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Add Pizzazz to Coastal Décor with Stimulating Plant Life

Add Pizzazz to Coastal Décor with Stimulating Plant Life

Feb 1st 2021

Add Pizzazz to Coastal Décor with Stimulating Plant LifeThere's some debate regarding what constitutes coastal decor. Is it the laid-back, beachy vibe of the west coast or the more traditional, nautical appeal of the east coast? Are Mediterranean and tropical styles equally representative of coastal decor?

In truth, all of these styles, varied as they are, evoke the sun, sand, and surf that dominate coastal design, albeit in very different ways. Whether you like the clean lines and nautical themes of east coast decor, the organic, comfy feeling of west coast design, the wood and terra cotta of Mediterranean, or the colorful island style particular to tropical environs, you can spice up your design with the right plants. Here are a few tips to get started.

East Coast Design

Traditional patterns, clean lines, and nautical colors and elements typify the east coast when it comes to coastal design—think weekend escapes in the Hamptons. While you want your oars and fishing floats to take center stage when it comes to accessories, you can add some greenery with small, potted plants like a ficus or even the traditional east coast standby—ferns. For a classic flower that adds color to your home, try any variety of lilies, especially bright, yellow tiger lilies that will perfectly offset navy tones.

West Coast Design

Coastal design for the west coast has an altogether more organic aesthetic, with washed-out whites, natural elements (particularly driftwood), and unique patterns and one-of-a-kind accessories. How can you upgrade this casual style with plants?

Start with large, potted plants for the floor that feature broad leaves or expansive fronds, such as a fiddle leaf fig, a dragon tree, or a parlor palm. Add a statement flower with eye-catching structure, like a calla lily or any variety of orchid, to act as a focal point for your coffee table.

Mediterranean Coastal

When you think of coastal styling, you typically think light and airy, but the Mediterranean style is altogether heavier in terms of rich colors and materials. This means you'll need more stylized plant life to compete. For both greenery and structural appeal, consider adding snake plants with their stiff, commanding fronds, and instill a pop of color and shine with long-lasting anthurium.


Because of the bright colors common to tropical design, you'll want lush greenery to evoke the island feel. Orange or white birds of paradise are an ideal choice for indoors. Large leaves and exotic flowers are an excellent complement to tropical design, and if you don't want to compete with colorful decor, white birds of paradise provide a ton of drama.

In Conclusion

Regardless of the coastal style you prefer, there are plenty of plants that will help to add color and ambience to your space. As with any design style, it's best to choose plants ranging from small to large to add depth and variety to every room, and always consider native plants for eco-friendliness and ease of maintenance.