17 best low-maintenance indoor plants
Worried that you don’t have a green thumb to take care of indoor plants? Whatever your skill-level, read on and discover the best low-maintenance and low-light indoor plants that can survive the cold season, and how to take care of them.
Here are 17 houseplants for beginners
We’ve compiled a list of 17 indoor plants known for their adaptability and minimal maintenance, even during winter. They’re particularly resilient in dry environments with electric heating.
1. Sansevieria (also called “snake plant or mother-in-law’s tongue”)
This beautiful, low-maintenance plant can survive in low-light settings (receiving very little/indirect light) and should only be watered once a month. Make sure it gets enough to drink at watering times, and don’t let it sit in the excess water that will accumulate in the planter saucer. Careful: this plant can be toxic if ingested by animals.
2. Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera is a fan favourite, and there are many varieties to choose from. This plant is easy to maintain, elegant, and enjoys light, but it prefers to be watered only when its soil is bone-dry.
3. Ficus Elastica (commonly known as “rubber plant”)
This low-maintenance indoor plant can grow to 8 feet tall, so it needs room. It only needs watering when the topsoil is completely dry. The Ficus needs medium light but can also tolerate a little more intense light. But be warned, this plant will die in a room without any windows.
4. Areca Palm
This vibrant, low-maintenance plant brings an exotic and tropical charm to any room. It resembles a palm tree and can grow up to around 7 feet tall in a large pot (but will stay small in a small pot). The Areca likes indirect light and only requires watering every two weeks or so.
5. Dracaena (or “dragon tree”)
Here is another tropical plant that grows under almost all conditions and requires very little water. This green tree tolerates indirect light, but loves direct sunlight. Low maintenance, this plant can happily live with other exotic plants to create a lush indoor garden.
6. Aspidistra (or “cast-iron plant”)
This low-maintenance plant is one of the most adaptable. In winter, it can be watered only twice a month and requires little light. However, it needs more frequent watering in spring and throughout the growing season.
This is one of the greasy, glossy plants. It is known for its rounded, textured leaves. This plant comes in a variety of colours and textures, making it highly appreciated for its decorative appearance, as well as for its low maintenance. It tolerates low light and very infrequent watering.
8. Fiddle Leaf Fig
Prized for the beauty of its large shiny leaves, this plant needs medium light. It likes a drier soil, so it doesn’t need much water. Yellowing of the leaves is usually a sign of sun damage, indicating that it needs to be placed in a shadier area. This is another great low-maintenance houseplant in winter.
This beautiful plant from Asia is part of the succulent family; also known as a jade plant. It thrives in direct sunlight and requires little water and attention. Decorative and sturdy, it grows slowly but can live for decades. This easy plant can fit in nicely with any indoor plant styling.
10. Zamioculcas Zamiifolia (or ZZ plant)
If there’s a plant that requires next to nothing to stay alive throughout the entire year, it’s the ZZ plant. It retains its spectacular shine even in shade and with very little water for months! Ideal for giving the room a tropical look, it’s truly one of best low-maintenance houseplants.
With its heart-shaped leaves, this easy-care indoor plant adds elegance to any interior. It requires little water in winter and only needs watering when its soil is dry in summer. Plus, it thrives in low light.
Ideal plants for all those who aren’t blessed with a green thumb. They are decorative and require no special care, except for a small spray directly on the soil from time to time. This makes it one of the easiest indoor plants.
It only produces two or three leaves a year, but they are well worth the wait. A lover of moisture, it’s the perfect plant for a bathroom with a small window. It loves the company of other plants. In summer, it should be watered twice a week, but in winter, in a warm, dry environment, you should spray the back of its leaves daily and place the planter on a clay saucer soaked in a little water.
14. Climbing ivy
This decorative plant survives very well in a room with little lighting and even little heating. In winter, ivy hardly needs any water. A frequent and regular spraying is sufficient. From March to September, however, it needs to be given a little regular liquid fertilizer every 15 days to optimize its growth. It will grow easier with a trellis or stick to climb. It’s super pretty on the handle of a basket.
Here’s another one of those wonderful succulents that can easily go without water. In winter, it can be lightly watered once a month when the soil is very dry. It doesn’t like direct sunlight and it can live comfortably in an apartment.
A lush and low-maintenance indoor plant that’s practically unstoppable. Schefflera will thrive with little watering.
17. Scindapsus (or The Silver Satin)
This plant has been known for decades for its capacity to adapt to almost any environment. It grows best when watered occasionally, and only when the soil is dry. Ideal for gracing shelves or window ledges.
Some quick and easy tips
Winter can be a challenging season for your indoor green plants. To give them their best chance, avoid placing them near baseboard heaters or radiators; and for your health as well as theirs, don’t let the temperature rise too high, especially at night. Plants are sensitive to cold drafts, so be careful when opening windows and doors. For watering, it’s best to use room temperature water so you don’t shock the roots, and let the water sit for a few hours to eliminate the chlorine. Never add fertilizer to foliage plants during the winter because they’re in their dormant stage. Be careful not to allow water to accumulate in the saucer placed under the planter—you may cause root rot.
Did you know that having many green plants could purify the air in your home? For example, sansevieria (snake plant), ferns, chlorophytum (spider plant), dwarf palm trees, weeping fig tree, climbing ivy, dragon tree, schefflera and many others. As you can see, many of these plants are on our list of best low-maintenance indoor plants.