8 Hard to Kill Houseplants

By Marissa Ross, Intent

Ah, yes, spring. Makes me want to go outside and frolic in some flowers and enjoy some sunshine. You know, all the things our daydreams are made of! But more so than not, I am stuck inside my apartment staring at a computer screen or cleaning up after my kid (‘kid’, ‘dog’- same thing in this house!).

I am probably the least domestic person anyone I know knows. Famous for only eating frozen veggie corn dogs or blocks of cheese when left to my own devices, it’s also not uncommon to hear about me shrinking my boyfriend’s shirts or killing off my roommate’s hydrangeas. But this Spring, I decided it was high time I get some foliage to brighten up my space! So, what does the girl that can barely remember to turn in her Netflix plant in her house?

Here are some low maintenance and highly rewarding houseplants to consider:

Mother-In-Law Plant: “The plant that never leaves!” is known for its incredible life spans and its sharp, pointed tongue-like leaves. The Mother-In-Law plant is tolerant of very low light environments and actually will rot if you love it too much — only one to two waterings a week!

Christmas Cactus: This plant just loves to give, apparently more the less you give! The Christmas Cactus does well in just about any light environment although bright, indirect sunlight will give you the brightest flower blooms. Also like the Mother-In-Law, too much watering is the one way to kill this guy. You should only water it when the top third of the soil is dry.

Pothos: I like these guys because they’re great for hanging! Pathos need low to medium light and only need to be watered once a week. The only set back to this plant is having to groom them. Just give them a trim when you’re cleaning up your bangs and you’ll be fine.

Dragon Tree: For those of us Black Thumbs with a predilection to the Palm Springs motif, the Dragon Tree resembles a Palm Tree but can be trained to grow into braids or knots. They do well in bright sun and best if they actually dry out completely between waterings. And if you really are a Black Thumb and even let this resilient plant wilt, just some water will make it perk right back up again.

Bromeliads: The Bromeliad really gives you a chance to play hard to get with your household plants. You can ignore it for days on end and it will still give you glorious blooms that last up to three months. The Bromeliad is a tropical plant; it does best in warm rooms with plenty of indirect sunlight and is one of the most tolerant of infrequent waterings.

ZZ Plant: The name Zamioculcas zamiifolia is about as complicated as the plant gets. This plant likes low light (it actually does better in shade) and needs little water because it stores water for months in its tuber leaves and thick roots.

African Violet: This is one of the more high maintenance plants listed which I blame on its lovely flowers. These pretty purple bushels of blooms require bright indirect light as well as more moderating waterings- soil needs to be kept moist while the roots should be dried between waterings. Another quirk of the African Violet: getting water on the leaves will cause white spots.

Peace Lily: The Peace Lily, like the African Violet, requires more watering than the first half of the list. The soil must be kept moist but the roots should be dry before watering. It does well in low lights and does not do well with curious cats or children who eat things they shouldn’t (Peace Lillies are poisonous if ingested!).

Orchids: I’m just going off my own houseplant know-how I have with this one, which is very limited (to Orchids). Every Orchid I’ve ever had, I’ve placed in medium in direct light without realizing I’m putting it in medium in direct light, water it every couple days (or when I’m writing an article on house plants) and it just keeps blooming! And if I can make a houseplant last and thrive, so can you. Promise.

All of these plants all have the option to be soil planted so ask your local garden guy or Google which soil will fit your plant’s best needs.


William C
William C2 months ago

Thank you.

New G.
W. C1 years ago


Lynn Rubal
Lynn Rubal3 years ago

Thanks. Great info.

Nils Anders Lunde
PlsNoMessage s3 years ago


Fi T.
Past Member 3 years ago

Our first steps to treasure the green

Peggy D.
Peggy D3 years ago

I've got three of these listed plants. I like the pothos a lot. I have a golden one that is really pretty. If you put them outside for the summer they will really take off.

Anteater Ants
Anteater Ants3 years ago

thank you

Jeannine A. Johnson
Jeannine Johnson3 years ago

ty, mine is limited to cactuses & succulents & Jade plants with a Jade plant hold a leaf gently remove it put it on the window sill for a few days till the end of the leaf starts to dry not the tip of the leaf the other end and get a small jar I use tiny baby food Jars clean it good then put too tablespoons of good potting soil in it ad the leaf in the middle don't put it to deep then put a tablespoon of water in the jar put plastic wrap over the top of the jar put a elastic band around the top of the jar tightly and put it on a window sill wait 2 or 3 months every day tap the plastic on top of the jar gently and the moisture drips like rain you now have a tiny green house in a few months you will see a tiny plant with tiny leaves then you can put it in a little bigger pot ! soon it will grow into a big Jade plant ! : )

Nimue P.

Thank you :)

Elizabeth M.
Elizabeth M3 years ago

Great information - will be trying the ZZ plant for sure. The only plants that I have been able to keep growing are the pothos, thanks Samantha.
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