Let’s be honest: even if you don’t believe your sign dictates your disposition, we all have a tendency to turn to the monthly horoscopes in the backs of magazines at the nail salon.
We’re gluttons for wanting to know what our future holds, who our perfect partners might be (Pisces is too wishy washy for my disposition!), and quite frankly — to know a little more about “us”. Our household plants too, can act as a mirror, reflecting their qualities back on us — often revealing more than meets the eye. So match your zodiac to the most fitting houseplant, and see which one may be right for you!
Aquarius (January 20 – February 18)
Smart, stubborn, and fiercely independent, Aquarius like to dance to their own drummer. Because of this, they often stand out from the crowd with their bold, eccentric, and unique nature. Aquarius are often insistent on doing something their way — even if they are shown that it’s the wrong way. Regardless, their smart and stubborn nature make them persevere.
Perfect plant: Monstera deliciosa (Mexican breadfruit)
You can say that the Monstera deliciosa, otherwise known colloquially as the Mexican breadfruit, has become the “it” plant of the moment. They, like Aquarius, are standouts. Young leaves are heart-shaped and rarely have fenestrations, or holes, but as the plant matures, the leaves will not only increase in size, but will also develop striking “windows”. If left untrained, the Monstera will spread wildly, and often send out long, fleshy aerial roots, which can find their way into neighboring plant pots, behind dressers, or wherever else they can grow into.
Pisces (February 19 – March 20)
Pisces represent life’s extremes. They are deeply affected by the world, often feeling more empathy than any other sign. This means that when something is joyful, Pisces will be extremely happy — but if something is stressful or sad, then Pisces may begin to feel depressed. These lower notes can make the typical Pisces withdrawn. Because of this element, Pisces has an aura of mystery and elusiveness, though it’s really a sign of Pisces’ sensitive nature.
Perfect plant: Spathiphyllum (Peace lily)
The Spathiphyllum, otherwise known as the Peace Lily, is a common household plant with glossy dark green leaves and a whitish or greenish spathe, which is the “hooded” part of the plant that encompasses the yellow spiky inflorescence. Peace lilies are household “drama queens.” If they don’t receive water, they will let you know — often drooping their leaves over the planter. However, as soon as they are given a little H2O, they perk up in no time. Despite this characteristic, they are quite resilient plants and are suitable for a range of lighting conditions.
Aries (March 21 – April 19)
Aries are fiercely independent and highly energetic. They often represent self-starters, entrepreneurs and leaders, which means all attention is on them. This automatically makes them a bit more self-oriented, but that’s partially due to their confidence and energy.
Perfect plant: Paphiopedilum sp. (Lady Slipper Orchids)
Lady slipper orchids, or “Paps” are they are called in orchid circles, are exquisite specimens that are typically some of the easier orchids to grow indoors. That being said, they still require the utmost attention — as they should; their showy blooms are hard to beat, and they’ll often steal the show from other plants nearby.
Taurus (April 20 – May 20)
Taurus are strong people, often denoted by their perseverance and stubbornness. If they say they are going to get a job done, then they’ll do it because they are solid, reliable and persistent. However, they love routine — and if anything deviates outside of that routine, they become uncomfortable. Additionally, if you provoke a Taurus, then you don’t want to be on the other side of the argument! They are bullish and will most often win.
Perfect plant: Myrtillocactus sp. (Cacti)
If you have a sunny, southern or western-exposed windowsill, then cacti are the perfect companion plant for you. They are, like Taurus, solid, reliable and persistent. Every couple weeks in the growing season, they’ll appreciate a routine watering, but come winter, you can forgo giving them water completely. Just be cautious while watering, however. If you get too close, you may wind up with a surprise!
Gemini (May 21 – June 20)
Gemini are independent, positive-minded creatures who thrive on change. Because of this, they are quick-witted, adaptable, and react quickly and confidently in situations that would normally stress out others. However, if a situation is stagnant or boring, they will become anxious and often find a way to regain their freedom and excitement. They are multi-faceted, often switching from topics or groups with ease, which makes them fun to have in social circles.
Perfect plant: Philodendron sp. (Philodendron)
The Philodenron genus was made for Geminis. They are quite resilient plants and adapt to a range of lighting conditions, though most prefer bright, indirect light. For most Philodendrons, if you give them a place to clamber or climb, they will become the center-of-attention, as their leaves tend to become larger and change over time. Many Philodendrons have actually been misclassified for this reason; young leaves can look entirely different from larger leaves, making this group an interesting one to say the least!
Cancer (June 21 – July 22)
Cancer are generally complex people — often characterized by shyness, an unpredictable nature, and delicate demeanor. In many ways, they need emotional support from others, and so prefer to hang out with a tight knit group who understands them. If they don’t have that support, they often sulk and shy away. However, if given the support, they exhibit a love for others that gives back tenfold.
Perfect plant: Mimosa pudica (Sensitive plant)
Though an uncommon houseplant, Mimosa pudica, or “Sensitive plant”, is fun to have around because if touched, their leaves respond by folding up, as if they were shying away. Giving these plants good light and keeping them in a terrarium will ensure that they stay healthy, but if the conditions aren’t met, the plants will often sulk and die back. Be careful touching this plant too much, however — they will often respond by not closing or their thorny stems will give you a little prick!
Leo (July 23 – August 22)
Leo is an independent sign, but they are ironically dependent on others because they need people to appreciate them. This is also an added irony because they tend to like the extremes of having an audience and being left alone. They are sometimes temperamental, sometimes demanding, but it’s because they have big, magnetic personalities and can easily take up space — in both positive and negative ways. Leos, more than any other sign, appreciate a life of luxury, so if something is in their quarters, it has to be magnificent!
Perfect plant: Ficus lyrata (Fiddle leaf fig)
A Leo would love a Ficus lyrata, or fiddle leaf fig. They are large, beautiful, and magnificent trees that can stand out in any space. People will admire them, but if you dote on them too much — touching their leaves constantly — then they’ll eventually respond unfavorably. The key here is to admire them, water and fertilize and repot when needed, and clean the leaves now-and-again so they stay shiny and luxurious, but don’t love them too much. They are, like Leos, independent, and would rather be an audience pleaser, left on a stage, than part of a crowd.
Virgo (August 23- September 22)
Virgo is very much a sign that operates from a cerebral context. They are analytical, philosophical and methodical. This can make it hard for them to get out of their head since they are so comfortable in thinking mode. This quality can make Virgos feel a bit more aloof and strangely calm, but often they are contending with more nervous energy on the inside.
Perfect plant: Lithops sp. (Living stones)
Virgos would appreciate the Lithops, which are aptly named “Living stones” for the reason that they are stone mimics. The leaves above and below ground are fleshy, and strangely enough, the vast majority of the leaves are actually underground. It may not seem as if a lot is happening on the outside, but the transparent “windows” on the face of the Lithops actually direct sunlight into the underground portions of the living stones, which is where all the photosynthesis happens.
Libra (September 23 – October 22)
Libras are “people persons.” They prefer to work in partnership with others, as opposed to working alone. They are far more easy-going than many of the other signs, and can often be viewed as lazy, but many times they are observing and taking in their current situation. They thrive on consensus and are highly diplomatic; this quality allows them to see everyone’s side, which makes them a likeable person, as they can relate to everyone. Generally because of their easygoing nature, they stress very little and are fairly balanced.
Perfect plant: Tillandsia sp. (Air plant)
If any plant was made for a Libra, which is an air sign, it would be Tillandsia, which are known as “air plants.” Air plants may also seem “lazy”, growing on trees and soaking in nutrients and water from rainwater and fog, but they are actually important members of the ecosystem, often bringing much humidity into the tree canopy. As houseplants, they like a little attention on the regular, so a spritz here and there, a soaking once or twice a week, and some foliar feeding is a must, but otherwise, they are relaxed plants.
Scorpio (October 23 – November 21)
Scorpios are one of the more independent signs, often thriving on their own. This gives them more space to do the things that they have set out to do, as they are intensely driven and will go to any length to reach their goals. This means that they can operate in very stressful situations very cooly, and often reformulate a new way to approach a challenge if they can obtain it through their initial path. They are adaptable, versatile and resilient. Scorpios are generally unemotional people, but what’s underneath is a highly controlling, strong and persistent person.
Perfect plant: Sansevieria sp. (Snake plant)
The Sansevieria, also known as the snake plant, is the quintessential strong, resilient plant that can grow across a range of conditions. Water them too little: they adapt. Water them too much: they still adapt. Give them more light: they are fine. Give them a little less light: they don’t seem to mind. Most species grow straight up, which gives them a strong look for any home. Between their unique look and their persistence, they are a quite popular houseplant.
Sagittarius (November 22 – December 21)
Sagittarius are itinerant and independent by nature. Like Gemini, they can get bored very easily, but are generally positive and optimistic people. They have a very expansive worldview, and will often go to any length to find an answer to a question that they may have. They often don’t like to be held back, so they can be relatively unemotional, which can seem cold, but it’s because emotion can hold them back. They are people who like to move on and continue exploring.
Perfect Plant: Epipremnum sp. (Pothos)
The Pothos, also commonly called “Devil’s Ivy”, is a very popular houseplant known for its ability to climb to great heights or hang from a hanging basket. They grow quickly and persistently, often exploring the farthest reaches of the house. They can easily be cut behind a node, which is the bulbous component of a stem, and will grow and root easily in water. They are, like Sagittarius people, hard to hold back, and are quite happy to grow just about anywhere.
Capricorn (December 22 – January 19)
Capricorns are highly self-disciplined, and that often means they take on all the work by themselves, particularly if other people are not picking up the slack. Because of this, they are often looked at as serious people, but it’s this virtue that allows them to be highly effective at what they do. If something is not done to their quality, then they will not only get it done — but will excel at it, even if it wasn’t one of their core competencies. Because they are ambitious and highly organized, they can come off as pushy and intrusive to those that are less so, but they are also very patient, and will only operate when all the right pieces are in place.
Perfect plant: Bryophyllum sp. (Kalanchoe or Mother-of-thousands)
The Bryophyllum, also commonly known as Kalanchoe or Mother-of-thousands, is the plant that does it all. The common name “Mother-of-thousands” comes from the Bryophyllum’s ability to produce clonal plantlets along the leaf margins, which eventually drop into the soil and produce their own plants. The Bryophyllum, like the Capricorn, doesn’t wait for others to help it do what it wants to. And in many cases, will spread and spread and spread — often taking over other planters — because that’s what it does best.
Lead illustration by Jessie Kanelos Weiner. Photos by Homestead Brooklyn.
+ Have you ever grown any of the plants above? Share your stories here. And be sure to tune into more fun plant facts on Plant One On Me, my weekly Q&A on all things plant-related and more inspiration on HomesteadBrooklyn.com and @homesteadbrooklyn.