Imagine living in a single large room. The room has NO color, besides neutral shades of brown, and contains very little furniture or much of any decoration whatsoever…
Every once in a while, (maybe daily if you’re one of the lucky ones…) you are allowed to emerge from the dull room and actually venture out into a more colorful and stimulating world. This is the highlight of your life.
Now, imagine that this is how YOUR bearded dragon feels in their sad, boring enclosure.
Pretty sad, right?
What’s even worse than “sad”? A bearded dragon who hates their enclosure will SURELY experience a poor quality of life.
And unfortunately for owners and beardies alike, this can even lead to health problems.
So, please don’t be that owner that sticks your beardie in an ugly habitat!
The GOOD news about all of this?
There are TONS of inexpensive plant options (both real and fake) that will not only add personality to your dragon’s home, but make them happy to live there as well!
So, simply keep reading to discover the best plants for bearded dragons that will have your bearded dragon falling in love with their home and feeling happier in no time!
Safe Plants for Bearded Dragons to Eat That Also Look Great in Their Cage
These plants will not only add some much-needed pizazz to your bearded dragon’s tank… but will also be safe to consume!
This means should he or she get a case of the munchies or find themselves feeling curious, you won’t have to worry about them eating anything toxic.
However, just make sure you watch your beardie’s stool as some of these plants can up their water intake and cause their stool to be runny. In these instances, simply remove the plant and try a new one.
Tillandsia Ionantha are the PERFECT low maintenance type of plant to include because they stay relatively small, growing just 2 – 4 inches.
Additionally, they also require very little water, just douse them every 2 weeks with a spray bottle.
Also, these plants are very easy to adhere to rocks, your dragon’s background, and virtually anything else.
These plants here also turn a pink-red and even have purple blooms when they mature which adds a really pretty touch to your dragon’s habitat.
Homegrown Herbs (oregano, cilantro, parsley, rosemary, etc.)
Herbs are GREAT options for bearded dragon tanks because bearded dragons typically enjoy munching on them and they’re also easy to grow.
And perhaps it goes without saying, but herbs are non toxic so you won’t need to worry about your bearded dragon munching on something they shouldn’t.
However, it is important to note that many of the herbs will not do well in such high temperatures and as such, may need to be switched out occasionally.
However, if you can spare 1 minute every day or other day, switching out the herbs will delight your bearded dragon!
You can keep your herb plants in a pot and switch them out every day or two to give your beardie some variety. One of the easiest ways to do this is by growing your own mini herb garden.
With an herb garden, you and your bearded dragon can both enjoy the benefits of homegrown herbs every single day!
Another great option is the Aloe Vera plant, which looks GREAT in your beardie’s cage and is pretty similar to the Tillandsia Ionantha in terms of upkeep and maintenance.
Aloe Vera like is a cult favorite plant because it’s pretty easy to grow and keep alive.
And if you’re wondering,
“Can bearded dragons eat aloe vera?”
Rest assured, it’s totally NOT toxic or dangerous to them at all! But, you may find it gives them diarrhea… so try to keep them from eating a lot of it or you might need to remove it from their tank.
Callisia Repens (AKA Turtle Vine, Wandering Jew, etc.)
The Callisia Repens is another low maintenance option that is extremely easy to grow and will create a fun new texture for your dragon to enjoy.
The small heart-shaped leaves will also take on a slight bright purple hue when placed under bright sunlight, or in this case, your dragon’s basking light.
Carex buchananii (Red Rooster Ornamental Grass)
A standout amongst bearded dragons, Carex Buchananii is one of the BEST plants you can put in their enclosure as it closely mimics the grasses found in their native habitat.
A beautiful, rusty red color, this grass is both visually appealing to owners and stimulating to beardies who love to explore the texture.
However, Carex Buchananii does require you to trim it regularly as it grows quite large and is difficult to find outside of seed packets, meaning you will have to plant it and wait.
But for those committed to providing their bearded dragons with an extremely realistic enclosure they’ll love to call home, look no further.
✅ Buyer’s Tip: Want to provide your beardie the most natural habitat possible but dislike the idea of having to maintain a plant like Carex Buchananii? Why not opt for this incredibly realistic lookalike plant instead?
Succulents Safe for Bearded Dragon Habitats
Succulents are a great option for your dragon’s cage as they will add a lot of style and are easy to care for.
Just make sure you only buy nontoxic succulents as there are many that are NOT safe for dragon consumption.
And as with any succulent, make sure you monitor how much your bearded dragon is eating as too much can lead to diarrhea.
Also, if you plan on planting your succulent, check out this awesome post about how to create soil substrate!
Bearded Dragon Succulent Choice #1: Jade Plant
Jade plants will not only look nice and green but will also do well in a bearded dragon’s tank as they can tolerate really dry conditions.
However, I recommend planting them on the opposite end as the UVB light since such strong light could definitely kill the plant.
In order to help this plant stay alive, I recommend planting it in soil however so it doesn’t die.
Bearded Dragon Succulent Choice #2: Echeveria
By far one of the most popular succulent plants, echeveria always looks great and poses virtually no threat in your dragon’s tank.
These succulents will thrive with the bright light in your beardie’s home, but will likely not be too fond of the immense hear, so just keep them on the cool side to be extra careful.
Best Fake Plants for a Bearded Dragon’s Habitat
In case you want to skip the risk of diarrhea and opt for a fake plant, here are some safe (yet still visually appealing) alternatives for you and your dragon!
Custom Reptile Habitats Fake Bearded Dragon Plants
Some of my all-time favorite fake plants for bearded dragons include those made by Custom Reptile Habitats.
I find their plant selection to be extremely naturalistic and well made. They also tend to feature plants varieties other reptile brands don’t, which makes their selection much larger.
The quality is unbeatable, which makes sense once you learn that their plants are used in a wide variety of industries (amusement parks, zoos, etc.). The pricing is also very budget friendly.
If you’re looking for a variety of sizes and plant types that are well made and beautiful, look no further.
Here are some of my personal favorites they offer:
Natural Touch Fan Aloe Succulent Plant – This one is a real beauty and helps create a dreamy desert vibe
Spiky Succulent Plant – I spent forever trying to find something similar and couldn’t! A really unique option.
Mixed Onion Grass Bush – A real show stopper in larger habitats, my senior beardie LOVES this bush!
Exo Terra Terrarium Plants
Another option for fake bearded dragon plants are the terrarium plants made by Exo Terra.
These plants are decently lifelike looking and will add instant style to any dragon’s tank.
They also have a decent variety to choose from, including everything from a fern, to several types of cacti, to an orchid, and much more!
Plus, these fake plants come in a variety of sizes as well, allowing you to pick the size that will best fit your dragon’s setup.
🤓 Expert Tip: Although fake plants tend to be pretty harmless, they do still pose health threats if ingested. In fact, they can cause anything from diarrhea to impaction, so make sure your bearded dragon isn’t eating them!
Fluker’s Repta Vines-Pothos for Reptiles and Amphibians
If you’ve been looking for a great way to dress up boring glass terrarium walls, look no further than the vines by Fluker’s.
Complete with suction cups and all, this vine will easily adhere to any glass terrarium, while creating a really cool look.
Zoo Med Reptile Plants
Zoo Med is another brand that sells a variety of faux reptile plants.
Their plants tend to run on the cheaper side, so keep in mind you get what you pay for. But, if you’re looking to dress up a young bearded dragon’s temporary tank then their plants make a great option!
Bearded Dragon Plant FAQ
If you’ve ever found yourself wondering,
“Can bearded dragons eat _____?”
“Is ________ safe for a bearded dragon?”
Then rest assured… you’ve come to the right place!
Below, I’m answering your TOP bearded dragon plant questions as they pertain to both habitat and diet.
What Flowers Can Bearded Dragons Eat?
If you’re looking for a fun and colorful way to spice up your bearded dragon’s salads, why not considering offering them small quantities of fresh flowers now and then?
In fact, bearded dragons can eat flowers such as
- Rose petals
- Violets (not African)
- Day Lilies
However, a word to the wise, don’t let your bearded dragon consume any of the stems or thorns. More times than not, it’s best to simply break off petals to feed them.
Also, be sure you aren’t offering random flowers you’ve picked that could have pesticides on them.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Basil?
Considering how prevalent basil is in our lives, it’s only natural that one would wonder,
“Can bearded dragons eat basil?”
After all, it is technically a leafy green and if grown in one’s kitchen, most likely organic. Seems pretty safe, right?
The truth of the matter is that, while bearded dragons can certainly eat basil… it shouldn’t become a staple part of their diet.
So, while you may have a penchant for weekly homemade pesto, Caprese salad, craft cocktails, and other basil-friendly recipes, your bearded dragon would be better of only enjoying basil on occasion.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Mint?
Similarly to basil, mint is perfectly fine to give to your bearded dragon on occasion. But no means should it be fed daily.
However, it isn’t uncommon for bearded dragons to fall in love with mint, and become picky salad eaters without it.
If you want to feed it daily, offer VERY little and try breaking it up or rubbing it on other components of their salad to induce their appetite.
Is Cactus Safe for a Bearded Dragon’s Habitat?
This question is a little controversial, with some experts claiming that certain types of cacti do great in a bearded dragon habitat, while others argue that the risk of your dragon hurting his or herself on the spikes is far too great.
My personal opinion on the matter?
There are many other varieties of safer plant options to satisfy my bearded dragon, there’s no need to risk an injury with a cactus.
✅ Buyer’s Tip: If you have your heart dead set on using cacti for aesthetic purposes, there are plenty of beautiful, realistic looking faux cacti available that are a much safer and lower maintenance alternative.
What Is a Safe Wood for Bearded Dragon Habitats?
Because many people are looking to include wood in their dragon’s habitat, I thought it would be important to include some safe options in this post.
However, if you are bringing a piece of wood from outside into your bearded dragon’s habitat, make sure you bake it at 320 degrees for at least 30 minutes to kill any parasites and insects.
Also, make sure this piece of wood hasn’t been exposed to chemicals.
Safe varieties of wood for bearded dragon’s…
- Tulip Tree
- Crepe Myrtle
Is Pine Wood Safe for Bearded Dragons?
Unfortunately, pine is one of the handful of woods that is not safe for bearded dragons and is actually quite toxic for reptiles.
Below are some other wood types to avoid…
- Any wood with thorns
- Chemically treated wood
Wrapping Up Safe Plants for Bearded Dragons
No matter how safe you think any plant, succulent, or piece of wood may be… always watch your dragon and remain aware of how they are behaving, as well as the condition of their stool at all times.
Bearded dragons can be curious and accidentally consume the wrong things, leading to diarrhea and even more serious issues as well.
It is important that you keep an eye on them to ensure the need additions to their habitat are not doing more harm than good.