Jade is one of the most popular easy houseplants to give and receive. The one shown here is a jade cultivar.
Photo Credit : Brenda Darroch
Do you love the look of lush, live houseplants, and the homey feel that houseplants lend to a space? Would you like to have a few easy houseplants around your home or workspace to brighten up the environment? If you answered yes to either of these questions, these ten easy houseplants are a snap to care for! Don’t label yourself a brown thumb until you’ve tried growing one of these beautiful and forgiving plants.
10 Easy Houseplants
Air plants — also known as Tillandsias — are one of our favorite easy houseplants because they don’t require soil and potting. Tillandsia care is simple: Bright, filtered light, as well as weekly watering, will keep these plants beautiful. They absorb moisture from the environment, so the more humid the conditions, the less water they will need. If the air is dry, submerge plants in water for 2-3 hours every 2 weeks. Otherwise, a simple weekly misting should keep these plants thriving. Air plants are versatile and may be placed on a shelf, in a seashell, on a window sill, desk, or even on top of electronics such as the television or computer. They also come in a range of interesting sizes, shapes, and forms.
Said to bring good luck, the bamboo plant lives in water alone. It looks great bunched in vases or in a water garden. Bamboo thrives in bright, filtered light, but avoid direct sunlight as it will scorch the leaves. Bamboo is very sensitive to chlorine and other impurities often found in tap water, so be sure to water your plant with distilled or bottled water, or tap water that has been left out for a day to let the chlorine evaporate.
A relative of the orchid family, this plant looks like its deer horn namesake and even has a soft velvety surface that traps moisture and eliminates the need for traditional watering. It’s one of the few plants that can be mounted on a wall, as it requires only indirect light and occasional misting.
Jade, a succulent that is said to bring good luck, requires very little care. Jade plants prefer sun from a south or west window. Allow the plant to dry between waterings, but if the plant begins to shed or brown spots appear, the plant may need more water. If mealybugs appear on the plant, simply spray the plant with water and anti-bacterial soap.
These easy houseplants are a favorite in homes, offices, and waiting rooms nationwide. Spider plants look great hanging, especially when they flower and eventually sprout “babies.” The offshoots can be removed and placed in soil or water and will grow into a plant of its own. The elongated leaves of the spider plant can be either solid green or variegated green and white, and they do indeed resemble a spider. Exposure to indirect light and moist soil are the only care requirements.
The ivy plant is an old-fashioned and favorite easy houseplant. Its trails of pointed leaves look lovely cascading from a pot. The long trails may also be wound around a tiny trellis or frame. Ivy thrives in bright light, and it’s best that the soil is dry to the touch between waterings and that the plant has good drainage.
With its mixture of deep purple and green foliage, tradescantia (also known as spiderworts or wandering Jew), is a variegated, trailing plant that offsets all green houseplants nicely. This plant does best in bright sunlight with a moderate to heavy watering schedule. Keep the soil moist, not soggy, most of the time.
Arguably the most common of the American easy houseplants, this trailing plant is shiny with medium-sized heart-shaped leaves in varying shades of green. Often seen wound around stakes, trailing over frames or hung from high shelves, these plants grow fast and are very forgiving. Adequate light and moist soil are the only requirements to keep them healthy.
Thesesun-loving houseplants require bright light and loose, sandy soil. Many cactus plants will bloom once a year. Soak plant thoroughly when top ½ inch of soil is dry to the touch. Allow the cactus to drain. During dark winter months, sunlight can be supplemented with a white fluorescent bulb.
Known to bloom around Christmas time, the Christmas cactus sometimes blooms as early as October and may bloom twice in one year. This jointed, semi-prickly cactus plant has sporadic spikes and tiny fuchsia or white flowers when in bloom. These plants require nothing but bright light and very little watering — once a month is often enough.
What are your favorite easy houseplants?
This post was first published in 2013 and has been updated.