Perfect for beginners, brown thumbs, or people on the go, these easy indoor plants don't mind low light, low humidity, or irregular watering.
Nobody wants to kill their houseplants, yet sometimes our fussier friends from the plant world refuse to thrive inside and wind up worse for the wear. And sometimes, ugh, they die. It's so sad! (I am still mourning my beautiful string of pearls who had a bad experience with my skylight, may she rest in peace.)
Some plants suffer from not being in the right environment, others fail to thrive from we will call user errors. And the truth is that understanding all the nuances of what a plant needs can be challenging, unless of course you are a plant whisperer.For the rest of – whether new to plant parenthood, a busy traveler, or simply lacking a green thumb – thankfully there are some wonderful, beautiful, stalwart varieties that do not demand too much. Among them are these five Plants of Steel®, introduced as a collection by the Miami-based horticultural grower, Costa Farms. They call them some of the easiest to grow of all houseplants, ones that "don't mind low light, low humidity, or irregular watering." Knowing about my love of all things houseplants, they sent me three of them for a test drive. And while I have been kind to my new babies, I can tell that they are tough as nails.
1. Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema)
Light: Can tolerate low light, does well in bright light, will even persist in offices with fluorescent lighting.
Water: You can water it regularly, or you can water it every few weeks. How's that for agreeable?
2. Ponytail Palm (Beaucarnea recurvata)
Light: Ponytails will grow the best with bright light, but will do just fine in medium- and low-light spots.
Water: These plants store water in those groovy trunks, so they can go for long periods without water; even if they do grow better with regular watering, they do not at all require it.
3. Sago Palm (Cycas revoluta)
Light: While sago palms do best in bright light, they can handle medium light as well.
Water: These guys are drought-tolerant houseplant and don't need a lot of water, in fact, overwatering is usually what kills them.
4. Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata)
Light: Tolerates low light; grows fastest in bright conditions. Can live in just about any room.
Water: As long as they get water from time to time, it's tough to underwater these guys; the only concern is overwatering.
5. ZZ Plant (Zamioculcas zamiifolia)
Light: Can tolerate a wide range of light conditions, even thrives in office lighting.
Water: You can water ZZ every few weeks, though it grows best when watered when the top inch or two of soil feels dry.
(Note: Remember that some houseplants can be toxic to children and/or pets.)
For more on Plants of Steel and other houseplant tips, visit Costa Farms.