Easy Houseplants
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12 Easy Houseplants to Brighten Up Your Home

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Low-Maintenance Leafies
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Low-Maintenance Leafies

Filling your home with plants has many benefits. They can boost mood and lower anxiety, improve air quality, and increase productivity, among other things. Plus, let's be honest — they just add a certain amount of life to a space you might otherwise feel pretty stale about. That said, visiting your local nursery can be an overwhelming experience. If you're a houseplant beginner or just want some suggestions for new options, read on. There's bound to be a plant or two among these options you haven't introduced into your indoor jungle.


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Snake Plant
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Hoya Obovata
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Hoya Obovata

This Indonesia-native, succulent-like houseplant will do well in bright- to medium-light conditions and can withstand a certain amount of neglect; its large, speckled dark green leaves hold a large amount of H2O between waterings. It also grows relatively quickly, which can be satisfying for plant owners, and will flower light pink and white blooms in spring and summer.


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Money Tree
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Money Tree

Also known as Pachira aquatica, this plant is a mini-version of the tropical wetland tree native to Central and South America that is thought to bring wealth to those that own it. (Worth a shot, right?) It's a favorite of plant stylist and propagation educator Hilton Carter, who writes in his book "Wild at Home" that the money tree "makes a nice addition to an indoor jungle because it doesn't require a ton of light and also grows quite slowly. This means you don't have to repot it or move it to a new location very often." It will thrive in bright indirect light but will also do just fine in lower-light conditions.


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ZZ Plant
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ZZ Plant

Another plant that's great for lower-light conditions, Zamioculcas zamiifolia is additionally a great option for beginner plant enthusiasts because it can withstand a certain amount of neglect and is drought-tolerant. One important thing to note: The ZZ plant is toxic, so it's best for households without small children and curious pets.


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Rubber Plant
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Rubber Plant

Another favorite of Carter's is the Ficus elastica, which is a fast grower and therefore encouraging to new plant owners. "I know monsteras and fiddle-leaf figs have been all the rage in recent years, but I'm calling it here, right now," he writes. "The rubber plant will be the next trend-setting plant."

Peace Lily
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Peace Lily

This one is a favorite among many plant lovers, particularly those who love the occasional blooms. "The anticipation of flowers is always a treat," Cheng says. "They will demand watering by dramatically wilting, but will recover with a nice thorough watering. You will learn to water before the leaves get to this point."


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African Milk Tree
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African Milk Tree

Also known as Euphorbia trigona, the African Milk Tree can be bought small but will eventually grow to up to 6 to 8 feet under the right conditions. It prefers indirect sun or even partial shade. Finally, as a succulent, it doesn't need a ton of water and is drought-tolerant.


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Bird of Paradise
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Bird of Paradise

This tropical plant will flower under the right conditions, but achieving those right conditions in the house can be tricky. Otherwise, however, it's a fairly easy plant to care for, and Carter lists it among his favorites. "I love how large the paddle-like leaves of this plant get and how it can instantly bring a 'jungle' feel to any space," he writes.


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Sago Palm
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Sago Palm

The Cycas revoluta is a great beginner's houseplant that provides a lot of texture and visual interest with its feather-like leaves. These plants do well in a variety of light conditions and will tolerate a plant parent who occasionally forgets to water. One interesting fact: The Sago Palm is a member of the cycad family, which is one of the oldest plant groups, dating back to 280 million years ago.


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Pothos
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Pothos

Also known as Devil's Ivy, this is another low-maintenance plant that can thrive in a wide range of environments. Cheng likes it because it "can grow rapidly and the long vines create a nice jungle feel. Their leaves will droop slightly when the soil is dry, but they'll recover with a good soaking."


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Triostar
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Triostar

Also known as Stromanthe sanguinea and a member of the prayer plant family, this fun plant holds a surprise: It will fold its leaves up at night, notes Carter, and also when it's thirsty, giving owners a visual reminder that watering is necessary. With variegated leaves in green, white, and pink, the pretty, humidity-loving triostar also requires misting during drier months.


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Philodendron Birkin
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Philodendron Birkin

This houseplant stands out from others because of the pattern of its leaves, a dark green and light yellow variegation. It does well in bright, indirect light, and because of its tropical origin, will do well when grouped next to a larger plant that blocks direct sun.


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Care Notes
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Care Notes

No matter which plants you bring home, it's important to keep some things in mind. "For the best experience with plant growth, I always recommend putting plants as close to your largest windows as possible and only blocking direct sun if the duration will be longer than two or three hours," Cheng notes. "Moving farther into a room is significantly slowing down photosynthesis, and putting plants in dark corners is just starving the plant — where you will watch it decline until you quietly throw it away."


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Final Plant Thoughts
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Final Plant Thoughts

Finally, Cheng recommends patience and realistic expectations. "Most people get discouraged with plant care because they think if they do it 'properly,' then the plant should look perfect all the time," he says. "Plants are living things — they will grow according to your care, but also according to your environmental conditions. The way a plant looks isn't 100% because of your care, so give them the best possible conditions ... but accept that nature will take its course. Older leaves will die [and] not everything can or needs to be fixed. This is the key to long-term houseplant enjoyment."


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