Plant beading is going viral on TikTok – but this houseplant jewellery trend comes with a warning from experts

The plant beading trend is taking over TikTok – but experts warn against it for more reasons than one

A selection of houseplants atop a chest of drawers
(Image credit: Future PLC/Joanna Henderson)

We all love a good trend. And sometimes we even participate in one involuntarily because we’re being subconsciously influenced by our environment. But there are trends that we’d rather sit out – and the plant beading trend is one of those houseplant trends that we’ll be giving a miss amid the warnings from plant experts.

Currently enjoying the status of TikTok virality, the trend was popularised by users of the app such as @megz7117 whose video has amassed almost 2 million views to date. The concept of plant beading is essentially jewellery for your houseplants, where owners put colourful beads on the stems of their plants.

While we appreciate the creativity behind the idea, there are several risks that come with this method. So instead, we’d opt for some naturally interesting and colourful houseplants if you’re looking to add something a little different and extra to your home. 

A hallway with an open door and two large houseplants

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Experts warn against the plant beading trend

At first glance, plant beading seems like the perfect way to liven up your best houseplants and add some more colour to their greenery. So what is actually the problem with putting beads on your plants?

@megz7117

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‘I wouldn't recommend beading houseplants because, while it does look pretty, eventually when the plant starts developing secondary growth, the bead will most likely suffocate the vine and kill that part of the plant,’ says Petar Ivanov, Fantastic Gardeners' gardening and plant expert. ‘Most houseplants' stems would probably grow larger than the internal diameter of the bead and that will cause problems in the future.’

Craig Wilson, co-founder, director & in-house gardening expert at Gardeners Dream, continues, ‘As plants grow and their stems thicken, tightly fitted beads can constrict them, leading to a condition known as girdling. This constriction can severely restrict the flow of water and nutrients, essentially strangling the plant. Over time, this can lead to stunted growth, weakened stems, and potentially the death of the plant.’

Petar Ivanov portrait
Petar Ivanov

Petar Ivanov is one of the company's top-performing experts and manages over six teams of gardeners, delivering stunning landscape results and fostering a deep connection with nature through his work.

A selection of houseplants atop a chest of drawers

(Image credit: Future PLC/Tim Young)

And that’s only issue number one. There’s more. The other reservation experts have about plant beading is the potential of creating a breeding ground for pests, bacteria and infections.

‘These beads provide a place for bugs and other plant pests to hide, which can be very dangerous for the plant,’ Petar warns.

Craig elaborates on the danger, ‘Beads can create moist, sheltered environments that are ideal for the proliferation of pests and diseases. Trapped moisture against the stem is particularly conducive to fungal infections, which can be challenging to detect and treat until significant damage has occurred.’

So if you’re looking for a way to spice up the look of your plant, leave the beads and perhaps just opt for a colourful and patterned plant pot or one of the more unusual houseplant varieties to add to your collection.

Sara Hesikova
News Writer

Sara Hesikova has been Ideal Home’s News Writer since July 2023, bringing the Ideal Home’s readership breaking news stories from the world of home and interiors. Graduating from London College of Fashion with a bachelor’s degree in fashion journalism in 2016, she got her start in niche fashion and lifestyle magazines like Glass and Alvar as a writer and editor before making the leap into interiors. She feels the two are intrinsically connected - if someone puts an effort into what they wear, they most likely also care about what they surround themselves with.