These 7 Super Low-Maintenance Indoor Plants Almost Seem to Thrive on Neglect

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These 7 Super Low-Maintenance Indoor Plants Almost Seem to Thrive on Neglect

When scrolling through social media, it soon becomes obvious how much we all love our houseplants. They add so much beauty, freshness, and life to our homes. But sometimes we can love our indoor plants a little too much, especially when we overdo it with watering. Houseplants that come from more humid places in the world also can struggle in the drier air in our homes. However, a few low-maintenance houseplants are extremely forgiving and undemanding about their growing conditions. While the following houseplants seem almost impossible to kill, do keep an eye out for common signs of distress so you can correct the problem and save your plant.

Illustration of low maintenance house plants that are hard to kill

Jiaqi Zhou

Basic Houseplant Care Tips

Many common houseplants are from subtropical or tropical areas of the world, so they tend to prefer the same conditions that we’re most comfortable in. That’s one reason why these plants became so popular to grow in our homes starting in Victorian times, which was when indoor heating was perfected. Indoor plants prefer the same range of temperatures we do, in the 60s and 70s, but they don’t handle the excessive dryness as well. Sometimes people end up overwatering their houseplants to compensate for the dry air, but soil moisture doesn’t help the air moisture situation.

If the air is too dry, many indoor plants develop brown leaf tips. To keep your houseplants happy, keep them away from any source of forced air or heat like vents, heaters, or radiators. In the winter, when the air is driest, lightly mist houseplants daily. Open a nearby window when the weather is above 50˚F to let in more humid air.

Also, keep light in mind. Most houseplants prefer bright, indirect light rather than direct sunlight which can burn the leaves. If your hand casts a bit of a shadow indoors, that’s considered bright indirect light. Make sure to choose a place to put your plants carefully.

Why Are Your Indoor Plant’s Leaves Turning Yellow? The Fix May Be Simple

To avoid overwatering, stick your finger about an inch into the soil to feel if it’s moist. You can also use a moisture meter. If the soil has moisture, wait a few days before watering. As a rule of thumb, only water a plant when the soil is dry to the touch.

Signs Your Plant Isn’t Healthy

Plants can’t speak to you but they can certainly show you when they aren’t happy. If you know what your plant looks like when it’s healthy and happy, it will be very obvious when it looks pale, limp, or dull. Telltale signs to look for include:

  • Yellow leaves often indicate overwatering or poor drainage that’s keeping roots too wet. It may also mean your plant is getting too much sunlight or needs more nutrients.
  • Wilting and brown spots can be a sign of overwatering and possibly root rot or other diseases.
  • Stunted growth means the plant is rootbound and too large for its pot

How to Repot a Rootbound Houseplant

Once in a while, your houseplants need repotting as they outgrow their containers. To check, slide them out of the pot and look at the roots. If there’s a high root to soil ratio, and you see circling roots, your plant will benefit from repotting.

Choose a new pot that is a little bit wider and deeper than the previous pot. Make sure the new container has a drainage hole at the bottom (it’s more challenging to avoid root rot without a way for extra water to drain out) or you may need to drill one. You can slightly cover the hole with a piece of broken pot or a pebble, as long as water can still get around that.

Fill the new pot about 1/3 of the way full with fresh potting mix. Keep the soil surface at the same level it was in the old pot, adding extra mix around the plant’s roots until the new pot is filled in. A common mistake is to fill the pot all the way to the top, which makes watering more challenging. Instead, leave at least a half inch at the top unfilled. This space creates a reservoir to hold water until it can soak in. Water the plant well to settle it into the new pot. Wait a couple of weeks, then use a diluted fertilizer to add some nutrients.

Most Popular Flowers & Plants in the USA

RegionPopular FlowersPopular Plants
Northeast (e.g., New York, Massachusetts)Rose, Purple Lilac, Mountain LaurelSugar Maple, American Elm, White Pine
Southeast (e.g., Florida, Georgia)Orange Blossom, Cherokee Rose, Southern MagnoliaLive Oak, Spanish Moss, Saw Palmetto
Midwest (e.g., Ohio, Illinois)Carnation, Violet, Purple ConeflowerBur Oak, Prairie Grasses, Wild Bergamot
Southwest (e.g., Texas, Arizona)Bluebonnet, Saguaro Cactus Flower, Indian PaintbrushJoshua Tree, Agave, Mesquite
West (e.g., California, Washington)California Poppy, Coast Rhododendron, BitterrootGiant Sequoia, Redwood, Manzanita
Rocky Mountain (e.g., Colorado, Montana)Rocky Mountain Columbine, Bitterroot, Indian PaintbrushBlue Spruce, Aspen, Sagebrush
Great Plains (e.g., Kansas, Nebraska)Sunflower, Goldenrod, Purple ConeflowerCottonwood, Bluestem Grasses, Buffalo Grass
Pacific Northwest (e.g., Oregon, Alaska)Oregon Grape, Forget-me-not, Pacific RhododendronDouglas Fir, Western Hemlock, Ferns

This table includes the most popular flowers and plants in the USA by region, which considers a range of botanical species, including native and widely cultivated varieties.

Most Popular Flowers & Plants in Australia

RegionPopular FlowersPopular Plants
New South WalesWaratah, Bottlebrush, Flannel FlowerEucalyptus, Acacia, Banksia
VictoriaCommon Heath, Waxflower, Pink HeathMountain Ash, Silver Wattle, Victorian Blue Gum
QueenslandCooktown Orchid, Golden Penda, Umbrella Tree FlowerMoreton Bay Fig, Macadamia Nut, Queensland Bottle Tree
South AustraliaSturt's Desert Pea, Kangaroo Paw, Eucalyptus BlossomAdelaide Blue Gum, South Australian Blue Gum, Saltbush
Western AustraliaRed and Green Kangaroo Paw, Mangles Kangaroo Paw, Swan River DaisyJarrah, Marri, Karri
TasmaniaTasmanian Blue Gum, Leatherwood Flower, Tasmanian WaratahHuon Pine, Tasmanian Oak, Myrtle Beech
Northern TerritorySturt's Desert Rose, Frangipani, Desert RoseBoab, Gidgee, Spinifex
Australian Capital TerritoryRoyal Bluebell, Australian Daisy, CorreaSnow Gum, River Red Gum, Black Mountain

This table offers a basic overview of popular flowers and plants in each Australian region, focusing on a combination of state flowers, native species, and other characteristic plants. It's important to note that specific species' popularity and prevalence can vary. This table is a simplified representation. Consulting local botanical gardens or regional horticultural societies in Australia would be ideal for more detailed and accurate information.

Charlotte Gammon

By Charlotte Gammon

Meet Charlotte Gammon, our expert and author. She's our true treasure, as she has got 20+ years of experience in gardening, winery and house design. In early 2000s, she worked for today.com magazine and was in charge of the gaardening section. Later on, Charlotte opened her own designer agency and worked as a designer and decorator. We are happy to have Charlotte with us, as she is our good friend. We value her experience and we're sure you will love the articles she created for our blog.