humidifiers

The 7 Best Humidifiers for Plants, and How to Pick the Right One

These top-rated humidifiers will help your plants reach their full potential.
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Incorporating greenery into your space is an excellent way to bring life into your home. But unbeknownst to some plant parents, most houseplants benefit from increased humidity. This is especially the case if you live in a cold, dry climate or have a tropical plant. Sure, you can place your moisture-craving plant in your bathroom so they soak up the steam from your shower, but experts recommend investing in a humidifier to regulate the moisture in your home.

"Humidifiers are an excellent option for plant parents who want to help mimic the natural environment of most plants," Alessia Resta, plant blogger and founder of Apartment Botanist, explains. "They add moisture into the air, allowing for plants to absorb that moisture through their pores. I love using my humidifier daily, as it keeps the plants looking lush; the additional moisture helps when new leaves are unfurling, so they don't get stuck or snap."

Below, explore the best humidifiers for plants and follow along with our expert-led guide to help your indoor plants thrive

The Best Humidifiers for Plants 

How to Tell if Your Plants Need More Humidity

"Many common houseplants are native to tropical rainforest areas, which means they've evolved to thrive in warm, humid air with 80%-plus humidity," says Bloomscape gardening expert Lindsay Pangborn. "In our climate-controlled homes, humidity tends to range between 30% to 60%. Winter is a particularly tough time for plants when indoor humidity averages only 35%, which is less than ideal for some plants."

According to Pangborn, your houseplants have ways of letting you know when they aren't getting enough humidity. "Keep an eye out for the most common signs of low humidity: dry, browning leaf tips, curling or yellowing leaf edges, deformed new leaves, flowers or flower buds falling off prematurely, or leaf drop," she says. "A good rule of thumb: The thinner the plant's leaves, the more humidity it likes. For example, calatheas and money trees love extra humidity, while [snake plants] and cacti can suffer in too humid conditions."

Common Plant Humidifier Questions Answered

Can a plant have too much humidity?

"There is such a thing as too much humidity, especially inside our homes," according to Pangborn. "They've evolved outdoors, where wind keeps fungal issues at bay. In our homes, the combination of too much humidity and not enough airflow can result in a fine, fuzzy mold on the surface of leaves and flowers or black rot developing on leaves or stems." She also notes that too much humidity can result in furniture and floor damage, as well as health-hindering bacteria and mold growth. 

Resta adds, "Make sure if you are increasing the humidity that you also balance with airflow. You don't want pooled water on your leaves or plants to be sitting in water. If you are limited with light or affected by the lack of light during the winter, I suggest investing in grow lights."

How long should the humidifier run for? Does this vary by plant?

Determining an optimal runtime depends on several factors, including the type of plants you have, the size of the room, the temperature of the room, and certain airflow characteristics like drafts, fan usage, and the circulation from your radiator or air conditioner. "Aim for an average humidity between 50% to 60% for your humidity-sensitive plants," Pangborn recommends. "The best thing you can do is to get a humidity meter and experiment with how often and how long you need to run your humidifier."

When's the best time to run a humidifier?

"Stick to running your humidifier during the morning and early afternoon only," Pangborn suggests. "It's important to allow any moisture on the leaves to evaporate before night falls." That's because wet leaves can lead to fungal issues that cooler night temperatures encourage.

If you have a humidifier already that you turn on during the cold winter months, you can keep that one going, and opt for one of these if you're trying to keep your tropical plants even happier.

Keep scrolling to explore the best plant humidifiers, and read testimonials from real plant owners. 

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Best Overall: Elechomes 6.5-Liter Top-Fill Humidifier

$115 (WAS $160), AMAZON

This pick comes recommended by Resta for its large 6.5-liter tank capacity and versatile warm and cool mist options. "​​If you can, I would invest in a humidifier that provides both warm and cool mist," she explains. "My plants respond well with warm mist in the winter and cool mist in the hot summer months." 

The Elechomes Humidifier is equipped with the brand's humidistat system, which self-regulates the humidity to match your customizable range. Its extra-large tank covers 861 square feet and offers 72 hours of run time, so you don't have to worry about constantly refilling it. The model also has a 360-degree swiveling nozzle, which allows it to evenly distribute moisture throughout your indoor garden and adjust it away from your furniture and valuables. Choose between six mist levels, each of which is ultra-fine and won't soak your plants, according to reviewers. 

What Plant Parents Are Saying: "I have about 50 tropical plants, mostly calatheas," one Amazon shopper explained. "I actually feel the humidity in my entire room and tested it with a hydrometer. So when my plants grow, I know I won't need to buy three to four cheap humidifiers to spread humidity throughout the room; I just need this one." 

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Best Budget: Levoit 2.4-Liter Cool Mist Humidifier

$40, AMAZON

Priced at $40, this 2.4-liter model from Levoit has a 24-hour runtime that spans 290 square feet. It emits an ultra-fine micro-mist that won't saturate your furniture and floors. Instead, it restores the necessary moisture to the air and can aim directly at your tropical plants with its 360-degree adjustable nozzle. Customize your mist levels with various settings you can control on the humidifier's turn dial. Reviewers enjoy the budget-friendly humidifier's quiet motor and automatic shut-off feature, which stops the machine once low water levels are detected. 

What Plant Parents Are Saying: "I purchased this to add humidity to my indoor garden," shared one reviewer. "It works like a charm and is easy to operate and easy to clean. It is also whisper-quiet." 

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Best Runtime: Levoit 6-Liter Warm and Cool Mist Humidifier

$90, AMAZON

Another pick from Resta, the Levoit Cool Mist Humidifier covers 753 square feet with its 6-liter water tank. It's ideal for large rooms and has a run time of 60 hours, which is more than enough time to reach your ferns, fiddle-leaf figs, and other big plants.

"My collection is filled with tropical plants that thrive with humidity," says Resta. "When I can, I try running my four humidifiers during the day at least once a week, if not more. I don't want my plants too spoiled by humidity because the reality is, I can't always provide that type of high humidity situation." 

Users have their choice of warm or cool mists. In fact, the model's warm mist humidifies rooms up to four times faster than its cool mist does, according to the brand. Turn on auto mode so the humidifier can self-regulate with its smart humidity sensor. Or, customize the humidity level based on the percentage required for your favorite houseplants. 

What Plant Parents Are Saying: "The mist output of this machine is also very impressive," a customer wrote in their five-star review. "I love the multidirectional mist nozzle option; I can aim one near my bed and another at my indoor palm. My plant loves the humidity and always becomes greener."

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Best for Small Rooms: Pure Enrichment MistAire Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier

$35 WITH COUPON (WAS $50), AMAZON

This humidifier restores moisture with its 1.5-liter tank, which can run on a continuous loop for 25 hours. Its thoughtful design allows for easy refilling, and it has an automatic shut-off feature that kicks in when water levels are low. The affordable model has a 360-degree mist nozzle to ensure that small plants like tillandsias and bromeliads receive adequate moisture. And if your tropical plants are located in your bedroom, you can rest easy thanks to the humidifier's night light and whisper-quiet motor. 

What Plant Parents Are Saying: "It adds a significant amount of moisture to the air and has been running flawlessly," an Amazon shopper said. "When I fill it before bed, on the highest setting, it's still going by morning eight to nine hours later… Overall, we have been getting less colds and my houseplants are thriving."

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Best Compact: Geniani Portable Cool Mist Humidifier

$58 WITH COUPON (WAS $68), AMAZON

Whether you're in need of a tabletop humidifier or a portable model, consider the Geniani Cool Mist humidifier. The space-saving humidifier uses ultrasonic technology to generate an ultra-fine mist so your plants can thrive. It has multiple mist levels that you can easily customize, and it runs on a quiet motor, which makes it ideal for bedrooms, nurseries, and other rooms that wouldn't welcome noisy interruptions. 

What Plant Parents Are Saying: "I keep it right next to my newly purchased fiddle leaf fig and bird of paradise plants for that extra humidity," explained a reviewer. "It is super quiet, has a nice steady mist, and stays on for a long time." 

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Best Warm Mist: Honeywell Filter-Free Warm Moisture Humidifier

$35, AMAZON

Plants that require higher humidity at warmer temperatures pair well with this filterless model from Honeywell. Its 3.8-liter tank delivers up to 24 hours of continuous mist, which can raise your home's humidity levels between 40% and 60%, according to the brand. Adjust the mist levels using the control dial and rest easy knowing that you won't have to constantly change the water tank or filter. 

What Plant Parents Are Saying: "This humidifier works very well to bring the humidity up in an open area. It doesn't get the carpet or the stand it sits on wet," a customer said in their review. "And [in] an open living-dining area, it brings the humidity up to 60% or 70% for my orchids and houseplants and for me and my nasal passages." They also said the machine is so quiet that they "don't even realize it's working." 

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Best Evaporative: Vornado Evaporative Humidifier

$110 (WAS $150), AMAZON

Evaporative humidifiers are excellent picks for plant parents looking to regulate the temperature of their homes while reducing their energy costs. These energy-saving models emit cool mist using a fan, which blows over the wick and removes heat. With the Vornado Evaporative Humidifier, users have a large 15-liter water tank that can cover up to 1,000 square feet for an uninterrupted 24 hours. You can customize the fan speed, as well as the humidity levels to best suit your indoor garden's needs. For low-maintenance moisture-thirsty plants, you can rely on the humidifier's Evap40 sensor to adjust to your ideal environment automatically. 

What Plant Parents Are Saying: "I ordered it and it was there in a couple of days, but our tree fern was down to one branch and not looking too good," recalled a reviewer. "The next morning the room was fresher and better smelling and all the plants in there were in better shape… We have been using this now for several weeks and the difference in the plants and overall feeling of the room is amazing. This unit really works well. It is very easy to fill and clean."

Other Ways to Increase Humidity for Plants

A humidifier isn't the only way to boost the moisture levels in your home. Here are some other ways to create a humid environment for your plants, according to Pangborn and Resta. 

Group your plants: As plants transpire, or release water vapor from their leaves, the air around them becomes more humid. When plants are grouped, they create a "microclimate by trapping and holding more humid air between them," says Pangborn.

Add a pebble tray: Placing your plant on a tray filled with pebbles and then topped off with water is another way to create a humid microclimate around your plant, according to Pangborn. The pebbles ensure your plant isn't sitting in water, and as the water evaporates, it raises the humidity. Be sure to top off the water in the pebble tray as it evaporates.

Misting: "Misting works in the same way that a humidifier does," Pangborn explains. "To be effective, it must be done very often since the water can evaporate into surrounding dry air quickly." 

Make a terrarium: "If a humidifier isn't a possibility, I suggest using cloches and domes to help plants benefit from a more humid environment," Resta says. Keeping them enclosed allows you to create a tailored climate for them to thrive; just remember to water them and alternate their lighting as needed.