Houseplants, or plants that are grown indoors, are more than just decorative pieces and are known to have a positive psychological effect on humans. Most people love to beautify their living spaces with houseplants but don’t generally have the time and attention they constantly require. Most plants demand child-like care for a healthy growth. Watering, pruning, re-potting, and general maintenance of houseplants is a time-consuming activity, which discourages some people from keeping indoor plants.
But, not all houseplants require constant care and some only need watering just once a month. Here are beautiful houseplants that are low-maintenance.
1. Lucky Bamboo (Dracaena sanderiana)
Native to Cameroon in tropical west Africa, this is a popular houseplant. Despite its misleading name and appearance, it is not related to bamboo and grows on the ground in rainforests as an upright shrub. The plant can survive in many indoor conditions, but indirect lighting is best as direct sunlight can cause the leaves to turn yellow and burn. Since this plant is often grown in water, there is no question of watering it. But, lucky bamboo is known to grow better in soil rather than in water.
2. Begonia (Begonia)
With over 1700 different plant species, begonias are among the most commonly grown indoors plants for its ornamental value. Since most species are native to tropical regions, they require warm temperatures. The two types of indoor begonias (foliage types and flower types) don’t require frequent watering. These plants have leaves that come in all designs and colors and its flowers sport white, pink, scarlet, or yellow colors depending on the hybrids and cultivars.
3. Zebra Cactus (Zebra haworthia)
Zebra cactus also known as zebra plants, are succulents with a shape similar to that of aloe vera plants. These plants are endemic to Southern Africa. Although the actual number and identification of the species are not well established, horticulturists believe that this family contains about 150 accepted species. Most species of haworthia favor extremely well-drained soil as they generally tend to grow in poor sands, in rocky areas. The plant needs watering just about once a month and grows well in hot and humid conditions.
4. Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
The spider plant, native to South Africa, is also known as airplane plant, St. Bernard’s lily, spider ivy, and ribbon plant. It is a flowering perennial herb that is commonly grown as a houseplant. Spider plants are easy to grow and can thrive in a wide range of conditions. More interestingly, these plants have also been shown to reduce indoor air pollution and do not require regular watering as its tuberous roots store water and nutrients for a long time.
5. Ponytail Palm (Beaucarnea recurvata)
Commonly called an elephant’s foot or ponytail palm, this species of plant is native to eastern Mexico and has gained worldwide popularity as an ornamental plant. It requires a proper soil mix to drain when watered and must not be over-watered, as this causes pests and insects to attack the plant. It is very slow-growing and can tolerate drought quite well. As it cannot withstand cold temperatures, it is best grown as an indoor plant in colder regions.
6. Rubber Plant (Ficus elastica)
The rubber plant is grown around the world as an ornamental plant that has a high tolerance for drought, but prefers humidity and thrives in wet, tropical conditions. It does not require much watering and is a very easy-to-maintain plant. You can keep it in a medium-sized pot for many years as its rate of growth is very slow. The leaves are quite thick and have a shiny texture. Some types of rubber plant may also sport a red or purple foliage and makes an excellent indoor plant.
7. Air Plant (Tillandsia)
The air plant is native to the forests, mountains, and deserts of Central and South America. It also grows in some parts of the southern US and the West Indies. Air plant is a common name for plants in this genus, which contains about 650 species. Since most species absorb moisture and nutrients through the leaves from rain, dew, dust, decaying leaves and insect matter, it does not require watering. Just spraying a mist of water using a spray bottle will do.
8. Donkey’s Tail Plant (Sedum morganianum)
The donkey’s tail plant is native to southern Mexico and Honduras and is a succulent, perennial plant with fleshy blue-green leaves and terminal pink to red flowers in summer. It is often cultivated as a houseplant in a container hung from the roof or wall, where the trailing stems hang vertically. It grows well outdoors as well as indoors, in very good light or full sun but not extreme heat. Excess water can damage the plant and it is susceptible to over-watering, especially during winter.
9. Wax Plant (Hoya carnosa)
Originally from Eastern Asia and Australia, the wax plant is a common houseplant grown for its beautiful waxy leaves and sweet-scented flowers. Recent studies have shown this plant to be an excellent remover of pollutants in the indoor environment. It’s best to place this plant in an open potting medium that allows aeration for its roots. Typical soil mixes include large-grade drainage material such as perlite or pumice. Its attractive star-shaped flowers may be light pink or even dark pink. Occasional watering and ample light for this plant will do the trick.