20 Hard to Kill Houseplants for Fail-Proof Indoor Gardening
There’s no surprise that indoor plants are getting increasingly popular in interior design: due to their incredible versatility, they can fit into a variety of styles and spruce up any space in your home. In this guide, we’ve gathered the 20 best indoor plants that can thrive in any home, easy care instructions included.
1. Dracaena Marginata. Also known as a dragon tree, dracaena marginata is an exotic plant with long, red-edged leaves, the lower ones gradually falling away to expose a thin light-brown trunk.
How to Care for a Dragon Tree: To make your dragon tree thrive, plant it in a pot that is a couple of inches larger than the root ball. Use loamy, well-draining potting mix, and don’t forget about a drainage layer. Dracaena marginata loves bright indirect light but feels quite good in low light as well.
This plant doesn’t require much water, so never water it until the upper half of the soil is completely dry. The dragon tree feels best in the temperatures between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit and regular household humidity.
2. Snake Plant. The snake plant’s yellow-striped, stiff leaves grow vertically. Native to tropical Africa, this plant is relatively low-maintenance and incredibly drought-tolerant. Grown as a house plant, it can reach the height from 8 inches to 7 feet.
How to Care for a Snake Plant: For your snake plant, get a pot with a drainage hole and fill it with well-draining potting mix (ideally, the one labeled for cacti and succulents). Although snake plants prefer medium light, they’ll also survive high and low light conditions. Make sure the soil is almost dry before watering the plant. The snake plant can tolerate a wide range of temperatures, just keep it away from heating and drafts.
3. Peace Lily. This tropical plant has dark green leaves and produces snow-white flowers. It belongs to the most beautiful low-maintenance houseplants.
How to Care for Peace Lilies: Peace lilies feel happy when planted in a rich, loose potting mix. It’s best to keep your plant in a place that receives intense indirect sunlight, for instance, an east-facing window. This indoor plant is mildly toxic, so make sure you keep it out of reach of kids and pets.
Remember not to overwater the plant — this is one of the reasons a peace lily might die. Instead, check it once a week: if the top of the soil is dry, water it; if it’s damp, wait for another few days. Peace lilies love temperatures from 65 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
4. Spider Plant. These popular hanging plants feature rosettes of long, thin leaves, usually green with white stripes. In the summer, a spider plant may have small white flowers and produce baby plants.
How to Care for a Spider Plant: Caring for this plant doesn’t demand a high skill level, which makes it a perfect candidate even for those having black thumbs. Just provide your spider plant with well-drained soil and bright indirect light. Keep the soil moderately moist and don’t let it dry out too much. Spider plants prefer cooler temperatures — 55 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit is just fine.
5. ZZ Plant. Virtually indestructible and requiring very little care, the ZZ plant produces smooth and shiny, oval-shaped emerald green leaves.
How to Care for a ZZ plant: Use a well-draining potting mix. This plant will tolerate any kind of light except intense direct sunlight. Water a ZZ plant around every ten days, allowing the soil to dry out between waterings, and increase the watering at times when there is much light. Your ZZ will feel most comfortable in temps ranging between 65 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
6. Jade Plant. With its thick, woody stem and oval-shaped glossy leaves, this succulent resembles a tiny tree. It’s easy to care for, and if you manage to imitate its native growing conditions, you’ll be rewarded with starry white to pink flowers.
How to Care for a Jade Plant: Your jade plant will love well-draining soil with a neutral to slightly acidic pH level. During the warm seasons, water the plant often so that the soil is moist (but not wet!). In the winter, watering it once monthly will suffice. Average household temperatures coupled with bright indirect sunlight create the best environment for the jade plant.
7. Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree. This amazing indoor plant can reach around 10 feet tall. Fiddle leaf fig trees have huge, shiny violin-shaped leaves growing upright on their sleek trunks.
How to Care for Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree: Any quality potting mix will be good for a fiddle leaf fig. Avoid placing the plant in a sunny spot: direct sunlight can burn the leaves. Before watering, wait until the top two inches of the soil get completely dry. Fiddle leaf figs feel good in the average household temperatures, but sharp temperature fluctuations may be deadly for them.
8. Phalaenopsis Orchid. Fairly undemanding, with gorgeous arching sprays of bloom, phalaenopsis orchids belong to the best low-maintenance houseplants.
How to Care for Phalaenopsis Orchid: In their natural habitats, orchids grow on trees. They are air plants that need air to flow through their roots, so traditional potting mixes aren’t any good for them. Instead, use a coco plug or sphagnum moss for small plants and bark for larger orchids.
The basic care requirements include a moderately sunny windowsill, temperatures between about 75 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit, watering when the soil starts to dry out, and occasional fertilizing with a fertilizer designed for orchids.
9. Poinsettia. Poinsettias are popular holiday indoor plants due to their bright bracts with tiny yellow flowers in the center that appear when the days get shorter.
How to Care for Poinsettias: Poinsettias love loose, well-draining potting soil with a pH from 5.5 to 7.0. They feel great in average room temps and need six to eight hours of indirect sunlight a day, so it’s best to place the pots near a sunny window. Water poinsettias when the top layer of the soil dries out.
10. Boston Fern. This indoor plant will reward you with lush greenery even if you’re far from a green thumb owner. The full, bushy plant with plenty of feathered leaves can grow to an ample 2 or 3 feet wide.
How to Care for Boston Fern: To thrive, these plants need a rich, loamy potting mix with proper drainage. Choose a shady spot for your Boston fern, making sure that bright direct light won’t hit it. It’s imperative to keep the soil moist (but not soggy), cutting down on watering in the winter, when the fern is not actively growing. Like most house plants, Boston ferns prefer temps ranging between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
11. English Ivy. English ivy is an evergreen climbing vine, usually medium to dark green in color with light green, yellow, or white veins. Although widely known as an outdoor plant, it makes a delightful house plant as well.
How to Care for an English Ivy: Plant your indoor ivy in a well-draining container filled with rich houseplant potting mix. Remember that the most important thing in indoor ivy plant care is bright light. In addition, ivies love to be kept slightly on the dry side, so make sure the soil is completely dry before watering the plant again.
12. String of Pearls Plant. This quirky plant features small green bubbles along a slender stem. Just as other succulents, it’s drought-tolerant and requires little care.
How to Care for a String of Pearls: For your string of pearls plant, any regular succulent mix is good, but it’ll feel especially happy in sandy soil. This plant loves bright light, so consider placing it on a sunny windowsill, making sure there’s enough room for your string of pearls to sprawl. Keep the soil lightly moist during the spring and summer, then reduce water in the colder months. Average room temperatures and low humidity make up excellent conditions for the plant.
13. Jade Pothos. Jade pothos a vine with dark green, vibrant leaves. As a low-maintenance, quick-growing plant, jade pothos is often recommended to first-time plant parents.
How to Care for Jade Pothos: Jade pothos prefers a slightly acidic soil, between 6.1 and 6.8 on the pH scale. Avoid placing your pothos in direct sunlight — these plants love bright indirect light. Let the top inch of soil dry out between waterings; otherwise, the plant’s roots will rot. Like other plants, pothos feels good in temps in the 65-85 degrees Fahrenheit range.
14. Rubber Plant. Also known as ficus elastica, the rubber plant is a tree-like indoor plant with oversized, rich emerald oval-shaped leaves. It can reach impressive heights within a few years, and if you prefer to keep your rubber plant smaller, just place it in a small pot.
How to Care for a Rubber Plant: Your rubber plant will love any good quality, well-draining potting mix and plenty of bright light, but not direct sunlight. Ideally, place the plant in a sunny spot shielded by a sheer curtain. It doesn’t tolerate drought, so water the plant frequently, avoiding over watering. Like with most plants, check the first few inches of soil: if they’re dry, it’s time to water your ficus.
15. Monstera Deliciosa. This iconic tropical plant is famous for its naturally glossy, large heart-shaped leaves with characteristic splits.
How to Care for Monstera Deliciosa: Your monstera will feel best when planted in a container filled with peat-based potting media. This beautiful plant requires bright, indirect light and temps in the 65 -75 degrees Fahrenheit range. Water the plant every 1-2 weeks, letting the soil dry out between each watering. Keep in mind that these evergreens require average to high humidity levels, so give your plant a misting treat every morning if you live in a dry climate.
16. Pachira Money Tree. This original plant is easily recognizable due to its braided stems topped with palmate leaves. It’s one of the best indoor plants that don’t require much care and can feel absolutely happy in an artificially lit room.
How to Care for a Money Plant: For your money tree, get a nutrient-rich, well-draining potting mix. The plant can grow in low to bright indirect light, but don’t forget to turn it every week for even growth and leaf development. The best temperatures for the money tree range between 65-80 degrees Fahrenheit. Treat it with a good watering every 1-2 weeks, allowing the top layer to dry in between.
17. Lucky Bamboo. Although it looks like bamboo and is as fast-growing, lucky bamboo is actually a succulent.
How to Care for a Lucky Bamboo: Like most indoor plants, lucky bamboo grows best in well-drained, rich potting mix. Keep it moist, but not soaking. These unusual indoor plants prefer bright indirect light, such as what is found under a rainforest canopy. Average room temperatures and humidity are just fine for the plant. Pet owners need to be cautious, as this plant is toxic to cats and dogs.
18. Sago Palm. Thanks to its feather-like fronds, this beautiful plant has the appearance of a palm. Although slow-growing, sago palm is one of the best houseplants that require infrequent watering.
How to Care for a Sago Palm: Choose a potting mix made for cacti or palms. Sago palms prefer bright indirect light and warm, humid conditions. Water sparingly — these plants need very little water. As a rule of thumb, water your sago palm as soon as the soil feels dry to the touch.
19. African Violet. These adorable plants produce clusters of white, pink, or purple flowers over fuzzy leaves almost all year round.
How to Care for an African Violet: If you decide to adorn your space with African violets, it’s best to use an actual African violet potting mix. These delicate plants prefer intense indirect light. An east- or north-facing window can provide them with the best lighting, minimizing the risk of burning their sensitive leaves.
Water your African violets when the soil feels less moist to the touch. Don’t let the soil completely dry out but be careful not to overwater, as African violets’ stems are extremely susceptible to rot.
20. Tradescantia Nanouk. The final plant on our list of the 20 best indoor plants is the gorgeous tradescantia, known for its beautiful green and pink fuzzyish leaves.
How to Care for Tradescantia: These plants aren’t picky about soil and grow well in any all-purpose mix. They do best in intense but indirect light, an east or west-facing window being a perfect location for tradescantia. These plants love moisture, so regular watering and misting are crucial. Don’t allow the top layer of soil to dry out and snip the plant from time to time for it will never stop growing!
Which houseplant is best for oxygen?
Houseplants such as bamboo palm, English ivy, aloe vera and snake plant are best for oxygen and can help improve the air quality in your home. These plants are known to remove toxins from the air and improve air circulation. Decorating your home with these plants will not only ease breathing but also improve skin condition and sleeping.
Do indoor house plants attract bugs?
While house plants can provide a variety of benefits, like improved air quality and an aesthetically pleasing addition to any home, these same plants can also attract bugs. Whether these are ants, thrips, aphids or mealybugs, bugs in your home can be a nuisance. Luckily, there are several measures you can take to keep your house plant collection bug-free.
Start by ensuring that your plants are healthy and well-maintained: regularly check leaves for signs of stress and treat them as needed. Not only will this help keep the plant looking its best, but it will also reduce the likelihood of pests gathering around. Also, be sure to clear away any dead leaves or debris on a regular basis as this accumulates moisture and acts as an invitation for insects to move in. Furthermore, repotting each year helps to discourage organic matter buildup in the soil which provides another opportunity for pesky bugs.
Last but not least, be sure to inspect all new plants carefully before bringing them into your home. With proper care and maintenance, you can rest easy knowing that your beloved house plant collection is safe from bugs.
Different plants may call for different hydration, temperature, and humidity conditions. However, caring for these house plants isn’t difficult — most of them have similar basic needs that are quite easy to meet. We hope that our compilation of the best indoor plants has inspired you to spruce up your space with some greenery.