May 30th, 2017|Tags: |0 Comments


By Suah Cheong, American Forests

There are a plethora of advantages to keeping plants in your home or office. However, if you’re anything like me, you struggle endlessly with trying to keep them alive. I might get into a steady routine of tending to my houseplants every day, but the one or two waterings I miss because life happens to get in the way always seem to damage them beyond any hope of revival.

Luckily for those of us who were not blessed with green thumbs, there are several low-maintenance, near-impossible-to-kill plant species out there with amazing health benefits!

Spider plant

The spider plant is an incredibly adaptable species that can grow in a wide array of conditions. Spider plants tolerate neglect, which makes them an excellent starter plant for the beginning indoor gardener. They will thrive so long as you provide them with well-drained soil and bright, indirect light. You should only water your spider plant occasionally, letting the soil dry out between waterings.

Cactus

Cacti are famously hard to kill. Still, there are a few important care tips to consider. First, these desert plants favor high light conditions. Ideally, most indoor cacti should get anywhere from 4 to 8 hours of sunlight. Second, it is crucial not to overwater cacti — in fact, this is the most common mistake cacti owners make. Depending on the specific plant, it’s recommended that cacti only be watered around once or twice a month. Like the spider plant, the soil supporting your cactus needs to dry out completely between waterings to ensure root health.

Jade

These succulents thrive in moderate light conditions, which makes them perfect additions to desks or counter spaces. Jade plants also like to dry out between waterings, but you shouldn’t let the soil dry completely. Don’t water your jade plant on a schedule, but rather just when the top of the soil is dry to the touch.

Snake plant

The snake plant, often called the “mother-in-law’s tongue,” can be neglected for weeks at a time, yet still look fresh! These plants can withstand drought and low light, and have few insect problems. Expose your snake plant to indirect sunlight and water it only moderately. It’s preferable to let snake plants dry out a little between waterings, but they aren’t quite as dependent on dry soil as plants like cacti.

Aloe

Aloe is yet another plant species that can withstand neglect. Aloe plants will thrive in indirect sunlight, although it prefers sunnier environments. Aloe should be watered thoroughly, but only sparingly, when the top 2 inches of soil are dry to the touch. In addition to the air purifying benefits that most indoor plants have, the gel inside aloe leaves acts as a great remedy for cuts and burns! Gently break of one of the leaves and squeeze the gel onto the affected area.

Rubber Plant

The gorgeous, waxy leaves of rubber plants make them great additions to the home. Rubber plants prefer indirect light that isn’t too hot. They also need the right balance of water. In the hot months, they should be watered pretty frequently so that the soil remains moist, but be careful not to overwater. In the winter, they may only need to be watered once or twice a month.

Peace lily

Peace lilies are beautiful plants with dark green leaves and white flowers. They enjoy low to medium light, depending on your aesthetic preferences, but peace lilies with higher light exposure will produce more flowers. They shouldn’t be watered on a schedule, but rather only when their soil is dry to the touch.