FAMILY & PARENTING

10 Plants That Won’t Die If They Aren’t Watered For A Week (Or Two)

by Karen Belz
Karen Belz has written for sites such as Bustle, HelloGiggles, Romper, and So Yummy. She's the mom of a sassy toddler and drinks an alarming amount of Sugar-Free Red Bull in order to keep up with her.

It’s often hard for adults to find time for hobbies — especially when you have kids. Usually, any free time you have gets spent on your kids’ preferred activities.

That said, it’s really important to carve out at least one thing for yourself. It could be knitting, basket weaving, or just gardening.

While springtime is the best time to start on seeds and outdoor vegetables, indoor plants can help keep you company all year long. Plants should be incorporated in any house. And since NBC News reports that owning plants can make you feel better as a person, it’s good to have some knowledge on plants that won’t die — at least, they won’t die because of a bit of user error.

I, personally, love plants and can’t leave Home Depot without a new green buddy.

Plants that won’t die all that easily will also make your living space much saner — especially if you’re cooped inside. As humans with a lot going on, we may forget about our plants due to other big concerns (hello, coronavirus.) Other times, we might be watering them too much. Obviously, plants can’t talk. You can eventually figure out when they’re too hydrated, but it may be a tough call at the moment.

That still should never serve as a reason not to buy a handful of new indoor plants. Here are 10 types of plants to be on the lookout for.

1. Chinese Evergreen

plants that won't die

The Chinese evergreen is known as a “beginner’s plant” — but even if you have established your green thumb, they’re still great to have indoors. They require low light and low water. So if you’re currently living in a place that the sun doesn’t seem to hit, consider buying a Chinese evergreen to keep your home looking lively.

2. African Violets

plants that won't die

If flowers are your thing, you’re probably pretty familiar with African violets. They come in a small variety of colors, although purple is one of the most popular. While they prefer a lot of light, they don’t need all that much in order to survive. The soil should stay lightly moist. The main water issue with African violets is making sure that water doesn’t stay on this plant’s leaves for long, since they might end up rotting. (But that’s fairly easy to watch out for.)

3. Spider Plant

3. Spider Plant

If you were ever in an elementary school classroom back in the ’80s or ’90s, you’re probably familiar with spider plants. They are super cute, and they were very common back then. Each plant had “babies” that students could take home. Why not bring spider plants back into your life? These are quick to grow and require only occasional water and a little bit of indirect sun.

4. Aloe Plants

plants you can't kill

Listen, I’m going to be honest here — I did accidentally kill an aloe plant once, but that’s because I didn’t realize how little water it needed. Aloe plants are amazing, since they provide so much and require so little. They do enjoy the sun, and they grow pretty quickly, so it’s a plant worth adding to your collection. Just go easy on the water.

 

5. Ponytail Palm

plants you can't kill
Karen Belz/LittleThings

My ponytail palm, on the other hand, is one of my most successful indoor plants. It came home with me years ago, after I literally couldn’t take my eyes off it. This is pretty much the Totally Hair Barbie of plants.

Ponytail palms thrive with a lot of sunlight, so putting it near a window is best. But don’t worry about the sun dehydrating the plant. Their water needs are very minimal. If the plant starts rotting at the base, you’ve done too much.

6. Pancake Plant

plants you can't kill

You might also know these best as being the Chinese money plant, or a pilea. The one issue is that they can often be hard to find. Apartment Therapy thinks that the best way to get one is to take a cutting from a friend who’s also into plants. But if none of your friends has one, you can also look online. It’s a great investment, as it’s a cute plant that doesn’t require a lot of care or direct sunlight.

7. Philodendron

plants you can't kill

A philodendron’s leaves will tell you whether or not you’re watering too much or too little. Yellow means that it’s getting too much water. If the leaves are brown, it needs more. Apartment Therapy states that philodendron plants don’t even need soil to thrive. They’re also great at procreating, meaning that your philodendron can create even more philodendrons for your home, or even to give as gifts. (Seriously — plants are fun gifts.)

8. Yucca

plants you can't kill

Yucca plants are tall and glorious, and they can even survive in a drought. So if you’re the type of person who forgets to water plants, a yucca may be your best bet. According to Plant Delights, they need only about an inch of water weekly in the spring and summer months. But they say that even if you wait a few years before watering it, it’ll probably still survive. They also aren’t very particular about the type of soil you plant them in. There’s a bit of variety between plants, which means you can grab a bunch of them to liven up every room.

9. Christmas Cactus

plants you can't kill

Another one of my most successful plants has been my Christmas cactus. Even better, my family has passed down generational cuttings. So my plant is an offshoot of a plant my great-great-grandmother had. And yes, I plan on passing it down (that is, if I can figure out how to take a good cutting).

A Christmas cactus reportedly needs more water when it’s flowering, but it can easily go some time without. Like many plants, this one may suffer from root rot if it’s watered too much.

10. Crown of Thorns

plants you can't kill

This plant has two things going for it — its awesome name, and the fact that it’s relatively easy to take care of. It does like to be in the sun, but it’s forgiving if you forget to water it.

Sadly, this isn’t a great plant if you have pets or small children. The plant is poisonous to them, and you should also wear gloves while handling it. But if you live alone, and you like plants (with a side of danger), feel free to home a few of these.