Giving the Green Light: 11 Different Types Of Dark Green Plants

In the wonderful world of plants, there’s a great rainbow of colors that can be observed growing naturally in a variety of environments. However, as you might expect, the majority of those colors are a shade of dark green. There are many different types of dark green plants.

Some are edible, some others are used for medicinal purposes, and some are just fascinating to leave grow and observe. Here are some interesting examples and facts about dark green plants:

1. Chlorella


This algae is rich in protein and vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K, and is said to contain over 100 nutrients! Chlorella is considered one of the most nutritious foods available. It has been shown to be effective in preventing cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and other health problems.

It can also help with weight loss by increasing metabolism and helping you burn fat more efficiently.

It grows naturally on freshwater ponds and is often sold in stores as a powder. In this powdered form, you can simply mix it with water, juice, or a smoothie to consume it and make the most of its fantastic health benefits.

In general, chlorella is basically one of the plant kingdom’s greatest gifts and super-est of superfoods!

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2. Horsetail


The perennial, herbaceous plant known as the horsetail is found growing in moist areas such as bogs, swamps, and marshes across North America. They can often be found growing to around 2 feet tall and display a great number of small leaves across their branches.

Horsetail was originally used in Chinese medicine, thousands of years ago. It contains all kinds of key nutrients and minerals like silica, calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron, zinc, copper, manganese, phosphorus, and sulfur.

Horsetails are used medicinally to treat a great variety of ailments such as arthritis, asthma, bronchitis, constipation, diabetes, eczema, fatigue, gout, hay fever, kidney stones, liver problems, osteoporosis, psoriasis, rheumatism, sinusitis, skin conditions, ulcers, urinary tract infections, and yeast infections.

Talk about another super health food!

3. Kelp


Kelps are large brown seaweeds that grow mainly along the coastlines of North America and Europe but can be found growing naturally in oceans all over the world.

It’s another plant with a whole host of great health benefits because kelp is rich in iodine, vitamin A, vitamin B12, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E, as well as minerals like calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, and silicon.

It can be used medicinally to prevent and treat allergies, colds, diarrhea, indigestion, insomnia, muscle spasms, nervousness, respiratory ailments, stress, stomachaches, and tuberculosis.

Because of all these fantastic health benefits, kelp features quite often in a variety of cuisines. It has a pretty mild flavor so works well in plenty of different dishes, with plenty of combinations with other ingredients.

4. Moringa


Moringa is the first tree on our list and is native predominantly to India and Pakistan. However, the plant is also used in other countries in Asia and even in Africa as food or for medicinal purposes.

Moringa has been used for centuries as a food source and medicine. It contains nutrients like beta carotene, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, riboflavin, selenium, thiamine, and zinc.

Moringa is used medicinally to treat anemia, asthma, burns, coughs, digestive issues, dysentery, eye diseases, headaches, inflammation, malaria, menopause symptoms, oral health, pain relief, pneumonia, scurvy, sore throats, toothaches, wounds, and worms.

Interestingly, because the tree grows in such desolate climates, it is very easy to grow and doesn’t require a lot of water. In fact, the moringa tree can grow pretty well in your own backyard, giving you a tasty, healthy tree to feed off!

5. Spruce


Spruces are evergreen trees that grow very commonly all over North America. In fact, the spruce is one of the most popular trees across the whole continent!

This is mainly because it’s a very hardy tree, can withstand some pretty tough growing conditions, and doesn’t require a great deal of water or other forms of maintenance.

They’re probably most commonly associated with snowy forests, growing pine cones, and towering on the sides of mountains.

However, aside from their natural growing environment, spruce trees are also used frequently for landscaping purposes. You’ll often see them lining the sidewalks and streets of towns and cities in the United States, as well as in some backyards and patios.

6. Elephant’s Ear

Elephant's Ear

This plant boasts a gorgeous dark green leaf and gets its name from its uncanny resemblance in shape to the ear of an elephant.

However, only cultivated forms of this plant, that are grown for ornamental purposes, go by this name. Its original form is actually known as Taro and is grown mainly for food and medicinal purposes.

The kind of elephant’s ear you’re most likely to see in North America is the ornamental kind, as it makes for a great indoor potted plant. The wide, monotone green leaves make for an impactful, yet muted aesthetic that works well in a variety of home decors.

7. Interior Live Oak

Interior Live Oak

Another of North America’s most populous trees, the interior live oak can grow to heights of around 100 feet in good growing conditions and will often spread its dark green foliage out wide.

The tree has a particularly interesting use for people who live in coastal regions in the United States. Here, interior live oaks are often planted to provide protection for houses from hurricanes.

However, these coastal versions of the interior live oak are more often a separate variety altogether, known as a coastal live oak.

The shiny, deep green leaves of this tree make it a very popular addition to many North American backyards and public parks.

8. California Bay Laurel

Types of dark green plants

As you probably guessed already from the name, this shrub is native to California but can also be seen growing naturally in parts of Oregon.

It grows in two varieties: either evergreen or deciduous. Both of these varieties produce small white flowers that bloom in spring and their leaves can be used to make herbal tea and essential oil.

In fact, these teas and essential oils are said to be beneficial for treating coughs, colds, sore throats, and flu.

Despite these benefits, like with most essential oils, the oil drawn from a California Bay Laurel is actually toxic and can do serious harm if consumed on its own.

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9. Yucca

Types of dark green plants

The yucca is most commonly used as a houseplant and can offer a great splash of dark green to your interior decor.

Native to North America, this plant is a member of the lily family and produces gorgeous white flowers.

One of the reasons this plant is so popular for growing inside people’s homes or in their backyards is how hardy it is. The yucca can grow in even the poorest of soil conditions and survive in dry environments.

There are also plenty of different varieties of yucca that grow across North America, including the Alaskan Giant, Burgundy Giant, Mountain Giant, and Prairie Giant.

Like so many plants on this list, the yucca is commonly used for medicinal purposes and is said to be useful for treating coughs, colds, and flu. Not to mention, the fact that this plant contains vitamins A, B, C, D, E, K, as well as calcium, sodium, iron, and potassium makes it very beneficial to make tea from.

10. Garden Phlox

Types of dark green plants

This plant is one of the easiest to grow indoors and offers a beautiful splash of color when planted in full sun. Its flowers come in several colors, including red, pink, purple, blue, yellow, orange, and white.  However, the beautifully dark green leaves provide a stunning backdrop for all these hues to transform any interior decor.

This perennial flower grows well in a variety of climates and tends to bloom in early spring and late fall. Once established, the garden phlox flower is very hardy and will require little maintenance to keep it looking at its best.

It is another plant that’s native to North America and is most commonly found growing naturally in the Midwest of the United States.

11. Snake Plant

Types of dark green plants

The final dark green plant on our list is something of a towering giant compared to the others we’ve looked at. It gets its name from the way it snakes upwards in long, spear-shaped leaves.

It has a variety of alternative, somewhat amusing, names such as dragon tree, Saint George’s sword, and mother-in-law’s tongue!

Native to tropical regions of Africa, the plant is used all over the world for decorative and medicinal purposes. In India, the plant is used to treat fever, coughs, asthma, and bronchitis.

A similar species to this plant is known as dracaena Trichomanes, which can be found growing in Central America and the Caribbean. Here, this plant is also employed for medicinal purposes, treating skin infections and arthritis.


As we mentioned earlier, the natural world is packed full of beautiful dark green plants. Whether they flower with gorgeous green leaves and petals or big, bold trees with wide-stretching green foliage, this color appears all throughout nature.

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