dracaena varieties

9 Dracaena Plants Types and Varieties to Grow

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Are you thinking about growing houseplants this year? If so, you might want to consider the numerous different types of Dracaena plants that are out there. 

Dracaena is a type of tropical plant that is known for its attractive foliage. There are many different Dracaena plant types, and each one has its own unique features. 

If you’re looking for a striking and easy-to-care-for houseplant, then Dracaena plants may be the perfect choice for you. Keep reading to learn more about these beautiful plants!

Here are some of the most beautiful dracaena varieties you can grow.

1. D. fragrans

A slow-growing shrub usually sold as potted plants with lengths varying from 6 inches to 5 feet, Dracaena fragrans is simply one of the most popular and best interior plants. It has long, rugged leaves that have a resemblance to corn foliage, hence the common name Corn Plant.

The species has entirely green leaves but most houseplant aficionados prefer its more-colorful cultivars, like Massangeana, which accounts for nearly 90% of the corn plants sold. 


Also called Mass Cane, this variety has a rosette of long, sword-shaped leaves highlighted with golden-yellow stripes in the middle.

‘Lemon Lime’ 

With stunning bright green and yellow leaves with white stripes, ‘Lemon Lime’ is one of the most breathtaking cultivars to behold. It has elongated lanceolate leaves that grow in a rosette style around a central woody stem.

Like many other cultivars, this one grows best in low light. It’s perfect for brightening up any home and can grow up to 10 feet tall.


This variety has stripes along the edges in shades of cream. The leaves are sword-like and often have yellow edges. 

‘Lemon Surprise

Another citrus-inspired dracaena variety to grow is ‘Lemon Surprise.’ This plant has variegated foliage in alternating shades of lime green and dark green, with narrow white stripes in between. The leaves tend to be pointed and grow in a curling, twisting pattern. 

Unlike the ‘Lemon Lime’ cultivar, these plants don’t grow that large – usually only two to three feet tall. It grows best in bright, indirect sunlight but can tolerate a bit of shade as well. 


‘Rothiana’ is known for its leathery leaves with white edges. 


Like many of the other varieties of dracaena on this list, ‘Limelight’ has electric lime-green leaves. In fact, its unusual foliage color looks almost translucent, giving it a one-of-a-kind appearance in your home. 

Another unique fact about this plant is that the colors remain vibrant regardless of the lighting conditions. Whether it’s full or partial shade, this plant holds its colors well. The only thing to note is that you need to make sure the soil doesn’t get too wet – this variety is prone to root rot. 


This corn plant cultivar is known for its dark green leaves with thick yellow bands. It is often confused with ‘Massangeana.’


‘Lisa’ plants are some of the hardest you’ll ever find. They have dark green leaves that are glossy and lance-shaped. It looks much like ‘Janet Craig,’ another popular variety, but has narrower leaves. 

Out of all the varieties of dracaena plants you can grow, this one is one of the best at tolerating low light. Its foliage grows upward in a slight curling fashion. 


‘Dorado’ is one of the best varieties for growing in the shade. This houseplant has broad green leaves that arch and are also quite glossy, but they can also be variegated. They are green with thin yellow margins, twisting and curling in the typical dracaena fashion – but still not quite as pronounced.

‘Hawaiian Sunshine’

These dracaena plants grow in an upright fashion, perfect for adding a striking accent to an otherwise boring corner of your home. The leaves are glossy green with dark green edges. They also have pale lime green stripes running down the center. These low-light houseplants grow best in bright, indirect light. 

2. D. marginata

Popular for its distinctive appearance, Dracaena Marginata or also known as Madagascar Dragon Tree or Red-edged dracaena, boasts bold but elegant dark green leaves with red margins. What makes this slow-growing plant a favorite for most houseplant enthusiasts is that its stems can be trained into different shapes which can give it different architectural vibes.


One of the most famous cultivars of D. marginata, this variety has red and cream stripes alternating on narrow green leaves. That is, after all, where this cultivar gets its name from!

This plant is native to Madagascar and looks almost completely pink at first glance. 

3. D. reflexa

Commonly called Pleomele, it generally has dense dark green rosettes of leaves swirling around the end of the stems that can be used as table plants, bushes, or trees. D. reflexa is best known for its flexible stems and its short, dense leaf rosettes that spiral tightly around the stems.

If you grow this plant in good enough light, you may find that the foliage remains growing even more compact to the base. 

‘Song of India’

Song of India’ also known as D. reflexa ‘Variegata,’ is a gorgeous ornamental houseplant with yellow-cream and green foliage. It has a yellow margin running down the center of each leaf, a feature that highlights the short, sword-like leaves. 

The leaves are reflexed, meaning they bend at a 90-degree angle in the center. If you’re able to get the plant to bloom indoors, you’ll be rewarded with fragrant white flower clusters and bright orange berries. 

‘Song of Jamaica’

‘Song of Jamaica’  has white longitudinal stripes. This multi-stemmed plant has lime green and darker green variegation. It tolerates low light and while it doesn’t have the fragrant flowers of ‘Song of India’ (or the berries), it’s still a great addition to any home. 

4. D. sanderiana

Ribbon Plant, Chinese Water Bamboo or Lucky bamboo plant might have a striking resemblance with bamboo, but it is not actually bamboo. Usually sold as stem cuttings, this tough little plant can be grown in water for a year or more.

A popular indoor plant in Asia, it’s believed to bring good luck. It isn’t a member of the bamboo family, again, but instead gets its name for its upright growth pattern of bamboo-like stems. 

It will start to decline eventually if held in just water so it would be best to supply nutrition occasionally. The resemblance with bamboo makes it associated with the art of Feng Shui.

5. D. surculosa

Unlike the other members of Dracaena, Dracaena surculosa (also Dracaena godseffiana) has oval-shaped leaves with a pointed tip. It is commonly called Dracaena Gold Dust or Spotted Dracaena because of its cream and golden yellow blotches in its dark green shiny leaves.

It is also called Dracaena surculosa ‘Japanese Bamboo’ because of its thin bamboo-like stems. If grown in proper condition, it might even reward you with radial white inflorescence.

Other popular cultivars/varieties include: ‘Florida Beauty’ which has bigger and denser spots, and Dracaena surculosa ‘Kelleri’ with thicker elliptical leaves.

6. Green Dracaena (D. deremensis)

Although Green Dracaena isn’t nearly as common as other species and cultivars, it’s still a top contender when you’re looking for the best dracaena types to grow. Some of the most popular varieties include:

‘Janet Craig’

‘Janet Craig’ is a popular plant for landscaping as well as for growing indoors as a houseplant. It can grow up to 10 feet tall but its size is easily controlled with regular pruning. It has dark and wide green leaves that are glossy and graceful, held up along thick stems.

Not only that, but ‘Janet Craig’ is one of the few types of dracaena plants that produces flowers. These are bright white and fragrant, but it’s important to note that the plant only blooms indoors when conditions are optimal. 


As the name suggests, ‘Compacta’ is one of the most compact kinds of Green Dracaena you can grow. It is recognized as a dwarf cultivar. 

This house plant has five-inch long leaves that cluster together tightly along slow-growing stems. ‘Compacta’ grows slowly, but only needs to be watered every now and then, when the soil is totally dry. 


‘Warneckii’ is another popular variety, ideal for low-light conditions. It has white-striped leaves and is variegated. It can grow up to four feet tall. This variety is mostly carefree, requiring very little maintenance. It thrives in low light and looks much like a small, spiky indoor tree more than a houseplant!


This kind of dracaena has super long leaves, each of which can grow to around 18 inches long. These leaves are two inches wide on stems that each grows to about four feet tall. Each leaf has a single, bold, white stripe that runs right down its center. 

7. Gold Dust Dracaena (D. godseffiana

A small shrub-like variety, this species only grows to about two and a half feet tall. It has three- to four-inch-long leaves that are long and thin, spiraling around wiry stems. The leaves are speckled with yellow, hence the name of the plant. These unfortunately fade back to white as the plant gets older.

8. Slender Dragon Tree (D. arborea)

This variety is known for its single, straight woody stem. It has spiky foliage growing at the top, with most trees branching out into two or more branches. Its leaves are long, skinny, and lance-shaped, growing almost completely straight to give the appearance of a spiked, rounded crown.

9. D. Trifasciata

If you love the idea of growing a snake plant (Sansevieria trifasciata), you should consider D. trifasciata.


They’re actually the same plant! 

You might not have heard this news yet, since the snake plant (also known as mother-in-law’s tongue or the viper’s bowstring hemp) was considered a plant in the Sansevieria genus (a succulent) until 2017. The classification was recently changed so that this plant now belongs to the dracaena family.

It has tall, thick variegated leaves that are shaped like swords. 

Consider Growing One of These Gorgeous Cultivars Today

Dracaena plants are some of the most popular indoor plants. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, making them a great choice for any home. There are so many types of dracaena plants, each with their own unique characteristics. 

Now that you know what kind of options are out there, which ones will you choose to grow? Check our blog post to learn how to care for dracaena plants.

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