Beginners Guide to Indoor Plants

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Have you tried keeping plants indoors, but with no success? Or do you want to green your living room but aren’t confident enough to try or just unsure how to start? Well here is a list of hardy indoor plants that are almost impossible to kill even for the most inexperienced of gardeners, also maintenance tips to ensure they always remain healthy.

While deciding which plants to use, the key factors to consider are the amount of light and watering requirements. To begin with let’s get one thing out of the way; there are no plants which will grow completely devoid of sunlight. All plants require some amount of light of varying intensities. So while selecting a plant make sure to assess the light conditions of the area you wish to place it in. the next factor to consider is the amount of watering required. The most common cause of death of indoor plants is over watering. Here is a simple tip which will help judge how much water is required – stick your finger in the soil, if it’s moist around 1 inch below the surface then there is no need for water. Also remember that it’s better to water thoroughly once than to water little bit multiple times. Keeping the above factors in mind we’ve come up with a list of 10 indoor plants for beginners.

Aglaonema:- This genus of plants has a wide variety of species. They have colourful, showy attractive foliage which makes them a favorite among indoor plants. They grow best in bright filtered light. Ensure to let the soil dry out between watering. These plants are extremely hardy and do well with regular misting of leaves.

Aglaonema - indoor plants

Snake plant:-Hardy, drought resistant and tolerant to low light. The snake plant is one of the top plants for purifying indoor air and is virtually impossible to kill.

Water well during the growing summer months for best growth, it requires barely no watering during the dormant winter watering. It can grow in a wide range of lighting conditions from full sunlight to almost no natural light (in this case it is advisable to shift it to a brighter spot twice a week). It is a good plant if you are a frequent traveler.

Snake plant - Indoor plants

Zamiculcas zamifolia:-

The ZZ plant as it is commonly known is a must have if you are considering indoor plants.  The dark green glossy leaves reflect light and can brighten up any dull space. This can grow even in a low light environment and are very forgiving even if you miss a watering or two. As long as they are potted in well drained soil these plants will thrive. Let the soil dry out between watering.

These plants are extremely good air purifying plants and absorb pollutants like xylene, toluene and benzene.

One drawback of this plant is that all parts are slightly toxic so make sure not to use it in salads.

Philodendron cordatum :-

Also called the sweetheart plant because of its heart shaped leaves, this plant is extremely versatile. It can be grown in hanging baskets and allowed to trail, it can also be used as a green cascade on book shelves , allowed to climb on mossticks or any support. This plant is a fast grower and grows well in bright filtered sunlight. It would require regular pinching if a short multi branched bushy plant is desired.

Philodendron Xanadu:- Another plant from the philodendron family, the xanadu is one of the few philodendrons which grow upright. It requires bright indirect sunlight and regular watering. Fertilize once a month using a balanced fertilizer.  Its lobed leaves add a very tropical feel to the room.

Fiddle leaf fig:- Ficus lyrata or the fiddle leaf fig is the ideal plant for places with high ceilings and low floor spaces. The big leaves are the real standout feature of this plant. It requires bright indirect sunlight and needs to be watered once the soil dries out.

Make sure to keep the leaves dust free. Regular misting to increase humidity would be helpful.

Spathiphyllum:- the peace lilies are one of the few varieties of plants which will flower in low light conditions. These produce standout showy white flowers and have glossy foliage. They grow well in indirect sunlight and can also survive in fluorescent lighting. Water well but let the soil dry out between watering. The peace lily tends to droop when it requires water. This can be used as an indication for watering.

The peace lilies are good air purifying plants which is why they have become very popular indoor plants.

Monstera deliciosa:-

Also called the Swiss cheese plant, monstera is known for its large perforated leaves. This plant tends to grow very large so it’s best to use it as a statement plant with lots of space around it. It requires bright indirect sunlight but can grow in low light areas as well. Water well, letting the soil dry out between watering. Pruning of fresh growth is necessary to maintain the size of the plant. These plants love to climb so it is best to plant it with a moss stick for support. Mist leaves regularly to increase humidity around the plant.

Golden pothos:-

commonly called money plant, this plant is extremely hardy and can grow even in the absence of natural lighting. This plant is forgiving to forgetful watering and extremely hard to kill.  It grows best in soil which drains out well. It can be propagated and grown easily by simply cutting a portion of the stem and placing it in a bottle of water. The golden pothos can be grown in hanging baskets; it can also grow on any support.

Parlor palm (Chamaedorea elegans) :-this palm reaches a maximum height of 4ft and is a slow grower. It requires very little pruning and fertilizing making it an ideal plant for beginners. It grows best in bright indirect but can tolerate low light conditions.

Be careful with overwatering. Pot the plant in well draining soil and water when the soil is moist to touch. Mist leaves occasionally to keep them dust free, this also increases humidity around the plant which protects the leaf tips from browning.

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