I love plants, but I wouldn’t say I have a great green-thumb yet. Something I am gradually learning from lots of trial and error, sadly enough for the plants that went through my beginner stage. Oops. I started with a few small succulents and they didn’t make it because I definitely did not do enough research on how much water they need/don’t need – something I learned the hard way is VERY important! I also have found some other plants that have done super well for me in our apartment with little light and little care! Win – Win! In order to not kill off more plants I decided to do some research on how to keep the little guys alive and here are some tips I’ve learned on my plant journey!
1. Succulents | Medium-maintenance
These guys like neglect..sorta. I made the mistake of over-watering my first few when I first got them and I learned at the expense of the poor guys. Round #2 is going much better after a bit more research and several trips to Earl May and Campbell’s. I’ve found about every 7-10 days these guys need a little H2O. When you’re planting your succulents I’d highly recommend going to your local nursery to get cactus\terrarium soil to plant them in as well as a pot with a drainage hole. Also, they love lots and lots of light!
take-a-ways: medium-maintenance (in my opinion- these guys are pickier about their environment!)
Soil: Good-draining soil. Cactus/terrarium mix from your local nursery!
Water: Water until a little water comes out the drainage hole (dump any leftover water) and let dry completely between waterings
Light: Bright, direct sun-light
2. Chinese Evergreen | Low-light plants
As one of the most popular houseplants, this one is awesome because it can grow anywhere you want in your house! I have mine in our corner by our table where it only gets indirect light and it’s done super well for me on the first try, unlike the poor succulents.. I water it whenever the soil feels semi-dry to the touch. Always remember to dump out the excess water from the bottom to avoid any root rot.
Soil: Regular Potting Soil
Water: Every 7-9 days when soil is relatively dry, but not totally dry. Water so that water comes out of the drainage hole
Light: Low, indirect light. Can grow in fluorescent lighting. Avoid bright-sunlight.
3) Snake plant | Medium-light plant
Here’s another super tolerable plant – of brown-thumbed people! These guys like indirect sun-light so I have them on the North side of my apartment and they get about 4-5 hours of indirect sun a day. I water this one whenever the soil feels dry to touch, making sure not to over-water to avoid nasty root rot. If you don’t have them in a pot with a drainage hole, I’d recommend getting lava rock or some sort of gravel from your local nursery and pouring about 1.5-2 inches in the bottom of the pot to help absorb excess moisture.
take-a-ways: low-maintenance (YAY!)
Soil: Terrarium/Cactus Mix Soil
Water: Every 1-2 weeks when soil is dry. Let soil completely dry in between waterings. From personal experience, better to underwater then to overwater with this one!
Light: Bright + Indirect light. Does well with a variety of light situations. Aim for medium, indirect light if possible!
4) Mini Cactus
This one is definitely the easiest houseplant I’ve owned. They LOVE being forgotten about! I bought mine from Trader Joe’s, so I didn’t have to plant it, but if you do plant a cactus, make sure to buy cactus soil mix! I am watering mine less right now because it’s winter and dormant in growing.
•take-a-ways: LOW maintenance
Soil: Cactus soil mix (a MUST! do not try to use regular soil because you need a well-draining soil!)
Water: Less in the winter, but every 1-2 weeks when completely dry to touch
Light: Bright light for at least 4 hours a day. Make sure to rotate periodically so entire plant gets direct light
*Water less in the winter months for ALL plants!
LAST TIP: If you are watering your plants with tap water let your water sit out for a few hours in a cup before watering or even overnight if possible. This allows the chlorine and fluorine in tap water to dissipate and allows water to reach room temperature, making it safer + healthier for plants.