When it comes to horticulture, I’m a disaster. Every vegetable, herb, and succulent that I’ve ever owned has met an untimely death – not from neglect, but from caring too much. At least, that’s what I tell myself when I cradle another crumpled, brittle plant and mourn my lack of a green thumb.
When I attempt to cultivate plants, I’m like a helicopter mom, hovering nearby with my watering can at the ready whenever my babies look a little wilt-y. I had to learn (yes, the hard way) that overwatering is one of the most frequent causes of plant death since too much water and not enough drainage causes the roots to rot.
Fortunately, for those of us cursed with a black thumb, there is a broad category of plants that are so hardy and need so little care that they’re practically indestructible. Not only are they hard to kill, but they’re also beautiful and really enhance an indoor living space. Below, you’ll find a list of our favorite plants along with simple care guidelines.
Air plants are amazing for so many reasons. They are ridiculously inexpensive, which means you can buy a whole crop of them and use them in different decorative ways. They don’t need to be potted, and caring for them is as simple as it gets. In order to keep your air plants healthy, place them in water for two to three hours once every ten days.
The fact that cacti are on the list should come as little surprise considering their ubiquity in our region. The cactus is an incredibly hardy plant that is almost impossible to kill. In order to care for one, water it once a week, ensuring that the soil is soaked completely and the water runs out of the drainage holes at the bottom of the pot. Cacti also do well with a balanced fertilizer applied once during growing season, from spring to fall. If possible, use purified or distilled water rather than tap water, which contains minerals that can build up and cause harm to the plant. Experts recommend that you re-pot your cacti once a year in order to ensure longevity.
We’re of the belief that aloe vera plants should be in every home. Not only are they useful for relieving irritating conditions like sunburn and cold sores, but they also purify the air indoors. Aloe is very tough, but in order to set yourself up for success, you must pot them in containers with large drainage holes. Root rot is the definitive killer as water that hasn’t been properly drained sits at the bottom of the container, stagnating. Also, don’t overdo it when it comes to watering; once every one to two weeks will suffice. Furthermore, aloe does perfectly well indoors with a little indirect sunlight.
Cast Iron Plant
The glossy, handsome leaves of the cast iron plant are a welcome sight in any home, and this plant is one tough customer. It can tolerate extreme conditions, does not need much water, and doesn’t require sunlight. The cast iron plant is a slow grower but can reach up two feet in height. In order to make sure that yours has the best chance at life, plant it with a good, organic fertilizer mixture.
While devil’s ivy might be an unsavory name, this plant actually displays some pretty angelic qualities. First, its vines are beautiful and can grow up to 40 feet, making it a great tool for decorating an empty space – it looks especially good when hung up high or placed on a tall shelf. Devil’s ivy loves indirect sunlight and moderate watering, especially if you let the water drain out thoroughly. Wait to water the ivy until the first one to two inches of soil are dry for best results.