Green Plants with Red Flowers – Gorgeous Color Combos from Nature

This group of about 1,000 perennial plants comes from Central America, northern South America, and the Caribbean. The plants can be grown outside in warm climates, but most people keep them inside or in greenhouses because they need special care. Growth rate is slow or moderate and dependent on ample light but susceptible to sunburn.

They can bloom over and over for long periods of time and are sometimes called flamingo flowers because of their bright red, green, and white colors. Blooming varieties are distinctive with heart-shaped waxy spathes (i. e. , modified leaf around the flower) and red or yellow spikes. Many anthuriums are climbers, and all need high humidity and warmth to thrive. Anthurium is toxic to humans and pets.

Red flowers popping against deep green foliage – this dramatic color combination instantly livens up any garden. Though less common than other hue pairings, these vivid blooms create eye-catching contrast. From tropical varieties to hardy perennials, many green plants bear rich red blooms.

In this article, we’ll highlight some of the best green plants with red flowers to grow. Read on for an overview of these beauties and tips for using them in your garden.

Why Red Flowers on Green Foliage Pops

This vivid couple thrills the senses and captivates viewers But why does the pairing of green leaves and red blooms look so striking to our eyes?

A few key factors are at play

  • Complementary colors – Red and green are opposite each other on the color wheel, creating strong visual contrast.

  • Intensity – Both colors are rich and saturated, unlike soft pastel tones.

  • Rarity – Few flowers flaunt true red hues, making them stand out against ubiquitous green foliage.

  • Symbolism – Red connotes passion, vigor, and love while green signals life, renewal, and health.

When you put all this together, it’s clear why red pops against green in such an exciting way. Keep reading for some of the best plants that feature this head-turning combo.


Anthurium, also known as flamingo flower, is a tropical plant with glossy green leaves and bright red blooms. The flowers are actually modified leaves called spathes that last for months. There are more than 1,000 species, but the most common houseplant is Anthurium andraeanum.

Though native to Central and South America, anthurium thrives as a container plant indoors. Provide bright, indirect light away from direct sun which can scorch the leaves. Keep the soil consistently moist but not sopping wet. Ideal temperatures are between 60-85°F. The blooms add exotic flair in any indoor space.

Outdoors, anthurium can grow in zones 11-12. Plant in well-draining soil rich in organic matter. Similar light and watering needs apply. Pinch off faded flowers to encourage new blooms all season long.


Begonias offer abundant flowers in radiant red atop full green foliage. Wax begonia (Begonia Semperflorens) is a popular bedding variety grown as an annual in most climates. It bears red, pink, or white clusters of blooms nonstop from spring to frost.

For a perennial option, try tuberous begonia (Begonia Tuberhybrida). Grown from tubers, its large rose-like red blooms and bushy growth light up partially shaded beds and borders. Provide rich, moist soil and avoid afternoon sun in hot climates.

Begonias grow beautifully in containers too. Let them spill over the edges of hanging baskets and window boxes. Pinch back leggy stems to encourage full, rounded shapes.


Few annuals give a bigger bang for your buck than geraniums. These stalwart bedding plants reliably pump out mounds of flowers in shades from red and pink to white and purple. The red varieties add welcomed color from spring until frost.

Geraniums like full sun and bloom best with average watering and feeding. Plant them en masse for bold splashes of color or use red varieties to complement other pastel hues. Try combining them with white petunias or pink begonias.

To overwinter geraniums, take cuttings in late summer. Root them indoors and grow on as houseplants over winter. The following spring you’ll have fresh plants ready for the garden.


Lantana is a heat-loving perennial that flowers prolifically in intensely hot climates. Though species come in many colors, the red varieties add stunning contrast against the plant’s coarse green leaves.

Most varieties of this sun worshipper grow 1-3 feet tall and wide. Space plants 12-24 inches apart in beds and borders. They require fast-draining soil and very little water once established. Use caution when handling lantanas, as the leaves and stems can irritate skin.

Give plants a hard pruning in late winter to shape them and get rid of any dead wood. Lantanas will bloom from spring until frost with this care. Attractive to butterflies, they work beautifully in wildflower gardens and meadows.


The exotic blooms of orchids lend elegance to outdoor landscapes and indoor displays. Many orchid varieties produce eye-catching spikes of red blooms on top of deep green foliage.

Outdoors, grow orchids suited to your climate in trees or mounted on hardscape. Provide dappled sunlight and consistent moisture with excellent drainage. Protect from hard freezes.

Indoors, moth orchids (Phalaenopsis) are the most common. Set in an east or west window out of direct sun. Water when the top few inches of the potting mix dries out. Feed monthly. Getting orchids to rebloom takes patience, but the reward is well worth it.


Few flowers tolerate heat and drought like vinca. Also known as periwinkle, this low, trailing groundcover thrives in full sun and poor soil. The glossy green leaves persist through intense heat and light that wilts other plants.

Vinca produces flowers in a range of hues, including bright red. Use the red varieties to carpet hot, dry sections of your landscape. Space plants 12 inches apart and water occasionally until established. Vinca spreads readily, making it useful for suppressing weeds and preventing erosion on banks and slopes.

Take care when planting vinca, as it can be invasive in some regions. But in the right spot, its ability to thrive under adverse conditions is unmatched. The striking flowers are a bonus.


Grown for its vividly colored and patterned foliage, coleus comes in almost endless variety. The colors span the rainbow, often mingled together on a single plant. Deep red varieties accompanied by green or burgundy foliage make a big impact in gardens and containers.

Coleus thrives in part sun to full shade with average watering and fertilizing. Pinch off flower spikes to prolong the incredible foliage show. Use it en masse or combine it with greens, purples and chartreuses for stunning combos. Coleus also pairs beautifully with begonias, impatiens and caladiums.

Most coleus are grown as annuals in zones 10 and below. Take cuttings in late summer to overwinter plants indoors. Protect from frost when growing outdoors.

Other Green Plants with Red Flowers

Many additional green plants bear red blooms. Here are a few more top options:

  • Canna lily – Exotic looking tropical plants with large green leaves. Grow from rhizomes.

  • Chrysanthemums – Florist’s “mums” come in a rainbow of colors including rich reds.

  • Coral bells (Heuchera) – Evergreen perennial with tall flower spikes atop mound of foliage.

  • Crocosmia – Clump-forming corms produce spikes of small red flowers.

  • Zinnia – Prolific annuals ideal for cut flowers. Grow from seed.

With so many choices, it’s easy to incorporate red flowers against green backdrops in your garden. This classic color combo never fails to delight the senses!


Anthuriums prefer sun over shade but too much direct light can scorch the leaves. Inadequate light causes poor growth and few flowers. The ideal location for your plant provides six hours of bright, indirect sunlight daily.

What Do Anthurium Flowers Look and Smell Like?

Anthurium flowers are actually modified leaves called spathes. They grow on single spikes that come out of a central stem. Each spathe has a pencil-shaped structure in the middle where tiny white, red, or yellow flowers show up.

Spathes on most anthuriums grown as houseplants are red but varieties include white, pink, purple, and bicolors. The spathes are heart shaped and waxy with some types featuring a slightly crinkled appearance.

Anthuriums don’t all smell good. The smell of some can range from sweet and fruity to downright gross.

40+Pretty Houseplants with Red and Green Leaves


How do you keep an anthurium blooming?

Ideally, you want your anthurium to be in a brightly lit, warm room that receives enough air circulation but no major drafts. You don’t want your anthurium plant in direct sunlight, keep it near a window so it can receive plenty of bright, indirect light.

How long do anthurium plants live?

Anthuriums generally live 3-5 years, but can last longer with ideal care. Proper lighting, watering, and humidity are crucial for their health. Temperature and soil quality significantly impact their lifespan.

How often do anthurium plants bloom?

Anthurium is loved for its long blooms, lasting anywhere from eight to twelve weeks, with a few months without a bloom in between. As a bloom comes to its end, former leaves and flowers will dry up to make room for new growth.

What plants have red flowers?

Cyclamen prefer temps in the low 60s and bright, indirect light. The Flaming Katy plants are the most popular succulents grown in the Kalanchoe family, and probably the most common houseplants with red flowers. Popular not only for the large, dark-green fleshy leaves but its diminutive flowers that blossom in masses.

What indoor plants have red flowers?

There are a plethora of indoor plants with red flowers, with some of the most popular being Poinsettias, Hibiscus, Wax Begonia, and the Thanksgiving Cactus. In this article, we will list 20 of the most popular, red-flowered plants, along with information regarding each one and a little fun fact that you probably never knew.

What is a red houseplant called?

Thanks to the appearance of its leaves, these beautiful types of red houseplants are also commonly called nerve plants or mosaic plants. Fittonia is native to the rainforests of South America, where it has been traditionally used as a pain reliever and psychedelic.

What color flowers make a good flower garden?

Being one of the beautiful colors, red is sure to command attention. Red flowers will stand out among other plants and can brighten any display in your flower garden with their vibrant blooms. Adding them to your garden can lend it a romantic atmosphere, give it a tropical feel, or introduce a sense of energy and excitement.

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