Coming up with the ten “best” indoor plants is an impossible task since hundreds of species thrive indoors. That said, this article will showcase a good variety of plants to get you started or to add to an already prosperous collection. Caring for indoor plants is a great addition to your routine, especially if you feel a little stir-crazy from being inside or don’t have any outdoor space.
The ZZ plant is not only trendy but extremely hardy and difficult to kill! It tolerates a variety of light conditions and isn’t overly picky about watering. You can forget about it, or dote on it. Either way, it finds a way to flourish as long as the basics are provided. With lush, upright stems that boast tiny, elegant green leaves, the darker “raven” variety was the latest plant craze. They aren’t fast growers, so they are great choices if space is limited and look great when planted in clumps or allowed to grow to maturity.
Commonly known as the “dumb cane” plant, this easy-going, stately houseplant has attractive, broad foliage with single, green, and cream oval leaves that extend from long stems. It can get up to four feet tall at maturity but is usually sold in smaller pots. This will only last for a short time—these fast growers can reach two feet in their first year. It prefers the soil to be kept moist, but as with most houseplants, it has good drainage.
Dieffenbachia can thrive in lower light areas, making it a popular choice for those parts of the home or office that don’t get a ton of sunlight.
Different palms will require slightly different settings; however, palms, in general, are great choices depending on what you need. The Areca palm has a lovely, upright fan of tropical foliage that thrives in bright, indirect light: perfect next to a couch in a sunny room or an office that gets enough light.
Majesty palms have similar requirements but will do fine in even lower light. Their fans are wider and extend like arms at the side, rather than upright. Most palms prefer moist, well-draining soil and will appreciate added humidity over the dry, winter months. Most varieties will grow fairly big, and some time outside in the summer will promote healthy growth.
The Pothos plant is another great choice for beginners or experts since it’s one of the more forgiving but essential plants in any collection. It's not fussy and won't mind if you miss an occasional watering, actually preferring to dry out. It can thrive in low light but will do best in bright, indirect light. The heart-shaped leaves trail well and grow downward, but you can use a trellis to train it or let it run across tables and shelves.
Pothos look lovely in hanging baskets and can stay in a small pot for a while it extends its vines. You’ll notice if it's root-bound when leaves start to droop, or it’s been in the same planter for a few years.
The Rubber plant is a member of the fig family and is actually a relative of the Ficus – another trendy houseplant. Its large, bold green foliage is similar to the ZZ plant but bigger - this plant can grow into a small tree, up to ten feet, if allowed. It prefers bright, indirect light but can also tolerate low light. Just don't move them around too much.
This tropical plant prefers warm, humid, stable conditions, so keep away from drafty windows and run a humidifier in dry months. Rubber plants are great if you want to invest in something that will be around for years and grow into a space.
There are many indoor succulents that you can add to your collection if you have enough bright light or space by a sunny window. All succulents prefer to dry out, similar to the desert-like conditions that they came from. Aloe vera is an excellent houseplant that can grow quite big and will even produce adorable little “pups” that you can transplant. Jade is another elegant, mystical succulent that will slowly grow into a large, majestic dwarf-like tree. Zebra cactus have interesting patterns and add trendy character in small pots. All succulents must have well-draining soil as wet feet will be a quick death for these otherwise hardy plants.
The Snake plant or “Sansevieria” is actually a succulent, as well, but looks and acts like a beautiful, easy-going houseplant. The “snakey” upright variegated green and yellow leaves are stylish, and often featured in design magazines or used for staging homes. They prefer bright, indirect light, and similar to their succulent family, prefer to dry out before watering.
Once again, any excess water must be able to drain fully. Watch that they aren’t put in direct light as they can experience sunburn. Otherwise, they are easy to take care of, and a great investment.
8. Spider Plant
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The Spider plant is another notorious houseplant that does not need a lot of attention and is great for beginners. The simple, arched leaves will do best with moist soil but can withstand being forgotten about for a while. They also prefer bright, indirect light but will do fine in lower light conditions, as well.
Fertilizer will help in the spring, but proper conditions are sometimes all this laid-back plant needs to send out little spider “babies” from their stems that you can propagate into new plants. Also, they are safe to have around pets!
The Red Maranta Prayer plant was named 2021's "plant of the year" for its symbolic gesture of praying at night. Prayer plants are great indoor plants in general and come in a variety of colors and patterns. Their unique foliage adds character to a collection that needs something to break up too much "greenery."
Similar to other tropicals, they like moist soil with good drainage and thrive in bright, indirect light. Prune to encourage new growth and allow it to the trail like the Pothos.
The monstera plant may be one of the trendiest plants to have in your apartment, office, or home for its unique, shredded, "swiss-cheese" foliage. This tropical plant wants a warm room with moist soil, regular watering, and lots of bright, indirect light. They can get pretty big, growing around one or two feet a year, and are good candidates for propagating once they’ve developed strong nodes. Great in living rooms next to chairs and couches, or anywhere on a floor where they have room to grow, both upward and to the side.
With houseplant fever on the rise, there are many options to bring into your home. The ten listed here are fairly basic, but excellent species to either start, or expand your plant collection with. These indoor plants are easy to add to your routine and tend to be available at nurseries, or local plant swaps. With more time indoors, houseplants can be wonderful to keep busy and put your attention into something beautiful.
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