Check out our list of 13 awesome plants sure to give you the heebie-jeebies this October!
1. Bat Flower
Easy to grow indoors as a houseplant, the unusual deep purple tropical flowers, with fringed winged petals and long drooping whiskers, resemble a bat in flight.
Native to tropical rainforests in Southeast Asia, this plant will grow wild in shady areas with high humidity.
And these incredible flowers can grow up to a foot wide with whiskers up to 28 inches long!
Seed packets are available for purchase from Seedville through Amazon.
2. Black elephant ear (Colocasia esculenta)
This striking tropical perennial has massive black and purple heart-shaped leaves that can reach a foot wide and three feet in length.
If you’re looking for a striking display of darkness this Halloween, the cultivar ‘Black Magic’ is the way to go.
‘Black Magic’ Elephant Ears
Hardy to zone 8 and up, this plant can easily be grown indoors even in colder regions—as long as you can find a spot with high humidity and indirect sunlight. Just keep this in mind: It could be massive!
Bulbs are available at Eden Brothers.
3. Cobra plant (Darlingtonia californica)
Also known as California pitcher plant, this is a carnivorous plant that can grow up to three feet in height.
It has tube-like leaves that flare out at the end like a hood, and the thorny protuberances make them look like cobras with fangs, ready to strike!
Try growing it if you dare. Recommended for experienced growers of carnivorous plants, it is finicky, requiring fairly specific growing conditions.
You can find the seeds in packets of 10 available through Amazon.
4. Cockscomb (Celosia cristata)
This easy-to-grow annual has showy, fuzzy, blood-red flowers that resemble brains.
You can also find varieties in pink, orange, yellow, green, and white.
While they bloom outdoors in late summer and early fall, they are also easy to grow indoors for your Halloween display!
‘Red Velvet Cake’ celosia
You can order seeds for ‘Red Velvet Cake’ from Burpee, a cultivar with deep crimson red flowers.
For detailed information on growing cockscombs, see our complete growing guide.
5. Corpus flower (Amorphophallus titanum)
As its name suggests, this flower smells like death when it is in bloom. Some have described the smell as similar to rotting meat or garbage.
The disgusting smell is meant to mimic that of a dead animal, to attract pollinators such as dung beetles and flesh flies that typically feed on rotting flesh.
If you’re hoping to grow it for your Halloween display, you can order seeds from Amazon, but keep this in mind: It can take up to seven to 10 years for a single flower to bloom!
6. Devil’s Walking Stick (Aralia spinosa)
In addition to its fearsome name, this large deciduous shrub is armed with sharp pointed stems, leaf petioles and branches, and is topped with a crown of huge compound leaves.
It produces clusters of deep purple or black berries in fall.
It may look like another world, but it is native to much of eastern North America, growing naturally in disturbed areas along the edges of forests.
devil’s walking stick
Devil’s walking stick is easy to transplant or propagate by division.
You can also easily grow this plant from seed, which is available for purchase through Amazon.
7. Ghost Plant (Monotropa uniflora)
Also known as the Indian pipe or corpse plant, this fearsome succulent contains no chlorophyll, giving it a completely white appearance.
Because it doesn’t need light to grow, it can survive in even the darkest of places. What’s more, it is parasitic, stealing nutrients from neighboring plants through its roots.
Since it is not capable of photosynthesis, it is dependent on specific fungi, trees and decaying plants in the soil for survival. It can be found growing in the wild in moist, cool soil, often near beech trees.
Although its growing conditions are difficult to replicate at home, you can find it naturally growing in dark woody areas where the soil is rich and moist.
Ghost plants play an important role in a healthy forest ecosystem, so it’s best to leave them be and enjoy them from afar!
8. Halloween pansy (Viola x wittrockiana)
If you’re looking for something dark and mysterious to plant outside this fall, these black pansies are sure to create a surprising and spooky atmosphere.
Pansies are cold-hardy annuals that work well both outside in the garden and in indoor pots and window boxes.
‘Halloween’ pansy has midnight black petals with bright yellow centers that are dotted with hints of purple.
You can find the seeds in packs of 500 available from True Leaf Market.
Learn more about growing pansies here.
9. Marigold (Tagete patula)
Who wouldn’t love some fuzzy orange marigolds to bring some color to the fall garden?
While perhaps not the scariest or most bizarre of flowers, these cold-hardy favorites are a great option for adding some Halloween orange to the garden and your fall flower arrangements.
Plant them with black pansies for a true Halloween color display!
Marigolds are also a traditional flower in Day of the Dead celebrations, used to decorate graves and honor deceased loved ones.
It is believed that the sun-like color and strong fragrance of the marigold helps guide the souls back to their living relatives.
Sparkly Mix Marigolds
You can find a sparkly mix available from Eden Brothers that features orange, red and yellow flowers with wavy marigold petals for a spectacular show of long blooms.
10. Shamplant (Mimosa pudica)
This creeping plant of the legume family, also known as the sensitive plant, bears delicate pink pom-pom-like one-inch blooms, and is known for its bizarre defense mechanism of quickly shrinking its leaves when touched. Is.
On the left is the Shamplant whose leaves are open, on the right the leaves are closing.
The foliage also closes during periods of darkness, opening again when exposed to light.
Because of its unique response to touch, it has been used to study plant habit.
Shamplant aka Sensitive Plant
Although this tropical weed can be grown outdoors as an annual in USDA hardiness zones 2 through 8, be warned that it can spread aggressively, so you may want to consider planting it in containers.
It is easy to grow indoors in a location that has access to light and warmth throughout the year.
Seeds for growing this interactive plant at home are available from True Leaf Market.
11. Venus flytrap (Diona muscipula)
Like something out of Little Shop of Horrors, this carnivorous plant lures unsuspecting insects with sweet nectar, closing in a split second to form a cage around its prey with its interlocking teeth.
The prey is then disintegrated by digestive enzymes as it struggles to escape.
Thankfully these plants are small. As far as we know, none have developed a taste for humans!
Venus Flytrap Grow Kit
You can order Venus flytrap kits from True Leaf Market.
Each kit comes with a mini greenhouse, growing medules, high-germination seeds, and step-by-step instructions on how to grow these wily plants.
Read more about growing Venus flytrap plants here.
12. White Baneberry/Doll’s Eyes (Actaea pachypoda)
It is a popular garden plant native to North America, with clusters of white berries with dark spots that resemble pupils that look like a doll’s eye.
And beware: all parts of this plant are highly toxic to humans as well as many animals!
This perennial can be easily grown in the home garden. Sow seeds in late fall in moist, well-draining soil in a partial shade location.
The seeds are available for purchase on Amazon.
You can read more about growing baneberry bushes here.
13. Wolfsbane (Aconitum napellus)
So named because it has a history of use to kill wolves and other carnivores, this attractive flower is incredibly poisonous.
It may look innocent enough with its beautiful lobed purple flowers, but it contains deadly poison.
It also has a dark and tumultuous history of use, from ancient Rome, where it was used to eliminate enemies, to Nazi Germany, where scientists used chemicals from the plant to make poison pills. .
In fact, it is so dangerous that it is recommended to wear gloves when handling the flowers. If you grow this plant, take great care to keep it away from children and pets.
a boo-tiful display
This list only scratches the surface of all the weird and bizarre plants out there.
Hopefully this roundup has inspired you to get creative and add some life to your Halloween decorations this year!
What plants do you love to grow for Halloween? Tell us about your favorites in the comments below. And feel free to share pictures of your scary plants!
And if you’re looking for more inspiration, check out these articles for more Halloween decorating ideas:
© Ask the Experts, LLC. All rights reserved. See our TOS for more details. Product photos via Burpee, Eden Brothers, Roundstone Native Seed, Seedville, ToysNOW and True Leaf Market. Uncredited photos: Shutterstock.