Indoor plants growing outdoors in a front yard in hawaii.

“Indoor Plants” Growing Wild in Maui

by / 5 Comments / 583 View / August 4, 2008

On my recent trip to Maui, I had the opportunity to witness tropical plants such as bromeliads, heliconias, spathiphyllums, crotons, and cordylines in their natural or “naturalized” habitat.

To some of you, these plants are strictly seasonal container plants or houseplants.

Not in Maui!

Bird of paradise plant

The  Bird of paradise plant, (Strelitzia reginae) can be planted in the ground in humid, mild winter areas such as Florida and other parts of the country.

If you follow the Sunset Garden Climate Zone Guide, you should be able to grow  the Bird of paradise in zones 22-25, 27, and in Hawai in zones H1, H2; marginal in zones 9, 12-21.

Those outside these climate zones can enjoy the Bird of paradise as an indoor houseplant, just be aware that it is a poisonous plant if eaten.

Keep the kids and pets away from this one!

Bird of Paradise Care as an Indoor Plant


It is not surprising that the Bird of paradise  has some  specific climate requirements as an indoor plant.

Indoor temperatures between 65 and 75 degrees, are ideal for your “Bird.”

Place your plant in a bright light area, (it should receive at least 4 hours of direct sunlight everyday) and do not allow it to dry out!

The Bird of Paradise plant should be kept moist at all times, but not “soggy!’

Start by watering your plant once a week and monitor the soil moisture level.

You can adjust your watering schedule depending on how fast the soil dries.

More Resources

If you are extremely busy, you may want to consider planting your house plants in  a self watering container.

I love Lechuza planters.

Lechuza planters are stylish and can keep your plants watered for up to 12 weeks once established!

The message board over at GardenWeb has some interesting talk about Bird of paradise if you would like to explore some more.










In Maui,  the “no watering, no feeding and no leaf shining” regimen, did not stop these plants from thriving.

Wild and Beautiful Tropical Plants!

Do you recognize some of these understory plants growing in the tropical rainforest?



I see ferns and heliconias!


monstera plant tropical giant


Monstera plant, the “green Swiss cheese” of the gardening world!


cordyline plants used as hedge

There were cordylines of every hue and color..



… lining the road to Hana!


Do you carry a torch for exotic plants?

Which ones?

5 Comment

  1. You can grow in you house all year long with 1 product… guys are going to love this!!!

  2. Wow! This really makes our house plants look skinny! Great pictures. If my Monstera would be a fraction of this plant I would be quite happy!

  3. Great pictures. It’s always cool to see exotic plants in their natural habitat!

  4. Hi Anna,
    My tropicals do not get anywhere as big as the wild Maui plants. Mine are in containers and that certainly limits their growth. Outdoors is too hot and dry for them were I live.

    Fill your bromeliad’s little “floral cup” with water. It will give your plant time released doses of water.

  5. I just inherited a bromeliad and I have no clue what to do with it. It’s looking a bit sickly with greyish leaves. I need to take it to Maui and plant it along the roadside. This is a true paradise and amazing. Now you live in Calif–the shaking and baking state as Cindee @ Cindee’s Garden calls it. Do your tropicals get this big?

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