34 Best Plants For Crested Geckos (Safe & Beautiful)

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Picking safe live plants for crested geckos can be an intimidating process. After all, there are so many choices out there!

This list will help you find the perfect plant species for your enclosure setup.

Tabla de Contenido
  1. The Benefits Of Having Plants With Crested Geckos
  2. The Best Plants For Crested Geckos
    1. 1. Pillow Moss (Leucobryum glaucum)
    2. 2. Snake Plant (Sansevieria laurentii)
    3. 3. Polka Dot Plant (Hypoestes phyllostachya)
    4. 4. Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema)
    5. 5. Creeping Wire Vine (Muehlenbeckia complexa)
    6. 6. Bird’s Nest Fern (Asplenium nidus)
    7. 7. Petra (Codiaeum variegatum)
    8. 8. Elephant Ear (Alocasia polly)
    9. 9. Musa Little Prince Banana Tree
    10. 10. Rabbit’s Foot Fern (Davallia/Humana tyermanii)
    11. 11. Weeping Fig (Ficus benjamina)
    12. 12. Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)
    13. 13. Bromeliads (Bromeliaceae)
    14. 14. Radiator Plants (Peperomia)
    15. 15. Shingle Plant (Rhaphidophora hayi)
    16. 16. Concinna Prayer Plant (Calathea concinna)
    17. 17. Zebra Plant (Calathea zebrina)
    18. 18. Pink Quill (Tillandsia cyanea)
    19. 19. Rubber Fig (Ficus Elastica)
    20. 20. Ponytail Palm (Beaucarnea recurvata)
    21. 21. Lucky Bamboo (Dracaena sanderiana)
    22. 22. Lemon Butter Fern (Nephrolepis cordifolia)
    23. 23. Jade Jewel (Dracaena fragrans)
    24. 24. Maidenhair Fern (Adiantum raddianum)
    25. 25. Jade Plant (Crassula ovata)
    26. 26. Creeping Fig (Ficus pumila)
    27. 27. Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
    28. 28. Arrowhead Plant (Syngonium podophyllum)
    29. 29. Seemannia Sylvatica
    30. 30. Earth Star Plant (Cryptanthus)
    31. 31. Philodendron
    32. 32. Nerve Plant (Fittonia)
    33. 33. Pothos, AKA Devil’s Ivy (Epipremnum aureum)
    34. 34. Dwarf Umbrella Tree (Schefflera arboricola)
  3. Plants That Are Not Safe For Crested Geckos
  4. Conclusion

The Benefits Of Having Plants With Crested Geckos

Live plants are an excellent addition to your crested gecko habitat for many reasons. First, plants create a more dynamic and lush environment. These lizards are endemic to New Caledonia, spending their days living among trees and brush.

They’re used to living around dense vegetation, so having plants in a captive environment improves the reptile’s quality of life. Your crested gecko will use them to play, exercise, and find safety.

Plants can also improve environmental conditions. They can help maintain humidity levels, creating a small-scale biome that better replicates what your geckos experience in the wild.

The Best Plants For Crested Geckos

There is no shortage of great plants for crested that you can consider. But if you want to create the most realistic environment for your pet lizard, here are the best plants to use.

1. Pillow Moss (Leucobryum glaucum)

Pillow moss is an unconventional plant. This plant doesn’t produce traditional leaves or stems like other gecko-friendly cultivars. Instead, it grows as small mounds of puff.

This is one of the best plants for crested geckos because you can use it as a ground covering. Many reptile enthusiasts utilize pillow moss to fill empty spaces or create a lawn-like effect that geckos can crawl over as they explore.

2. Snake Plant (Sansevieria laurentii)

Snake plants are hardy and high-impact. They produce thick and durable leaves from the plant’s base. The leaves have a distinct light-green pattern, making them stand out.

Crested geckos use snake plants in many ways. The tall leaves can provide shade and coverage. Many geckos also use the plant as a climbing or basking surface.

Low-maintenance and easy to take care of, snake plants are a worthy addition to any crested gecko home.

3. Polka Dot Plant (Hypoestes phyllostachya)

You can likely guess what this plant looks like from its name! The polka dot plant has large green leaves with eye-catching dots of white. It almost looks like someone spilled paint on them.

Polka dot plants work well in crested gecko plants because they need similar environmental conditions as the reptile to thrive. They don’t need much to stay healthy, and many plants will flourish in the enclosed environment.

Crested geckos will use the plant for climbing, hiding and general exploration.

4. Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema)

This simple plant for crested geckos can be a beautiful addition to their habitat. Chinese evergreens do well in simulated environments, handling the humidity and lighting conditions without issues. They also don’t need a ton of water, reducing maintenance requirements.

The fast-growing plant can take over, so you must prune regularly. Fortunately, the large leaves are easy to cut off, and geckos frequently use them for climbing.

5. Creeping Wire Vine (Muehlenbeckia complexa)

Also known as “Angel vines,” this plant is delicate but fast-growing. It produces thin, wiry vines with tender leaves. While the vines aren’t strong enough for climbing, creeping wire vine plants make excellent filler plants.

They can fill empty spaces in the enclosure and serve as ground cover. The plant requires frequent trimming to avoid unruly growth, but it loves the humidity in enclosed tanks. It prefers indirect sunlight, so you must plant the vine away from basking lamps.

6. Bird’s Nest Fern (Asplenium nidus)

The bright green leaves of the bird’s nest fern are gorgeous. The same goes for the wrinkled leaves. Because the leaves are so large, the plant makes great cover for crested geckos wanting to cool off and escape the heat.

Bird’s nest ferns love humidity and need moist soil to thrive. In the right conditions, the plant can overgrow your tank. Thus, you’ll need to prune it to avoid excessive growth.

7. Petra (Codiaeum variegatum)

The petra plant is known for its thick waxy leaves and stunning coloration. The plant can take on green, red, yellow, and purple colors.

The leaves are broad and sturdy, making them the perfect climbing surface for geckos. Petras do best towards the back of the tank due to their size. Like some other plants for crested geckos, this one will need trimming to prevent overgrowth.

8. Elephant Ear (Alocasia polly)

Here’s another plant for your crested gecko to climb. Elephant ear plants have massive leaves and thick stems, and many geckos use them for basking and play.

Elephant ears can be high maintenance. It needs indirect light and ample water. Plus, it can get surprisingly big, so these plants are best for larger tanks and experienced reptile keepers.

9. Musa Little Prince Banana Tree

The Musa Little Prince banana tree is another large plant variety that can be tough for beginners. But if you have a green thumb, it can be the centerpiece of your crested gecko habitat.

This plant can produce bananas but is largely ornamental in reptile enclosures. The trunk is wide and thick, while the leaves are sturdy. As a result, it’s a fantastic climbing plant that offers ample coverage for crested geckos needing to cool off.

10. Rabbit’s Foot Fern (Davallia/Humana tyermanii)

The rabbit’s foot fern is a smaller plant that grows to heights of only five inches. But what it lacks in height, it makes up for in width.

This plan produces soft branching stems covered in delicate leaves. It’s a joy for crested geckos because it provides tons of coverage. Many use it to hide, cool off and explore.

11. Weeping Fig (Ficus benjamina)

The weeping fig is a stunner! It won’t do much in the way of giving your crested gecko a new climbing path, but the beauty of this plant can enhance the enclosure in many ways. It gives your gecko room to explore while providing plenty of heat and light coverage.

The best weeping fig plants have thick trunks. Thicker trunks provide some climbing ability while ensuring optimal health for years.

12. Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)

Peace lilies are beautiful plants with all the makings of a must-have addition to your crested gecko tank. A healthy peace lily can grow several feet tall, producing expansive leaves for hiding and climbing. Plus, they can have eye-catching white flowers.

These are some of the best plants for crested geckos because they can thrive in terrariums. They like humidity, but keeping the plant in a pot is best to avoid soggy roots.

13. Bromeliads (Bromeliaceae)

Bromeliads are a staple plant in the reptile community. They’re hardy species that provide tons of color. You can find bromeliads in red, yellow and more.

The leaves are thick and climbable. These plants also catch water in the center like a cup, creating a new hydration source for your gecko.

Bromeliads are also versatile. You can grow them in the soil or treat them as air plants. Either way, they’re easy to keep healthy in a reptile enclosure.

14. Radiator Plants (Peperomia)

Radiator plants are small, stout, and easy to manage. They only grow to about a foot tall but produce broad waxy leaves your geckos will climb all over.

Most radiator plants are dark green, offering good contrast among other cultivars. They prefer indirect sunlight and don’t require much pruning, making them surprisingly low maintenance.

15. Shingle Plant (Rhaphidophora hayi)

Here’s a safe plant for crested geckos that can add a whole new dimension to the habitat. Shingle plants produce climbing vines that will latch onto most surfaces.

As the vine grows, large leaves will develop. They grow close together on the vine, creating a shingle-like appearance.

While shingle plants are too delicate for climbing, they do well in terrariums. The plant prefers high humidity levels, moist soil, warm temperatures, and a good amount of light.

16. Concinna Prayer Plant (Calathea concinna)

The Concinna prayer plant is a unique option to consider. It’s appropriately named for the unusual movement of the leaves. In the evening, the leaves curl in and close for the night. But in the morning, they open to give your crested gecko a large, sturdy surface to climb.

The leaves are beautiful, taking on a striped appearance. Healthy plants have good density, making them a good choice for coverage and climbing.

Concinna prayer plants require some skill and attention to keep healthy, so it’s best to hold off on this variety until you have experience keeping plants in your gecko’s habitat.

17. Zebra Plant (Calathea zebrina)

The zebra plant actually looks similar to the Concinna prayer plant. It has a similar striped pattern on its leaves. However, this variety gets significantly larger.

The huge leaves give your gecko plenty of places to climb and explore. It can require more attention than newer herpetologists can handle. But if you have a large enclosure and don’t mind regular trimmings, it’s a great addition.

18. Pink Quill (Tillandsia cyanea)

The pink quill is a perfect live plant for crested gecko enclosures if you want a pop of color. The leaves of the plant are thin and grass-like. They grow from the base and don’t take up as much room as plants that spread.

The star of the pink quill is the bloom. It sprouts from a central stalk, unveiling a vibrant flower safe for geckos!

Pink quills do well in high-humidity environments like a crested gecko tank and are hardy enough for climbing and exploration.

19. Rubber Fig (Ficus Elastica)

Also known as a rubber tree, this plant is a common sight in homes. It’s a low-maintenance species that does well indoors and can help purify the air.

Thanks to the size potential of rubber figs, it’s best to reserve the plant to larger crested gecko enclosures. If you have the space, your geckos will enjoy climbing up the trunk and basking on the large leaves.

20. Ponytail Palm (Beaucarnea recurvata)

Contrary to how it looks, ponytail palms are not like traditional palms. They’re succulents that thrive in humidity. It’s best to keep these plants in a pot to accommodate their need for wet roots.

Fortunately, ponytail palms stay relatively small, so you can easily tuck the pot into a corner of the enclosure. These plants have thick trunks for climbing and soft grass-like foliage for coverage.

21. Lucky Bamboo (Dracaena sanderiana)

Bamboo is a versatile and safe plant for crested geckos that you can use in different ways. Many herpetology buffs use dry bamboo to create a network of climbable paths. However, lucky bamboo plants that are alive can be great additions, too.

These plants grow quickly and give your crested geckos new paths to reach tall plants. They’re also easy to grow and don’t require much maintenance.

22. Lemon Butter Fern (Nephrolepis cordifolia)

Here’s another fern cultivar that provides beauty and coverage. It’s not strong enough to support climbing, but the delicate leaves are a joy for geckos to explore. It also adds density, creating a lush environment in the tank.

The plant gets its name from the citrus scent it gives off. Don’t worry. It’s safe for geckos!

The best way to plant the lemon butter fern is to place it on the cool side of the tank and trim it often to avoid overgrowth.

23. Jade Jewel (Dracaena fragrans)

Jade jewels are a slow-growing plant that doesn’t require much attention. It has a thick trunk that sprouts striped leaves at the top. Despite how floppy the leaves look, they’re strong enough to support climbing.

These plants are hardy and can tolerate various lighting conditions. The main requirement is to make sure it drains well to avoid root rot.

24. Maidenhair Fern (Adiantum raddianum)

Maidenhair ferns are soft and delicate. Like other ferns, they have thin stems that sprout lightweight leaves.

The cool thing about this plant is that it grows wide. As a result, it creates good light coverage and density your crested gecko will love.

You can plant the Maidenhair fern in a pot or directly in a soil-based substrate. Many reptile keepers like to put it in a hanging basket for more vertical impact.

25. Jade Plant (Crassula ovata)

Here’s another hardy succulent. The jade plant, or emerald green succulent, thrives in humidity. However, you must be wary about overwatering.

These live plants for crested geckos don’t take up much room, so you can plant several throughout the bottom of the enclosure. The thick and fleshy leaves are sturdy enough for these lizards to climb.

26. Creeping Fig (Ficus pumila)

Creeping figs are an excellent addition to the back of the tank. Like the creeping wire vine, this plant latches onto any surface. It grows quickly and can cover the rear glass for a more natural look.

The leaves are too thin to support crested geckos. However, a mature creeping fig can develop sturdy vines your gecko will enjoy hanging on.

Trimming is a must for creeping vines. They thrive in the humidity and can quickly get out of control if you don’t trim them back.

27. Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)

Spider plants are like natural air filters! They can improve the air quality in the terrarium while creating lush vegetation your geckos can hide under.

These plants produce long, spindly leaves, and many reptile enthusiasts use them to provide coverage at the bottom of the terrarium. You can also plant them in hanging baskets, allowing the leaves to fall as they grow.

28. Arrowhead Plant (Syngonium podophyllum)

Arrowhead plants are a vining cultivar that develops arrow-shaped leaves. These plants are great for crested geckos because of their strength. As the arrowhead matures, it sends out thick vines your gecko can easily climb.

Pair that with the large leaves offering shade; this plant is a gecko staple. It does well in the temperature range geckos require, but you must water it sparingly to avoid root issues.

29. Seemannia Sylvatica

This species is a short plant flowering that spreads wide. The roots are expansive, and the leaves will grow just as wide as the root base.

The best thing about this plant is that it produces tube-shaped red flowers year-long. They provide a nice pop of color and are safe for most types of geckos.

The plant requires regular watering and low-light conditions. With the right care, it can flourish in a crested gecko tank.

30. Earth Star Plant (Cryptanthus)

Here’s another safe plant for crested geckos that likes to spread its wings. The Earth star plant doesn’t get very tall. However, it grows long wavy leaves that span up to two feet wide.

The leaves are strong enough for crested geckos to climb and big enough to provide great shade. A healthy plant will produce white flowers at the base. Give the plant indirect light for optimal health while keeping it in moist, well-draining soil.

31. Philodendron

Philodendrons are versatile plants you can grow in many ways. You can hang it up in a pot and allow the leaves to trail down. On the substrate, it becomes a mounding plant for climbing. You can even grow Philodendrons on branches of other plants.

No matter how you grow it, Philodendron plants are fast-growing. They’re also hardy enough to complement the enclosure’s decor throughout your gecko’s life.

32. Nerve Plant (Fittonia)

Nerve plants love humidity! They’re popular in crested gecko habitats because they can thrive while giving the reptile massive platforms to climb.

These plants produce wide waxy leaves with a distinct vein pattern. They don’t get tall, but the leaves will spread wide. You can also prune the plant to keep it tight and dense when it gets leggy.

33. Pothos, AKA Devil’s Ivy (Epipremnum aureum)

Pothos plants are another mainstay in the herpetology world. This vining plant grows quickly and produces vibrant green-colored leaves. The umbrella-like leaves are perfect for shelter.

Meanwhile, the vines can support the weight of a crested gecko. It’s a versatile plant that provides enrichment, beauty, and comfort.

34. Dwarf Umbrella Tree (Schefflera arboricola)

This small plant is great for creating the look of a lush forest. The leaves grow in a fanned arrangement. It looks similar to an overturned umbrella.

Despite its petite footprint, the dwarf umbrella tree is surprisingly sturdy. It holds up well to climbing and is shapeable to meet your needs. You can trim it to maintain a bushy profile while managing its growth.

Plants That Are Not Safe For Crested Geckos

The abovementioned varieties are top-notch options that are safe and will enhance your crested gecko’s habitat. However, these are some plants you should avoid.

These species can be dangerous for crested geckos through ingestion or physical contact.

  • English Ivy
  • Milkweed
  • Begonias
  • Ivy (Hedera spp.)
  • Poison Ivy
  • Voodoo Lily
  • Calla Lily
  • Hyacinth
  • Dumbcane (Dieffenbachia)
  • Cycads
  • Mistletoe
  • Bracken Fern (Pteridium aquilinum)
  • Azalea
  • Holly
  • Tomato plants
  • Wisteria

Conclusion

As you can see, there are plenty of safe plants for crested geckos that you can choose from. And what’s great about that is you’re able to choose the perfect fit for your style and enclosure!

If you have any thoughts or questions about the live plants listed above, send us a message. We’re more than happy to help!

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