soleirolii)

Yes, the name implies sadness, but these teeny tiny green leaves are perfect for hanging planters and window sills.

12. (Some) Palms

Parlor Palm (Chamaedorea elegans) and Bamboo Palm (Chamaedorea seifrizii)

Palms are terrific house plants because they make a statement without requiring too much maintenance. We recommend the parlor palm with its chic, sleek lines and the tall, slender bamboo palm. Avoid fern and sago palms, which could harm cats if ingested.

13. Orchids

(Phalaenopsis varieties)

Nothing says elegance like a tall, regal orchid. It demands respect, just like a proud feline. Keep the soil moist but not soggy, the sunlight ample but not scalding and your orchid will thrive. Maybe.

14. Prayer Plant

(Maranta leuconeura)

These plants are lush additions to decor as their big leaves offer tons of texture. They also love humidity, so like, get that humidifier you’ve been eyeing.

15. Spider Plant

(Chlorophytum comosum)

Spider plants are like mini green explosions! Dangle them from the ceiling or let them overflow as a centerpiece. They like it cool but can thrive pretty much anywhere. Kinda like your cat.

16. (Most) Succulents

Not on the succulent train? Get. On. Board. Succulents are trendy, easy to care for and the perfect addition to everything from a bookshelf to a bathroom. Just take note and avoid the few that are unsafe for cats: aloe, jade, pencil cactus.

17. Purple Velvet Plant

(Gynura aurantiaca)

The leaves of the purple velvet plant are, you guessed it, a bright plum purple, making it the perfect accessory to your many green house plants. Sometimes, it produces tiny orange flowers, too. Spooky!

18. Money Tree

(Pachira aquatica)

Take note: The money tree and the jade money tree are different. The non-toxic version has a twisted trunk and can grow anywhere from four inches to three feet tall. The Jade version has succulent-style leaves and is poisonous to cats.

19. Cast Iron Plant

(Aspidistra elatior)

This is perhaps the perfect house plant for a cat owner. It requires very little attention (in fact, its name alludes to how much neglect it can handle), adds subtle personality to a room and requires an occasional grooming sesh (wiping down the large green leaves). Remind you of anyone you know?

20. American Rubber Plant

(Peperomia obtusifolia)

Not only is the American rubber plant non-toxic to felines, but it literally removes toxins from the air. A little bright sunlight, regular watering and a pot large enough for a four-foot-tall tree (they can grow up to 10 feet!) is all you need. (Be sure to go with the American version, rather than the Indian Rubber Plant, which is actually part of the fig family.)

21. Club Moss

(Cassiope lycopodioides)

If you’re a terrarium person, you’ve probably used club moss or seen it before. Its bright green leaves grow quickly, and it doesn’t need direct sunlight.

22. Snapdragon

(Antirrhinum varieties)

While you’ll probably only see snapdragons in an outdoor garden, they can make gorgeous centerpieces for special occasions.

23. Creeping Zinnia

(Sanvitalia varieties)

This is another contender from the sunflower family, which makes sense because it looks like tons of tiny sunflowers clumped together. A cheerful choice for window boxes or desk accoutrements.

24. Rose

(Rosa varieties)

Hello! Roses?! Thank goodness these are safe around cats. Just make sure kitty doesn’t swallow a thorn or prick a paw by accident.

25. Cornflower

(Centaurea cyanus)

These periwinkle-hued beauties are the perfect detail to a farmhouse- or rustic-chic decor. They add color without being too presumptuous (also a good substitute for carnations, which are bad for cats).

A word of warning: Be sure to quadruple check the scientific name of any plant before buying, as some varieties within the same family aren’t as safe as others. If your sweet kitty does ingest a plant you believe is harmful, contact the Animal Poison Control Center immediately.

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