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Growing Two Plants Together : Here’s What You Need To Know

Growing Two Plants Together : Here’s What You Need To Know

You wouldn’t generally come across two houseplants of different species sharing the same pot. While it does seem efficient to put multiple plants in a pot large enough for them, such practice is rather uncommon.

Sharing a single pot to grow multiple plants comes with some inherent complications. In case you are short on space at home, you might be wondering whether you should economize the space by keeping multiple plants in the same pot.

Well, to answer your question, that is completely viable. You may use a pot for as many houseplants as you wish to keep in it.

However, it’s imperative to prioritize certain factors carefully and create a favorable environment to support their growth. Without proper care and attention, the plants wouldn’t thrive well together.

Can you grow two plants together?

Yes, it is possible to share a pot with two or more plants and help them grow together.

To understand whether you can keep two plants in a single pot or not, you would first need an understanding of the associated complications. Once you understand what exactly makes it difficult to grow plants from different species in the same pot, you should be able to tackle these challenges strategically. Only then, you can grow two plants together.

Firstly, every plant species has its basic requirements. For instance, an aloe vera plant would need relatively dry soil, while ferns require constantly moist soil conditions. It would be quite challenging or even impossible to keep two plants with different requirements in the same pot.

When you place two or more plant species in the same pot, they tend to compete against each other for resources. The dominant plant would grow quickly, developing a larger root system and barely leaving any space for the smaller plant. This ultimately prevents the smaller plant from growing healthy and thriving well.

Therefore, it is possible to grow the plants together. However, you need to pay attention to the plant species you are putting together, besides other factors. As long as you do it right, there shouldn’t be an issue.

How to plant multiple plants in one pot?

You would have to take an extremely careful approach while planting multiple plants in the same pot. Planting them right at the very onset itself would help you avoid various problems in the future. Check out a few things that you might want to bear in mind in this regard.

Spread out the plants

It would be a good idea to spread out plants of different species as much as possible, rather than planting them together. This is because the roots tend to intertwine in case the plants are too close together.

This can make it quite hard to separate the plants in case you need to transplant them elsewhere. Moreover, certain plants use their roots to kill or damage the roots of nearby rival plants.

Arrange the plants based on their sizes

This is more of an aesthetic factor to make sure your plants look perfect even when you put different species in a pot.

In general, it is ideal to place the shortest plants near the edge of the pot and the tallest ones around the center. In the case of cascading plants, however, place them as close to the edge as possible, such that they can spread out of the pot perfectly.

Pay attention to the colors

While planting two plants of different species in the same pot, you should pay attention to the shade of the foliage and the colors of the flowers.

You could either go for contrasting colors or pick close shades and colors to create a relatively alluring look. This way, your plants would look great together rather than seeming like you crammed them together just for the sake of it.

Put only two or three plants in a pot at most

Although plants can share a pot if they are compatible with each other, placing too many plants in the same pot wouldn’t be a good idea.

Do not put more than two or three plants in a pot, as any more might lead to competition. Although you would have fewer plants per pot this way, you may stay assured of healthier foliage.

Leave space for enough airflow

Humidity has a major impact on plant health. While some plants do thrive better in humid conditions, others prefer drier surroundings. Now, a pot congested with plants would naturally become too humid and result in wet leaves and stems.

If the two plants that you are planting tend to grow bushy on growing up, make sure to pick a pot large enough to prevent such congestion. Leave enough space between the plants and place the pot in an airy spot to ensure adequate airflow.

What are the challenges in growing multiple plants in a pot?

While growing two or more plants in the same pot is efficient, this practice is rather uncommon. This is because it does come with a number of challenges. Some of the key hitches that you might face while trying this practice are as follows.


Not all plants are compatible with the same environment. The basic needs of different plant species vary, which implies that it might be hard to provide the ideal condition for both plants in the same pot.

For instance, if you had one plant that requires plenty of sunlight and one that prefers a shaded environment, it wouldn’t be logical to put them in the same pot.

Soil fertility

Unlike in the case of a plant growing directly from the ground, a potted plant has to draw its nutrients from only a limited quantity of soil. Hence, it is much easier for the soil in your pot to become drained of nutrients.

When you place two plants in the same pot, they naturally start drawing out the minerals and nutrients at a much higher rate together. This would cause the soil to go infertile sooner than usual.


As described earlier, plants grown in the same pot tend to become competitive for the available resources. The larger plant between the two would grow and hog most of the sunlight, water, and nutrients.

Quite naturally, this would prevent the other plant from growing up healthy. It might eventually die as a result, which beats the whole purpose of planting two plants in the same pot.


Certain plant species, such as many tropical plants, require a humid environment. Indoor air is too dry for this, requiring you to mist the plants and maintain a moist environment.

While misting is necessary for such plants, excess moisture can lead to various problems too.

Now, keeping two plants in the same pot would usually reduce airflow, leaving the plants wet. It is therefore injudicious to mist plants sharing a common pot. This significantly limits the range of plants that you can grow this way.

Tips to grow plants together

While trying to grow two or more plants together in the same pot, you need to make sure to help them thrive. As mentioned earlier, a variety of problems could emerge and it might not work out well if you aren’t careful. Here are a few tips on how you can grow multiple plants together.


As the nutrient consumption from the soil increases, so should the fertilization rate. The two plants would naturally drain the soil much faster than a single one, which is why it makes sense to fertilize more often. You could choose to either increase the amount of fertilizer per dose or fertilize the soil more often.

Watering and drainage

Just like fertilizers, a pot with two plants would also require more water. With both plants drawing moisture from the soil, it would dry up significantly faster than your other pots that have only one plant in them.

Pay attention to the dryness of the soil and make sure to keep watering the pot frequently enough. Also, you might want to keep three to four drainage holes under the pot to prevent the soil from waterlogging as a result of frequent watering.

Growth rate

Firstly, avoid planting fast-growing species in the pot. This is because such plants would be more likely to contend with each other for resources.

Moreover, the plants would outgrow the pot fast, requiring you to either transplant them to a bigger pot or prune them very often. It would be wiser to choose plants with slow or moderate growth rates. You might also want to control the growth rates by limiting exposure to sunlight and pruning the plants occasionally.

Get rid of unwanted branches

While pruning away unnecessary branches is always beneficial, this is especially important in the case of plants sharing a common pot. Firstly, the unwanted parts of the plant would be consuming an excess amount of nutrients from the soil.

Secondly, too many branches growing on plants that share a pot can make the pot congested. Once in a while, use shears or scissors to carefully remove such branches.

Never trim the main stem

In some cases, you may prune the main stem of a plant to prevent it from growing taller and promote lateral growth. While this may be helpful, lateral growth is something that you would want to avoid while growing multiple plants in a pot. Hence, be careful while pruning away unwanted branches and make sure to not cut the stem.


By taking the right approach, you should be able to grow two plants together. This guide should help to go about it in a well-informed manner rather than having to experiment.

If you love plants, you might be open to experimentation. However, adhering to the prescribed guidelines will work well for you. As long as you comply with the basics, you can grow multiple plants together in the same pot.