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8 Beautiful & Easy-To-Grow Houseplants

8 Beautiful & Easy-To-Grow Houseplants

At Gardenista, we appreciate  hearing about new plants we should try next. From the members of the Remodelista Architect/Designer Directory, here are the experts’ favorite, easiest-to-grow houseplants:

Above: Allison Koll at Gunn Landscape Architecture recommends oxalis triangularis, or purple shamrock. She loves its beautiful triangular leaves and deep purple shade, and because it stays alive while her other plants have not. She suggests keeping oxalis in indirect sunlight—its leaves open and close to the sun—and watering every few days or if the soil is dry. It becomes dormant during winter, she says, “So just when it seems like you’ve killed it, it comes back to life.” Photograph via Easy to Grow Bulbs.

A packet of 25 bulbs of Oxalis Triangularis is $9.95 from Easy to Grow Bulbs.

Fiddle Leaf Fig, Easiest Favorite Houseplants, Gardenista

Above: Neither Leslie Bennett nor Stefani Bittner of Star Apple Edible Gardens is an admirer of houseplants in general, but both have grown fond of the Fiddle Leaf Fig for its big, beautiful leaves and retro-chic look. They’ve also found that it’s hard to kill. “If things go wrong,” says Bennett, “I just cut mine way back and it comes back beautifully.”  Photograph via The Marion House Book.

Want your own? See The Fig and I: Tips for Buying and Caring for a Fiddle Leaf Fig.

Mother in Law's Tongue, Easiest Favorite Houseplants, Gardenista

Above: Beth Mullins of Growsgreen Landscape Design is fond of sansevieria, or mother-in-law’s tongue, especially the cylindrica variety. Says Mullins, “They are retro and easy and can handle dark corners with very little water.” Photograph via The Simple Green Frugal Co-op.

For more information and sources, see A Houseplant You Can’t Kill: Mother-in-Law’s Tongue.

Kalachoe Chinese Bells, Easiest Favorite Houseplants, Gardenista

Above: Gunn Landscape Architecture senior designer Aaron McIntire recommends kalanchoe, or magic bells plant, for its striking shapes, color, and texture. He notes that it blooms from late fall into winter, and as a member of the succulent family, it’s resilient and easy to care for. McIntire says, “I like this plant because after it blooms, you only have to cut it back and the process of growth starts again.” Photograph via Das Pflanzen Forum.

Wall-Mounted Staghorn Fern, Easiest Favorite Houseplants, Gardenista

Above: Gunn Landscapes designer Cat Rha recommends Platycerium bifurcatum, or staghorn fern, “as a great sculptural centerpiece for mounting onto a wall. I love the idea of using plants as a piece of living art.” She notes that they can be finicky to care for, since they prefer tropical environments—high humidity and indirect sunlight. She suggests soaking them in water once a week and misting in between waterings. Photograph via Terrain.

Have you ever considered hanging a staghorn fern in your shower? See Steal This Look: Hooked on Houseplants.

Castiron Plant, Easiest Favorite Houseplants, Gardenista

Above: Pedersen Associates in San Francisco recommends Aspidistra elatior, or the castiron plant, for enduring hardiness. Photograph via Jacksonville.

A Starry Night Castiron Plant is $7.99 from Hirt’s.

ZZ Plant, Easiest Favorite Houseplants, Gardenista

Above: Gunn Landscapes horticulturist Lauren Pucciarelli recommends the ZZ plant, Zamioculcas zamiifolia, for its beautiful foliage that is highly resistant to pests and can tolerate low light. However, she warns that “all parts of the plant are toxic so be careful around children and pets.” Photograph by Helen McCauslin.

A Rare ZZ Plant in a 6-inch pot is $14.99 from Hirt’s.

Chinese Evergreen, Easiest Favorite Houseplants, Gardenista

Above: Along with the ZZ plant, Joel Lichtenwalter of Grow Outdoor Design recommends aglaonema  ”Silver Queen,” or Chinese evergreen. He says that despite minimal watering, “These are the two plants that have survived at least a decade in medium/low light exposure in my condo in West Hollywood.” Just as easy, he says, is “a centerpiece of three different tillandsias arranged on a metal base on the dining room table.” Photograph via Eco|Stems.

A Silver Queen Chinese Evergreen Plant in a 4-inch pot is $7.99 from Amazon.

Read more: Conscious Consumer, Crafts & Design, Crafts & Hobbies, Eco-friendly tips, Gardenista, Green, Green Home Decor, Materials & Architecture, , , , , , ,

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Gardenista is a one-stop sourcebook for cultivated living, a guide to outdoor design and gardening. Helmed by former New York Times columnist Michelle Slatalla, Gardenista features inspiration, garden visits, and advice for all things outdoor living, from patios and peonies, to tables and terraces. Gardens matter, and Gardenista celebrates tomatoes on the fire escape as much as rolling acres of green.


+ add your own
4:39AM PDT on Mar 23, 2015

Just lovely! I'd like to know which are toxic, but they are just lovely.

1:35AM PDT on Jul 8, 2014

Thank you.

11:20AM PDT on Jul 6, 2014

I know some of these plants and have recently seen a purple shamrock for the first time. It is such an interesting and beautiful plant. Thanks for the article.

4:29AM PDT on Jul 5, 2014


8:04PM PDT on Jul 4, 2014

Thanks :)

5:19AM PDT on Jul 4, 2014

Beautify our home and our environment

8:44PM PDT on Jul 3, 2014

I have managed to kill all but one of these plants, and I have never grown that one, the ZZ plant. I have pothos and peace lilies that are at least ten years old. No luck with any other house plant.

12:36PM PST on Feb 22, 2014

Nice plants! ty!

4:59PM PST on Feb 2, 2014

If I remember correctly, fiddle-leaf figs can't take a lot of air conditioning. They're tropicals, after all. They will drop leaves indoors. A friend of mine had a beautiful large one and kept it on a covered patio in South Florida.

7:41PM PST on Jan 30, 2014

Beautiful plants which would brighten any home. But, as several posters have mentioned, be very careful the ones you choose are not toxic to your pets.

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people are talking

sounds delicious, thank you.

--->tion! Geesh...really? They cut off the last 4 letters of a word? LMBO! I find that ex…

Barbara: Where are you getting you odds from. What is the source?

Interesting - thank you!


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