A home feels even more homey with a little greenery. But only certain plants will thrive in the low light conditions and the lack of airflow typical of indoor environments. That's why many houseplants have their origins in the dimly lit areas of forest floors. That's where conditions are most similar to those found indoors and those are the plants that make some of the best houseplants. Here are a handful of super-tough plants that you can use to add beauty and a natural feeling to your indoor spaces:
ZZ Plant, Aroid Palm
An amazingly tough, yet attractive houseplant! The ZZ Plant (Zamioculcas zamifolia) not only handles low light conditions well, but it can also take some neglect when it comes to watering. This plant is native to Southern Africa where it is adapted to occasional drought conditions. ZZ Plant is a slow grower, perfect for small spaces such as an office or table top, where you don't want a plant that will quickly outgrow the space.
Also referred to as mother-in-law's tongue, the Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata) sounds scary, but it's very gentle on indoor gardeners with brown thumbs. It actually does best with infrequent watering, so it's a good choice for people who go out of town a lot. Snake plant prefers some direct sun, but it will tolerate relatively low light conditions if that's all you have. Its statuesque appearance is a good fit for entryways and other places where it is sure to get noticed.
Pothos (Epipremnum aureum) is the ultimate indoor vine. In a big pot it can grow to 20 feet or more, but you can always trim it back if it gets out of hand (or just keep it in a small pot if you don't want it to sprawl). Besides the undeniable good looks of those glossy, heart-shaped leaves, Pothos is also renowned for thriving on neglect. It tolerates low light, infrequent watering and is virtually never troubled by pest or disease—all the makings of an indestructible houseplant!
Here is another good-looking specimen for your indestructible houseplant collection. Jade plants (Crassula ovata), which are a type of succulent, do require a bit of direct sun each day, but that's about it. Watering should be kept to a minimum—you're more likely to kill a jade plant by overwatering, than by under-watering. They can grow into a small tree if the pot is big enough, but they are also happy to remain in a small container for years on end.
Relatively few houseplants produce flowers and most of those that do fall in the temperamental category. Peace lily (Spathiphyllum spp.) is one of the only houseplants that is noted for its large, elegant flower display, as well as its toughness. It prefers indirect light, and will send up its gorgeous white flowers even when it is nowhere near a window. It prefers not to get too dry, but it usually survives this type of neglect and will regain strength once you start watering it again.
So brighten up your home and bring in more oxygen with one of these super easy houseplants! Do you already own one? Tell us in the comments!