Tropical flowers are hugely popular, but going out and purchasing one at random is usually not a good idea. If you want to create an eye-catching scene outside of your home, think of tropical plants, red flowers. They’re bold, attractive, and you can get a huge range of sizes and types to make them pop. Just remember that picking out tropical plants, red flowers that will thrive depends on a few factors. For example, the one you pick has to be suitable for the climate and soil type in your area.
However, this is an essential piece even if you plan on keeping your tropical plants, red flowers indoors. This is why we created a big list to ensure there is something for everyone. So, we invite you to take a look at these pretty tropical plants, red flowers below and decide which is going to work best for your space.
1. Acalypha Hispida
Originating in Malesia, this tropical plant, red flower is commonly known as the chenille plant. It’s a flowering shrub that falls into the Euphorbiaceae plant family. Other common names for this plant include the red hot cattail and the Philippine Medusa. Both names reference this shrub’s flowers that appear to be red and fuzzy. The smaller blooms have a shape that is very close to a chili pepper, and the longer blossoms look like red snakes or tails. They make a very popular indoor hanging plant. To keep this tropical plant, red flower happy, plant it in zones 10 and 11 in a space that gets partial shade to full sun each day. It will bloom all year-round in tropical climates, and the darker foliage sets off the red and pink flowers to perfection.
2. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera generally needs to be introduced since it’s so popular. But, if we were pressed to describe it scientifically, it’s a herbaceous, tropical perennial. This is a widely loved member of the Asphodelaceae genus, and it was first grown through the Mediterranean region. For centuries, medicinal aloe has been popular due to the healing properties it exhibits, and the sap is sold commercially today around the world. In fact, the sap also gets extracted to use as a cosmetic product like creams and lotions to help treat skin problems. You can extract the sap on your own and apply it to burns.
Aloe is a very drought-resistant tropical plant, red flowers that grows very quickly under full sun and it requires very little maintenance to thrive. It’s a stemless stoloniferous plant variety that uses stolons or runners to reproduce, and it’s usually found growing at ground level. The succulent leaves on this plant are a bright green color and lance-shaped. They tend to form clusters that are very thick as they grow, and they can get between one and two feet tall and 6 to 12 inches wide. When it matures, the aloe plant produces small yellow and red flowers on three feet stalks during the summer months.
This tropical plant, red flowers, is part of the Amaryllidaceae family, and it is originally from South and Central America. They grow from bulbs, and they will get roughly a foot or two high with a spread of up to a foot at full maturity. You can keep them as houseplants and allow them to be outside when the weather warms. Amaryllis bulbs available today are hybrids that were developed from the Hippeastrum species. This plant will sprout on a hollow, thick stem, and you’ll find six to eight flowers clustered right on top of the leafless stem. As your flowers reach full bloom, you can find thin, large leaves growing around the base of the plant. Usually, the flowers appear with prominent spotting and banding, and they come in pink, red, and white colors.
4. Asclepias Curassavica
Also called blood flower, this tropical plant, red flowers is native to South America, and it falls into the Apocynaceae family. You may hear it referred to as Mexican butterfly weed, swallow-wort, scarlet milkweed, and several other names that vary by region. This is a perennial evergreen plant that can easily reach up to three feet high at full maturity, and they germinate quickly while making the ideal plant for walkways and gardens. Also, the vibrant reddish-orange or yellow blooms attract bees, hummingbirds, and butterflies. The flowers grow in small clusters that are in full bloom between June and October, but these plants are very poisonous to livestock.
5. Bougainvillea Glabra
This is a very vigorous, climbing subtropical woody plant that is part of the very diverse Nyctaginaceae family. These vines originally come from South America, and they grow abundantly in very dry and sunny locations. Bougainvillea are available in a large range of colors, and they have soft, paper-like petals with a tiny white center when they bloom. If you choose to get the tree form for this tropical plant, red flowers, it sports a very dense crown and needs other plants to help support it. It grows excellently in fertile, moist soil, but it’s also known to resist drought, just like other vines. You can grow them in your garden or use them as an ornamental plant on an external wall to increase your yard’s visual appeal.
6. Brugmansia X Candida
Better known as Angel’s trumpet, this tropical plant, red flowers, is originally from Ecuador. In colder planting zones, the Brugmansia plant can be mulched and potted to survive a dormant winter period. You’ll get pretty bell-shaped flowers that droop elegantly from the stems, and they cover the flower when it’s in full bloom. They give you a very sweet scent that perfumes the air until late summer. You can choose from a range of colors with this plant, including yellow, white, orange, peach, red, and pink. Most of the blossoms are singles, but you can find cultivars that offer double blooms. THey get between five and six feet high at full maturity, and they have a shorter blooming period of four to six weeks. Most people consider them to be small trees or shrubs due to the size.
7. Caladium Bicolor
This plant is a member of the Arum family, and it has common names like the heart of Jesus. Caladiums, elephant ears, and angel wings. This plant is originally from the northern portions of South America and from Central America, and they grow from a bulb and usually get one to two feet high and wide at maturity.
To get the best growth possible with this tropical plant, red flowers, you want to give them enriched, acidic soil. Also, they have medium watering needs and prefer increments of shade. They will rarely flower, but if they do, you’ll see red-tinted hues on white. This flower is usually bought for the foliage though as it has colorful and vibrant leaves with very prominent veins. You have a range of color options, including red, white, green, pink, and splashes or blotches of color. This is a very decorative plant that works well to create a pretty bed or border.
8. Calliandra Haematocephala
This broadleaf evergreen tropical plant, red flowers is native to Bolivia. It’s a small tree or shrub that is part of the Fabaceae family. In tropical areas, it’s common to grow these plants up to 15 feet tall. It’s better known as the powder puff tree, and it produces bright red blooms in a spherical shape with scarlet stamens. This is a seasonal plant that requires more attention and care to thrive. The ornamental cultivars should be in containers under full sun conditions, and they get up to six feet high and two or three feet wide. THe leaves sprout as a pretty pink color and will eventually turn green as the plant ages. Also, the foliage is pinnately compound, and it gives way to leaflets that get divided into smaller leaflets. The flowers come in pink, red, and white.
9. Canna ‘Striata’
Canna is another pretty tropical plant, red flowers that belongs to the Cannaceae family. It is grown from bulbs, and you have to dig them out during the winter months and store them inside. These plants usually get between four and six feet tall, and they get two to four feet wide. You should plant them in an area that gets direct sunlight, but they’re a fairly low-maintenance addition that comes with spade-shaped variegated leaves in different hues. The flower stems will create a striking contrast with purple shades, and they produce bright reddish-orange flowers during July, August, and September.
10. Clivia Miniata
This plant is native to South Africa, and it’s very commonly found growing in woodlands. It’s a clump-forming specimen that is part of the Amaryllidaceae family, and it produces strap-shaped, dark green foliage with large flower heads in the early spring months. The flowers are usually red, yellow, or orange, and they have a very faint scent that stays in the air for a long time. They grow well in partial shade, and they need more water during the summer months. The plant tops out at a few feet tall, so it’s a great option to plant indoors as a houseplant.
11. Cordyline Fruticosa
This is an exotic tropical plant, red flowers that comes from Easatern Australia, Eastern Asia, and Hawaii. It’s a broadleaf evergreen that comes from the Asparagaceae family, and you may hear it referred to as the Ti Plant or cabbage tree. The spiky cultivars are grown as small trees or shrubs, and they can get between 9 and 15 feet high with a 3 to 8 foot spread.
The newer cultivars are attractive as they offer palm-like features in a stunning red shade, and you can use them as indoor flowering trees or houseplants. They require some care and nurturing to be happy, and they grow from rhizomes that make them a food source in Hawaii. The leaves are sword-like in shape, and they can give off a very beachy vibe. When the leaves start to develop, they have a pink hue that will turn red and dark green as the plant matures. The flowers have a sweet scent, and they come in lavender or white with red berries.
12. Cuphea David Verity
This is an evergreen Florida perennial that is a herbaceous broadleaf. You can easily grow them anywhere around the house as they don’t need a huge amount of care to be happy. You can plant them in driveway borders, in the garden, or even put them in a window pot or hanging basket without an issue. The orangish-red blooms are very popular with butterflies and hummingbirds, and the seeds will germinate very quickly. This plant will flower throughout the summer months, and the blooms have a very eye-catching tubular stalk with yellow tips.
13. Euphorbia Cotinifolia
This is another tropical plant, red flowers with many names attached to it, and you may hear it referred to as the Caribbean copper plant, smoketree spurge, or the tropical smoke bush. It first came into existence in Mexico, and then it spread to South America while falling into the Euphorbiaceae family. It’s technically a broadleaf evergreen, and it requires full sun exposure to thrive. You get a wider growth habit, and it can top out at six feet high when you grow it as a shrub. However, you can also train it to grow as a tree, and it can get up to 30 feet high. We recommend not coming into direct contact with this plant as it produces a milky sap that can irritate the skin or cause a rash. It scores high with visual appeal because all of the wispy leaves take on a red or purple hue. The flowering cycle doesn’t kick off until later in the summer, and it produces blooms well into the fall months.
Euphorbia Cotinifolia by Forest and Kim Star / CC BY 2.0
14. Ficus Elastica
This is the scientific name for the rubber bush, and you may hear it referred to as the rubber fig or Indian rubber tree. It is part of the Moraceae genus, and it comes from Southeastern Asia. In the natural habitat, this tropical plant, red flowers can get up to 100 feet high with a similar spread. THe leaves are a thick and glossy dark green hue, but the root systems are aerial. However, you can find ornamental cultivars that grow between 1 and 10 feet high, and they need minimal care to do well while thriving in low light conditions. You can keep them virtually anywhere you like inside of your home, even in shaded spots. The flowers it produces are attractive, and they come in a range of colors from purple and reddish-black to burgundy and variegated yellow.
Also known as blanket flowers, Gaillardia are a very popular flower type to grow in different regions in South and North America. The plant falls into the Asteraceae genus, just like sunflowers. The pretty flowers will come into full bloom between June and September, and they’re very easy to propagate from seeds. The flowers can be varying shades of orange, yellow, or red, and they have a band at the base of the petlas that is usually orange or maroon. They can get between two and three feet high, and they can spread up to two feet. These flowers demand full sun to grow, and they like dry soil. Once they establish themselves, the plants are resistant to drought and can sustain in arid conditions. They won’t do well in clay soil.
16. Heliconia Rostrata
Native to South and Central America, this tropical plant, red flower, is one of almost 200 species of flowering plants that fall into the Heliconiaceae family. This plant is a fantastic choice for anyone who has tropical gardens due to the large banana-shaped leaves, impressive size, and eye-catching flowers that give way to fruit. You can get them to top out at six feet tall, and the predominantly red flowers are shaped like lobster claws and hold nectar for hummingbirds. It thrives in zones 10 to 11 when you plant it in partial shade to full sun. It flowers in spring and summer, and the flowers are red-marked with green and yellow hues at the very tips.
17. Hibiscus Rosa-Sinensis
As the name suggests, this tropical plant, red flowers belongs to the Hibsceae tribe, and it’s part of the Malvaceae family. The common names for this plant include China rose, Hawaiian hibiscus, shoeblack plant, and rosemallow. Although this plant is very popular in the tropics, the native range is very small as it only comes from the volcanic island nation of Vanuatu. It has papery, exotic-looking, trumpet-shaped flowers it fiery tropical hues with prominent yellow stamens and red centers.
To keep this plant happy, grow it in zones 9 to 12, and make sure it gets indirect but bright sunlight each day. The flowers will stay on the plant year-round in warm climates or in late summer to early fall in cooler areas. They bloom in shades of white, orange, apricot, red, yellow, or pink.
18. Ipomoea Batatas
Commonly called the sweet potato plant, this pick is a member of the Convolvulaceae family. Sweet potato plants emerge from tubers, and they’re native to Mexico. This is a pretty vine-like plant that gets 6 to 12 inches high and spreads between 8 and 10 feet. The vines tend to produce nodes that root, and you’ll get the common orange fleshy sweet potato that you see used for food. Commercial varieties come with green leaves, and they occasionally produce light purple or pink flowers in a trumpet shape. Ornamental varieties are much more colorful, and they have heart-shaped foliage in tones of red, purple, and green. They bloom and form tubers that are edible, but they’re not nearly as sweet.
19. Manihot Esculenta Variegata
You can trace this tropical plant, red flowers back to Brazil, and it’s part of the Euphorbiaceae genus. It’s more commonly called bitter cassava or tapioca, and it grows under partial shade to full sun conditions. This plant also develops tuberous roots like sweet potatoes that you eat. The sweet variety is cultivated to be a vegetable, and the bitter is to produce starch. However, the tubers have a poisonous hydrocyanic acid, and you have to remove it before you eat it. The plants tend to proliferate in humid heat, and they can get up to 10 feet high. It has pretty variegated leaves in shades of whtie or yellow with green centers. They also sport red stems.
Manihot Esculenta Variegata by John Winder / CC BY 2.0
20. Medinilla Magnifica
You may hear this tropical plant, red flowers referred to as Rose Grape or Showy Medinilla. It comes from the Philippines, and it’s a broadleaf evergreen that is part of the Melastomataceae family. This pretty plant prefers to be in shady conditions, and it grows on tree trunks or on the ground. It’s a shrub that will get up to four feet high and three feet wide, and the flowers are very bold and eye-catching in shades of brilliant coral red. The ornamental cultivars do well as greenhouse plants when you put them in containers, and the green leaves are very prominent with the striking veins and the oblong shape. The blooms will dangle on 18-inch panicles to make them very striking.
All of the plants you know as orchids come from the Orchidaceae family, and this is a very widespread and diverse family that has roughly 28,000 officially accepted species of orchids that come from all over the world. Some come from tropical regions, and others grow in much cooler climates or more temperate zones. Roughly 70% of all orchid species are epiphytes, and this means that they form aerial roots to help them cling to trees instead of forming roots that anchor them into the ground. Also, the appearance of their blooms are varied, depending on the species.
To keep most orchids happy, you should grow them in zones 6 to 11 in bright but indirect sunlight. The flowers will go in virtually any shade of red, pink, blue, green, purple, orange, yellow, and white. They will flower in summer, spring, winter, or fall, depending on which species you have.
22. Pentas Lanceolata
The Pentas flower belongs to the Rubiaceae family, and it has a very broad native range from Yemen to East Africa. This species is very commonly called the star flower or the Egyptian star cluster as it has a star-shaped, five-petaled flower cluster. They make up the shrubby plant’s globe-shaped flower clusters. They’re a great choice if you’re trying to attract butterflies to the yard, and you can grow them as an annual in cooler climates. To keep them happy, plant them in full sun in zones 10 and 11. They bloom in the summer in shades of red, lilac, white, or pink.
23. Protea Cynaroides
Commonly referred to as King Protea, this is the most prominent head of all species in the Protea genus. It’s the national flower and native to South Africa. The flower heads can be four to six inches across, and they have a bowl-shaped appearance with bracts that are brightly colored and surround centralized pom-pom blossoms. They’re very popular to include in cutting gardens, floral arrangements, and floral bouquets. It grows best in zones 9 to 12 when you plant it in full sun. They’ll flower all year-round or in the warmer months in cooler zones, and they produce flowers in shades on whtie, green, red, purple, yellow, and orange.
24. Salvia Splendens
This is another herbaceous perennial that originates in Brazil, and it’s part of the Lamiaceae family. Many people choose to grow it as an annual plant due to the colorful and prolific flowering cycle it has that starts in June and goes until the first hard frost. This plant draws in butterflies and birds, and you can grow them indoors or outdoors in containers or in the ground.
Also called scarlet sage, Salvia Splendens have reddish-hued blooms with an average height of three to four feet. They form clumps that spread to roughly the same measurements, and they produce bright red flowers on long stalks with straight stems and dark green foliage. You can get them in a range of colors today, including blue, lavender, pink, orange, or bi-color.
25. Scadoxus Multiflorus
The final tropical plant, red flowers on the list is commonly called the Blood Lily. It’s a bulbous plant that is native to the Arabian Peninsula, Seychelles, and sub-Saharan Africa. You can find it in Mexico and in the Chagos Archipelago too. This is a very showy plant that is very toxic, and it is commonly used for fishing and arrow poisons. The flowering cycle starts in June each year and runs to July, and it’ll produce bright red flowers. You’ll want to put it in a space that gets partial shade to full sun, and the temperature shouldn’t dip below 41°F. It won’t tolerate frost, so make sure it’s always warm enough for it to grow.
These 25 tropical plants, red flowers are an excellent way to spruce up your garden or landscape with their brilliant scarlet blooms. Most of them are very easy going, and this makes them a nice choice for gardeners of all skill levels.