Four times in a row, I’ve tried to buy a faux plant from Target—and failed. I’ve signed up for in-stock alerts for Hearth & Hand with Magnolia’s 9-inch hanging Hoya plant four times, and the second I’ve gotten the alert, I’ve dashed to the checkout…only to have it sell out before I can complete my order. It seemed like a glitch in the (big box store) matrix, until I dug deeper: Interest in gardening has been on the rise since the pandemic, but for many of us Plant Killers out there, so has the desire for quality dupes, be they dried, crochet or plastic, like my just-out-of-reach Hoya.
And when it comes to artificial greenery, Target seems to be people’s secret source. Searches for “cute fake plants” are up 40 percent this month, according to Google Trends—suggesting growing appeal overall—but the bullseye-branded store is seeing even stronger demand (and not just from me). Queries for plants are up 300 percent year over year on Target.com, says executive vice president and chief merchandising officer Jill Sando. It was that surging interest that inspired the brand’s latest collaboration with Wild Creations author and stylist Hilton Carter, which includes 20 different faux plants, ranging from 10-inch desktop plants to showstopping 7-foot-tall fake trees. And they all look so surprisingly realistic that, if you buy one, you may accidentally water it.
The collection, which includes modern takes on planters, terrariums and propagation vessels, is available in stores and online now. And if it’s half as popular as that Hoya, it’s probably going to disappear quickly. With that in mind, here are the top finds from the new line. But, before you add them all to cart in the adrenaline rush to get it before it’s gone, consider this tip Carter gave us: “Choose faux plants that you believe you'll want to look at in your space for years to come, not just for the moment.” After all, they’ll be around for the long haul, even (especially?) if you completely neglect them.
1. 10-inch Artificial Peperomia Obtusifolia Plant
The beauty of a fake plant is that you don’t have to consider how much light the greenery needs, making them perfect for dark corners. This pretend baby rubber plant is just the right size for an open shelf, desktop or bathroom counter. And c’mon, how chic is that matte black ribbed planter?
2. 23-by-24-Inch Faux Monstera Adansonii Plant
Ah, the ultimate millennial plant, now as low maintenance as it gets. Often, faux plants’ leaves are so sparse that you’re left staring at the plastic stems (making them look cheesy), but that’s not the case here. The foliage is so robust that you can plop it on a console table by itself and boom! Instant lushness.
3. 39-Inch Artificial Rojo Congo Plant
Pet parents, you can finally own a Rojo Congo without panicking about Dogquin Phoenix getting too close to it. The real plant is toxic to animals, and while you definitely don’t want your pup turning this fake into his own personal chew toy, the dupe provides some peace of mind (no scrambling to pick up dropped leaves, at the very least!).
4. 24-Inch Faux String of Hearts Plant
If you want to draw people’s eyes up without investing in a gigantic plant, this is your best bet. The cascading tendrils of leaves are a nice way to break up the harsh lines that tend to be in a room (like bookshelves, picture frames and, well, just about any piece of mid-century modern furniture).
5. 22.5-Inch Artificial Umbrella Plant
Clocking in at just under two feet tall, this plant is great to mix in with shorter plants, creating a layered, boho vibe.
6. 68.5-Inch Faux Rubber Tree
If you were into that baby rubber plant but wanted something that’d make more of a statement in your room, look no further than this nearly 6-foot-tall wonder. The leaves have all the sheen of a real rubber tree’s, and the only upkeep you’ll need is the occasional dusting.
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