June 13, 2024

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Interior spice

The Best Easy Indoor Plants to Brighten Your Home

Not everyone is naturally green-fingered, but there are plenty of hardy houseplants that can come to the rescue should you wish to inject some greenery into your home.

Do not be fooled by their delicate appearance, these plants are more durable than you think; some can even withstand serious neglect.

Terry Smithson, biodiversity manager and ecologist at landscaping company BioScapes, believes easy indoor plants can not only brighten your home but also brighten your mind and mood.

He told Newsweek: “Being surrounded by nature increases levels of concentration, reduces stress and improves sleep and happiness.

“These plants also offer other benefits from cleaning air to soothing skin.”

Read on for some great suggestions for bringing plants into the home as a way of freshening up your indoor space.

Spider Plant

Spider Plant
Introducing plants into a home has a way of freshening up your interior
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According to Baby Bio, the spider plant is a low-maintenance way to brighten your interiors because “it doesn’t need much watering or sunlight to thrive, making it perfect for pretty much anywhere in the home and great for beginners or busy plant parents.”

A spokesperson for the plant food company added: “Spider plants are also non-toxic to pets, so you don’t need to worry about placing it out of reach of curious cats or dogs.

“Its luscious, long variegated leaves cascade over the side of its pot and look beautiful when hung from ceilings or when placed in elevated pots.

“This not only creates an attractive addition to your interiors but also prevents leaves from being damaged or from getting so heavy that they topple the pot.”

As spider plants can survive in lower light levels, the bathroom or hallway is a great place to put one.

Food will help the plant develop stronger roots and encourage even more growth, as well as plenty of plant “pups.”

Pelargoniums

Pelargoniums
Introducing greenery such as pelargoniums to your home can help boost your WFH productivity
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Susanne Lux, spokesperson for Pelargoniums for Europe, extols the virtues of these prize blooms. She told Newsweek: “Pelargoniums make beautiful decorative houseplants or cut flowers and are especially good where you want to achieve a romantic, bohemian or vintage look.

“They will flower profusely and continuously from spring to autumn in a wide range of colors and shapes that can bring a welcome splash of color to an otherwise dull corner of the room.

“You can also coordinate specific varieties with existing decor and accessories for a lovely spring-summer boost to your home interior.”

The plants are “non-demanding of their owners,” Lux added, “tolerating high heat and temporary drought if you happen to go away and forget to water them for a while. Like other plants, they don’t like being waterlogged, so make sure they’re in a pot which contains draining holes.”

Paddle Plant

Paddle Plant
Don’t be fooled by their delicate appearance—paddle plants are more durable than you think.
phanasitti/Getty Images

Horticulturist Zach Morgan, from Fantastic Services, says this succulent prefers bright light, “so you can just let it sit on the windowsill and soak up the rays.”

He told Newsweek: “The paddle plant also prefers to be on the drier side, so it’s absolutely fine if you only remember to water it now and then. The plant thrives best in medium levels of humidity and an average room temperature.

“Give the pot a quarter turn now and then to get a proper amount of light on each side. Although it can tolerate low light levels, its leaves may wilt after a while.”

Snake Plants

lots of snake plants
Whether your apartment is dark or bright, tiny or big, snake plants can work for you
Grumpy Cow Studios/Getty Images

Samantha Jones, gardening expert at MyJobQuote, describes snake plants as “one of the most easy-going houseplants.”

She told Newsweek: “They need very little attention and only a brief watering once a week—and they will survive longer without water if you forget. Choose a species with lots of variegation to add bright patterns to your interior.”

Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera is a great addition to your windowsill
Albina Yalunina/Getty Images

According to Wren Kitchens, this striking soft green plant not only looks great on your windowsill, it also has anti-inflammatory properties.

A spokesperson told Newsweek: Pinch off a leaf and squeeze the gel substance on any burns you have, and it’ll soothe them whilst speeding up the healing process. Perfect for any oven accidents!

“It’s a bright light lover, so place it by a window and make sure to let it dry out before watering.”

Pothos Plant

Pothos
Species such as pothos, prayer plants and dracaena are happy in shadier areas.
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The pothos is “practically unkillable,” says Baby Bio’s spokesperson, thanks to its ability to thrive in even the darkest of rooms.

They added: “It also tolerates both under-watering and over-watering, making it the perfect plant for forgetful plant parents or over-enthusiastic waterers.

“When left to grow naturally it creates a dramatic trailing effect perfect for a statement shelf or bookcase, or it can be trained to grow up moss poles. It’s also very easy to propagate simply by snipping a cutting below a node and leaving to root in water for a few weeks.

“Ensure its leaves are wiped with tepid water and a cloth regularly to remove any build-up of dust, as this will encourage even more growth.”

Geraniums

Geranium
There is something about plants such as geraniums in a home that make people feel at ease.
Zbynek Pospisil/Getty Images

Geraniums aren’t just for gardens. Lux suggests their vibrant flowers can make conservatories and other bright interior spaces shine—well before the bedding and balcony plant season begins.

She added: “Other geranium varieties, such as the decorative butterfly geranium, will also thrive in a bright spot indoors if cared for correctly. In the long term, however, they’ll do best in a sunny to semi-shady spot outdoors.”

String of Pearls

String of Pearls
If you’re looking for an easy succulent to grow indoors, opt for the string of beads (Senecio rowleyanus) plant
Jessica Ruscello/Getty Images

Morgan advises plant parents to place the string of pearls “somewhere bright, but not in direct sunlight and watch it trail down.”

He added: “Water it every one to two weeks and let its soil dry out completely between each watering session.

“Make sure that there is plenty of room for the plant to sprawl. The string of pearls enjoys an average room temperature, but doesn’t do well when placed in drafty areas or lower temperatures. It will thrive well in almost any standard household setting.”

Cissus Discolor

Grape Ivy Plant
Grape ivy makes a good indoor plant because its native habitat is in tropical climes such as Venezuela.
Farhan Nashrullah/Getty Images

Cissus disolor is sometimes known as the rex begonia or grape ivy, even though it isn’t a begonia or an ivy plant. It is “fab for brightening your home,” according to Jones.

She said: “Its heart-shaped green and white patterned leaves have a maroon underside, making it very attractive. You only need to water it every one to two weeks and it will sit happily in dry soil for a while.

“It’s not fussy about the type of compost you use, and it can be grown around a cane or simply left to trail from a hanging plant pot.”