The last six months of social isolation have really given me an opportunity to step up my house plant game! I never understood why there were so many ‘crazy plant ladies out there’ until recently. Watching a plant grow is oddly satisfying – don’t even get me started on how I’ve come to love propagating plants as well.
The first house plant I ever had was a Fiddle Leaf Fig(FLF) Tree when I lived in San Diego, CA. With warm weather and sunshine all year round, it was the ideal growing climate for a FLF. However, when we moved to Virginia my big beautiful trees didn’t survive the cold cross country trip. Since we’ve moved into our new house I’ve had to restart my collection.
I’ve pulled together a few easy – care house plants that are great for beginners regardless of where your growing zone/location is. If you don’t know what your growing zone/code is- here is a website that can help you determine what plants thrive in your environment. For reference I am in Virginia (zone 8a) and all the plants I will be sharing on this post are for indoors.
When figuring out what type of plant to purchase, I highly suggest downloading the app Planta (available for both iPhone + android). In this app you can identify what type of sunlight you are the room gets and see which plants will thrive in that location. This app has been really helpful with reminding me when to water plants & helping me determine which room is right for my plant.
All of the plant sin this blog post are fairly easy to take care of and do well in a variety of sunlight(s) so you shouldn’t have too much difficulty keeping these ones alive. Here are my baskets that make moving my plants super easy!
Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata)
One of the first plants I got when we moved into our new house was a Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata). These plants are native to tropical West Africa but are really easy to care for. There are different varieties when it comes to leave color and length. However, the all fall under the same category when it comes to care. Snake plants are ‘sun adjusting’ meaning that they can thrive in both high & low light. Additionally, they very rarely need to be watered (once every 2-8 weeks). Watering schedules for a snake plant depend on how bright & warm your house is. Water when the soil is dry in the top 1-2 inches.
Snake Plant Toxicity
Snake plants are toxic to both pets & humans if ingested. Keep this in mind when figuring out where to place your plant. I have my snake plant placed on the floor in this basket, but luckily baby girl isn’t crawling yet & Zeus (our pup) doesn’t get in to anything he isn’t supposed to. If a snake plant is ingested it could cause mild nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Arrowhead Plant (Syngonium podophyllum)
I just recently got this Arrowhead plant for my birthday in June – so I’ve only had him for about a month. He currently lives in Anniston’s bathroom on the counter. The room does not have a very large window, but it does get continuous light throughout the day.
Arrowhead plants like a lot of bright indirect sunlight – their leaves burn very easily so make sure no sun is shining on the leaves. Finding a nice humid location (like a bathroom) is ideal for growth – however, if you cannot place your plant in a bathroom, you could also mist the plant every day (or every other) for optimal growth. Take note to not put this plant near a draft, they prefer warm humid environments.
Arrowhead Plant Toxicity
The arrowhead plant can pose as a mild skin irritant to humans, but is poisonous to cats, dogs & horses. If an animal chews on a vine, expect drooling and some swelling. When ingested the plant could cause vomiting, difficulty breathing/swallowing.
Succulents & Cacti
If you are truly new to the world of plants and are not frequently home, a succulent or cacti may be a great option for you. These plants tend to be smaller and require less care because the prefer their soil to be dry. High sunlight is required for these plants so I keep them on my propagation wall in my kitchen (first photo in this blog post).
For reference I water the Blue Chalksticks once every 2 – 3 weeks and the Moon Cactus gets watered once a month.
Succulent & Cacti Toxicity
Most succulents are not toxic to humans – many of them are often used in medicine and ointments. Cacti are relatively safe as well, just be mindful of the spines. Both of these plants are best kept up high away from kiddos & animals. Always use gardening gloves when handling a Cacti – most spines are very tiny & difficult to get out of your skin.
Corn Plant (dracaena fragrans massangeana)
A friend of mine shared her Corn Plant in her instagram stories and I knew I had to have one! I love the look of having trees indoors so this was the perfect addition to our living room. The added height and texture really brightens up our space.
Corn Plants can grow anywhere from 8 feet to 30 feet. My plant (there are actually two in that one pot) has one stalk that is about 1.5 feet and the other stalk is about 3.5 feet tall. The plants are fairly short since I just got them a couple of months ago. As you can tell in the picture the leaves have a bit of damage to them – needless to say the little guy wasn’t the healthiest when I brought him home. We was severely dehydrated and the leaves were extremely droopy.
Care for this plant is minimal. A Corn Plant needs minimal light & minimal watering (every 2-3 weeks) to grow. Keep them out of direct sunlight & do not over water. The plants preference is to actually under water versus over water. I’ve read that this type of plant is fairly easy to propagate but have yet to attempt it on my own.
Corn Plant Toxicity
The Corn Plant is not toxic to humans but can be toxic to animals. Animals may experience vomiting with blood, moodiness such as depression, decreased eating habits, drooling and dilated pupils. Be mindful of where you place this plant especially if you have puppies or house bunnies that like to chew on plants.
Many of these plants can be found at your local plant nursery or Home Depot / Lowes. However, I have been really happy with my purchases from Costa Farms on Amazon. Most of the plants that they sell also come in really cute pots as well! When the plant gets delivered to you if you are not happy with how it looks you can contact customer service and request a photo, then replace the plant for you in most cases. Super easy!
I also have this beautiful Majesty Palm in our dining room but she’s a bit difficult to take care of. I’ve named her Queen Victoria because she’s so picky – definitely one that needs the ‘Royal Treatment.’ Do you name your plants?! I’ve had Victoria for a couple of months and I can’t seem to get in a good routine for her. If you have any tips about how to care for a majesty palm I would love to hear them!
Do you have a favorite house plant that is easy to take care of? I also really love my Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree (we got a new one when we moved to Virginia) but the new guy hasn’t been thriving as well as my last two. Having house plants has been a challenge in our new environment, hopefully you have better luck than I do.
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