7 Plants for Plant Newbies
It’s very discouraging when you invest a little (or sometimes a lot) in purchasing a new plant and within a few months are scraping its crunchy dead leaves into the garbage. If you are new to the plant game it’s important to start with some hardy and not-so-needy plants to boost your confidence in your plant skills. Here is a list of suggested green guys and gals to start with:
1. Peace Lily (aka Spathiphyllum)
The Peace Lily is a wonderful plant to start with. It’s a lush, bold deep green and elegant plant that will literally tell you when it needs to be watered. When it’s too dry the leaves will all get a bit droopy and limp as a very clear sign that it needs a drink. Within an hour or two of desperately watering it, thinking you’ve killed the easiest plant there is, its leaves will start to stiffen out again and it return back to its normal self. They do well in direct sun or a bright indirect light and can grow to fairly impressive sizes if you keep them around long enough.
2. Pothos Plant
This is by far, in my opinion, the easiest plant you can get. The Pothos can tolerate anything – forgetting to water it, not getting enough light, accidentally ripping off half of its stem..you name it. Similar to the Peace Lily it will also tell you when it needs to be watered by getting limp leaves. They won’t be as drastic as the Peace Lily but you will notice them look a little lifeless. Give it a quick drink and you’re back in business. These are trailing plants and will basically keep growing endlessly if you allow them the space. Did I mention they look phenomenal in hanging baskets or above kitchen cabinets? They do okay in shaded corners or really any type of lighting but like most plants will always do best with a good amount of sun. You can also very easily propagate as many new ones as you’d like by trimming a 4″-6″ piece off of the stem and allowing it to root in water. These plants are simply the best.
3. Episcia Cupreata
This is another beautiful trailing plant that is bound to take over if you let it. It doesn’t grow as quickly as the Pothos but is equally just as hardy and forgiving. It’s shiny silver-green leaves are a real showstopper and a few times a year they will produce small flowers (the more sun the more flowers). They are okay being completely dried out for a short period of time which is what makes it such a great beginner plant. They prefer bright light but will still grow with indirect light however as a result will not produce flowers as often. They look great hanging down a shelf or in a hanging basket like the Pothos!
4. Monstera Deliciosa
Okay, I will warn you now – this plant will really turn into a monster! This 1970’s plant has made a comeback lately. Anyone else watching Mad Men? You see them everywhere! I’ve included them on this list because they are VERY fast growing for how little maintenance they need. If you have the space and want to live in a jungle, you need this plant. Medium to bright light, water when dry, easy. They will shoot out aerial roots all over the place that are simply part of the nature of the plant so let them be.
5. Tradescantia Fluminensis
Similar to the Pothos, here is another very easy to care for and easy to propagate trailing plant. These guys grow relatively quickly and are very forgiving when you go away for 2 weeks and aren’t able to water them. They come in quite a few different colours and varieties including a pink and green striped one which obviously everyone in the world should have! Their leaves are on the smaller side and appear quite delicate but are really stunning up close. Like most of the other plants I’ve suggested, they like to dry out between watering and do well in medium or direct light. In my opinion this plant does not get enough credit for how fabulous it is!
6. Hibiscus Plant
I’ve received many questions about how my Hibiscus lives indoors. Well, when you live somewhere with -40 winters it absolutely has to live indoors! This is another plant that I think does not get enough recognition. It is such an easygoing, easy to maintain and beautiful plant. I mean, have you seen a Hibiscus flower? Stunning! They do well with indirect light but with bright light they will produce many more flowers which, in my opinion, is one of the main reasons you should have this plant. One thing I will tell you though is that they are very thirsty plants! They don’t mind being dry for a few days and the leaves will let you know about it…however they seriously guzzle water. Not a bad thing, just be prepared.
7. Snake Plant (aka Sansevieria)
Last of all, of course, the Snake Plant. This plant is known the clean the air and actually gives off oxygen at night. These guys are about as easy and forgiving as it gets. They prefer indirect light but will tolerate very little light if they have to. They do not like to be overwatered so ensure they are very dry between waterings. If anything, too dry is better than too wet for this plant. The long, thin height of their leaves look fabulous on furniture and tucked away into corners. If your boss will let you, most definitely bring one of these to work with you!
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