Some people have a green thumb and effortlessly grow lush, beautiful plants indoors. Some do not. If growing greenery in your home isn’t your forte, know that it is possible to have lovely plants if you pick the right variety. Indeed, there are several low-maintenance types that are hard to kill.
Cactus may be the first plant that comes to mind. It's a hardy indoor plant that doesn’t require much water and can survive in low light. But there are many more beautiful, low-maintenance species that can not only brighten your space, but also help purify the air by releasing oxygen and absorbing carbon dioxide.
Yes, you can kill any houseplant. None is indestructible. Extreme temperatures or too much or too little light or water can put any plant in peril.
But here are 10 that can thrive with minimal care.
1. Dumb Cane (Dieffenbachia)
There are many varieties of the dumb cane plant. It grows broad and tall with unique patterns on every leaf. This plant does well in warm environments, so it’s best to avoid placing it near windows. Dumb cane can also thrive in indirect sunlight and can be lightly watered — enough to keep the soil moist.
2. Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)
Native to Central and South America, the peace lily is an impressive flowering plant that prefers warm environments. It can survive in little to moderate light and can be lightly watered. But the soil should never be allowed to dry out.
3. Mother-in-Law's Tongue, or Snake Plant (Sansevieria)
These are considered tough houseplants because they can survive in dark or bright environments. Too much water or no water at all is about the only way to kill the mother-in-law’s tongue. It has stiff green leaves and is a slow grower that can reach 3 to 4 feet tall.
4. Spider Plant (Chlorophytum)
Best grown in hanging baskets, the spider plant requires bright indirect light and can grow 2 to 3 feet long. It needs to be watered well but can thrive even if it dries out between waterings. The plant produces dangling babies that can be planted to start new plants.
5. Aloe (Aloe vera)
An aloe vera can grow in the same pot for years. It needs little water and does well in a variety of light conditions — from bright indirect sunlight to partial shade. Its broad, thick leaves contain sap that is used for healing minor cuts, easing sunburn and moisturizing skin. If the leaves start to brown, cut back on the sunlight.
6. Cast Iron Plant (Aspidistra)
This plant has sword-like, beautiful broad green leaves and earned its name because it can survive in deep shade. The soil needs to be kept moist, but water can be reduced in the winter. It will occasionally flower but will not survive in direct sun or extreme cold.
7. Lucky Bamboo (Dracaena sanders)
Lucky bamboo goes by many names— ribbon plant, friendship bamboo and water bamboo are just a few. Bamboo grows vertically but can curve and twist into interesting shapes. It thrives in higher temperatures but cannot tolerate cold. Bright indirect light is best. Too much light can cause the leaves to burn.
8. Pothos (Epipremnum)
The fast-growing pothos plant can tolerate all types of lighting, even artificial office light. It’s a leafy vine that can dry out before watering becomes a problem — but if left too long, it will dry up and die. It’s also a trailing plant that can grow to 40 feet or more.
9. Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema)
This plant is known to adapt to most indoor conditions. It prefers indirect sunlight and can remain dry for days before rewatering. It is hard to kill and almost foolproof. It grows beautiful, full, bushy leaves with plain green, speckled or blotched patterns. If this plant requires anything, it’s warmth.
Jade has a luscious look with thick, glossy leaves. As such, it is one of the most popular houseplants. Jade needs plenty of light so put it in a bright spot. Watering jade is the tricky part. It will develop root rot with too much water; too little water will cause the leaves to drop. You can allow the soil to dry before watering, just not too long.
Houseplants are not just beautiful, but they are also good for your health. Studies have shown that indoor plants can reduce stress levels and boost your mood. So dive in, and freshen up the air and eliminate harmful toxins with houseplants that are extra easy to maintain.