The Best Houseplants for Beginners

There’s so much to look forward to when starting a garden, both indoors and outdoors. But nothing’s more rewarding than enjoying the fruits (and vegetables) of your labour. Or simply seeing your thriving house plants throughout the four seasons. Considering you’re a novice, you deserve a pat on the back.

Unfortunately, that’s not always the case for many rookies, and that’s okay. Much of gardening is learned by trial and error anyway. For your developing green thumb, what you need is an easy-to-grow and low-maintenance plant. Start indoors, and from there, you can develop your skills until you’re confident enough to grow in the yard.

Cue indoor plants — the ultimate newbie’s “starter pack” in the world of gardening. They can thrive in any part of your home, sometimes even in gloomy corners, but only when you know the right plants!

Below, take a closer look at the best houseplants for beginners. All are easy to care for without demanding too much time and attention.

The Perfect Houseplants For You

1. Pothos

Pothos houseplant

(Image Credit: Pothos)

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This ivy plant is favoured for its beginner-friendly care level. There are a plethora of pothos varieties, giving you lots of options to decorate your home.

Among them are the glossy leaves of the golden pothos, in yellow and green, which breathe new life into any home. In its natural habitat, this trailing plant just keeps growing! And as a houseplant, you can train it up from the top of a bookcase or hang it in front of a north- or east-facing window.

Care requirements include placing it in a bright spot with indirect light. A simple glass of water is enough to encourage roots and let the soil dry out between waterings. If the plant wilts or leaves yellow and drops, it may need frequent watering.

2. ZZ plant

ZZ houseplant

(Image Credit: Pexels)

When talking about popular houseplant accents, the ZZ plant maintains its crowning point. Sporting oval, deep green leaves that grow upward but aren’t more than 36 inches tall (3ft). Some people might even mistake them for being fake due to their uniform colour.

This low-maintenance foliage can tolerate some drought. In the mid-summer, it rarely blooms with small, demure white flowers, adding to the focal point. Your living space, kitchen, and home offices are great places to keep them. They can handle humidity, too, making them remarkable bathroom plants.

For care indoor maintenance, ZZ prefers moderate to bright indirect light. They can manage various light conditions, except for harsh direct sunlight. Water thoroughly and allow the soil to dry out before watering again.

3. Snake plant

Snake houseplant

(Image Credit: Pexels)

Snake plants are known for removing air toxins, but they also seem to appreciate neglect. Or more like a hands-off approach. Either way, it’s a win-win for the novice indoor green thumbs!

Even with a minimal care level, you’ll still be rewarded with sword-like, fleshy leaves. Like the ZZ, they make a charming statement plant for the living room or in an office environment.

To grow and manage, snake plants will appreciate both direct and indirect sunlight. Medium light and shady corners, even if necessary. They’re also not particular about regular watering — every one to two months will do.

4. Aloe vera

Aloe Vera houseplant

(Image Credit: Pexels)

A pop of colour paired with little to no maintenance, Aloe Vera is a practical addition to the home. This succulent plant purifies the air and has amazing healing properties.

Take the gel from its leaves, for example. It makes great use as a healing remedy for minor burns or cuts. Even better, as homemade beauty products, helping achieve long lashes and glowing skin!

Aloe is tolerant of drought, so it won’t suffer if you forget to water it. And once you do, its long, narrow, bright leaves – in a rosette arrangement – should plump up again. Place it by a window that gets bright, indirect light, and ensure its container and soil drain well.

5. Spider plant

Spider houseplant

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The spider plant and its easy going attitude make it a front-runner houseplant. It grows in baskets or atop columns, with arching leaves that are bright green with white edges. Over time, a mature plant will send out offsets, forming an impressive hanging display. For a twist, opt for the curly variety where the leaves spiral instead of arching straight.

Bright, indirect sunlight is best for them, although they grow in shady conditions, too. It’s highly adaptable, as it can grow in almost any environment when given time to “settle”.

Water thoroughly and let it dry between watering about 1” down. If brown tips start appearing, consider misting or adding a humidifier to the room.

6. Lucky bamboo

Lucky bamboo houseplant

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As its name implies, the lucky bamboo attracts luck wherever it goes. If you’ve wanted a bit more good fortune and luck, this is an excellent indoor plant choice!

This low-care perennial also enhances the chi, or energy, of its surroundings. It can thrive in awful conditions, such as little watering with bad lighting and poor air quality.

As indoor plants, lucky bamboo likes bright, indirect light. Growing them in a vase is fine as long as you add some pebbles for support. They can also be quite sensitive to chlorine often found in tap water, so go for bottled water.

7. Ponytail palm tree

Ponytail palm tree houseplant

(Image Credit: Flickr)

Giving off a dramatic, reminiscent of a desert island, your home must have at least one ponytail palm tree! Its unique cascading leaves can be leathery and grow up to around 3ft long when grown indoors. 

What’s interesting about it is it’s neither a plant nor a tree but rather a succulent from the Agave family. The ponytail palm is easy-going, very forgiving, and drought-tolerant. It’s one of those superb indoor plants if you travel a lot or worry about forgetting to water.

Give it lots of sun to soak up for a gorgeous year-round display. It can also tolerate lower light levels, particularly in the wintertime. What’s more, it can go several weeks without watering. But if you see brown and crispy leaves or the trunks begin to wrinkle, water right away.

8. Cast iron plant

Cast iron houseplant

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The cast iron plant is indestructible, and its natural air purification properties are a bonus! Part of the Lily family, it presents dark green, long, pointed, line-textured leaves.

Like the rest of the houseplants above, it requires minimal care. All it needs is a shade or indirect light and moderate watering once and twice a week. Plus, occasional fertiliser applications in warmer months.

It only produces a few leaves each year so it won’t outgrow its location. It’d look amazing in a group with other plants or alone in your living room or bedroom corner.

9. Chinese evergreen

Chinese evergreen houseplant

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Attractive foliage, low-maintenance care, air purifying properties, and easy propagation. What more could you ask for? Chinese evergreens have it all!

The leaves are large, glossy, and oval, and they can come in a variety of colours. But to stay healthy and green, Chinese evergreens need indirect light levels. Place them near a window where they can get lots of light but avoid direct sunlight to avoid wilting. If the top 2 inches of soil feels dry, it’s time to water.

10. Peace lily

Peace lily houseplant

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Finally, an indoor flowering plant for beginners! With its lush green foliage and pure white blooms, Peace lily will add a dramatic touch to your indoor space. Put them in a vase, and you’ll have an eye-catching piece on your dining table or the fireplace mantel.

Peace lilies should be placed in a location with bright, indirect light. This could be in a north-facing window or away from ultraviolet rays. They prefer evenly moist soil and can gain from fertilising during spring and summer.

Best Houseplants for Beginners: Round-up

Indoor plants are a great way to brighten up a room and add life to an otherwise dull space. Not only are they aesthetically pleasing, but they also provide renewed oxygen in the air. What’s more, they’ve been known to reduce stress, improve moods, and boost productivity.

But with all the different varieties, it can be tricky to choose the ones that are right for you. If you’re just starting out, these options above provide fantastic starting points. These houseplants for beginners require minimal care and little effort. At the same time, they provide maximum rewards and luck!