Add A Little Zen To Your Space With These Easy To Care For Houseplants

Brooklyn Apartment Living Room Plants

My main goal when I redecorated my living room a few years ago was to create a minimalist yet chic space with a zen vibe. I wanted my space to be comfortable, cozy and peaceful with a little bit of glam. Although I achieved my goal and loved the space that I created, I was still missing something. Plants. Houseplants not only bring zen to a space, they enhance the decor and purify the air. I always thought that I didn’t have enough light in my apartment for plants. But I was wrong. There are quite a few plants that can not only survive with minimal light, but require minimal care. Let me show y’all my little collection of easy to care for houseplants.

How To Add Zen To Your Space With Houseplants

Lucky Bamboo

Lucky Bamboo (Dracaena Sanderiana) is the best plant for your space if you’re looking to add zen. The plant is believed to bring good luck and prosperity, along with other transformative properties to your life depending on the number of stalks you choose. I chose 5 stalks for Balance, Peace & Harmony. Lucky Bamboo is also the easiest plant that you’ll ever care for. Simply stick the stalks in a vase of water with some decorative rocks. Put the vase in a spot where it gets some indirect light, and replenish the water when it gets low. That’s it.

Raven ZZ Plant Decor

ZZ Plant

The ZZ Plant (Zamioculcas Zamiifolia) thrives on neglect and can grow just about anywhere. Even in a dark corner. Although I don’t suggest this (keep reading to learn why). The ZZ plant doesn’t even need natural light and can thrive under fluorescent lights. It’s a succulent and is therefore extremely drought tolerant due to thick, potato like rhizomes under the soil that store water. Only water when the plant is completely dry to the bottom of the pot. My plant is a ZZ Raven, which is a rare variety with almost-black foliage.

Variegated Snake Plant in Terracotta Pot

Snake Plant

The Snake Plant (Sansevieria) is another plant that can grow just about anywhere. They too require minimal light, and also minimal water since they’re succulents and store water in their leaves. Only water the plant when it’s BONE dry throughout the entire pot. There are different varieties of the Snake Plant. I prefer the Variegated Snake Plants as the yellow trim gives the plant an interesting look.

Aloe Plant Pups in Pots

Aloe

Another succulent, the Aloe Plant (Aloe Vera) stores water in the thick, fleshy leaves. It likes to be completely dry before watering and prefers bright light. So you’ll want to sit this one in the brightest spot available in your space. Which is probably directly on the windowsill. When the Aloe grows into an adult it will start to put out babies. The babies can be removed from the mother plant and potted in their own pots to create new houseplants. That’s how I started my two Aloe plants.

Pothos Propogation

Pothos

The Pothos (Epipremnum Aureum) prefers bright, indirect light. But it also does well in low light conditions. It’s a trailing plant that’s perfect for hanging, or displaying on top of a bookcase or high shelf. Water regularly when the soil is completely dry and the Pothos will generously put out leaves. You’ll be able to propagate new pants from the abundance. I propagated my plant from a large plant at my office. It’s developed roots. But I’m still waiting on new growth.

Curly Bonnie Spider Plant in hanging basket

Spider Plant

The Spider Plant (Chlorophytum Comosum) thrives in bright, indirect light. But also does well in lower light. Too much sun will cause dried out, brown tips. The plant prefers evenly moist soil, not too wet or dry. So water when the plant is dry almost to the bottom of the pot. The Spider Plant looks best in a hanging pot or on a shelf since it produces unique strings of “spiderettes” or baby plants that hang off the plant. These babies grow into larger plants and can be cut off to produce new plants. This Curly Bonnie Spider Plant is my latest acquisition and I love her. I have her hanging out in this hanging pot until my macrame plant hanger arrives.

Monstera Deliciosa Houseplant

Swiss Cheese Plant

The Swiss Cheese Plant (Monstera Deliciosa) is a monster of a plant. First and foremost, you should make sure that you have enough space as this plant can get quite large. The plant tolerates low light but grows faster (and larger) in brighter light. Put it right in front of the window if your space has low light. No direct sun though as it will burn. If you have too much sunlight, put up a sheer curtain to protect your Monstera. Or put it a few feet away from the window. Monsteras prefer moist soil. So water regularly when the top few inches of soil gets dry. The plant is drought tolerant though so no need to worry too much if it dries completely. Just water ASAP.

Shop My Houseplants

There are a few local shops in my neighborhood where I buy my houseplants. But I also shop for my plants online. I love buying plants from Amazon, especially since they arrive in two days with Prime shipping. I’ve received healthy, beautiful plants for the most part. But haven’t had any problems with resolution when an issue arises. Amazon has been my main source for buying plants while in quarantine. But keep in mind that shipping times are delayed due to the pandemic. So your plant will take a little longer to arive.

How To Decorate With Houseplants

Decorating With Houseplants

I showcase my larger plants in woven baskets to enhance the decor in my space. They look gorgeous sitting on the floor or in a plant stand. I have a baseboard heater under my windows. So I have my Monstera on a plant stand to protect her from the heat. My ZZ plant is also on a plant stand to allow her to stand higher and get a little more sun. To help me not kill my plants and achieve a cohesive look, I have most of my windowsill plants in terracotta pots. With the exception of my Aloe plants which are in cute little cement planters as I could not pass them up. I also use this bamboo shelf on my windowsill to give me space for more houseplants. I can’t wait to get my macrame hangers as they are going to look gorgeous hanging in the window.

Easy To Care For Houseplants

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Houseplants Care

These houseplants are very easy to care for and hard to kill. So I’m ashamed to admit that I’ve killed a few and had to replace them. I showed my plants a little too much love which ultimately led to their untimely death by way of root rot. Root rot happens when plants sit in extremely wet soil for too long. The roots don’t get enough oxygen and start to decay. The rot then spreads to healthy roots and eventually kills the entire plant. I’ve also almost killed a few plants but was able to revive them. I don’t want you to go through this. So here’s a few tips to keep these plants alive that I’ve learned on my short #plantmom journey.

First- Don’t repot before it’s time. It’s time to repot when the roots completely fill the container and there’s almost no soil left. When this time comes, get a pot one to two inches larger and fill the bottom third with well draining soil. I use 50/50 succulent & cactus soil mix and perlite for all of these plants. I add extra perlite to the ones that prefer to be on the drier side- like the Snake and ZZ plants. Next, lift the plant out of it’s old pot and sit it in the new pot. Make sure the rootball sits where it did before. Fill in the sides with soil and water the plant thoroughly so that it can settle in. Don’t remove the old soil or mess with the roots unless you absolutely must. I’ve found that every time I messed with the roots the plant died.

Next- Don’t water on a schedule. Yes there is a such thing as giving plants too much water, which causes root rot. Especially if your plant is in a pot that is too large with excess soil. All of these plants are pretty drought tolerant. So you want to let the pot dry out almost completely before watering. Stick your finger in the pot and push it down in the soil as far as you can to check for moisture. If you don’t feel any, then it’s time to water. Water thoroughly until it starts to trickle through the drain holes (which your pot should have). I’d also suggest sticking to terracotta pots if you have a heavy watering hand. They help to wick excess moisture from the soil and allow the plant’s roots to breathe.

Last but not least- Let there be light. Although these houseplants can survive in low light, you should give them the best light that you can provide. The less light that houseplants receive, the longer it will take for the roots to soak up water. Plants sitting in wet soil for too long are prime candidates for root rot. So if possible, don’t put plants too far away from the windows and definitely don’t stick them in dark corners. This way they’ll get enough light to grow and thrive. Remember- bright, indirect light is best for these plants to avoid sunburn.

Do you have any houseplants?

The product(s) in this post were purchased with my own money. See my Disclosure page for additional information.

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Erica
Erica

When I’m not hunting down the latest and greatest beauty products, beating a face or lacing a do, you can find me roaming the streets of NYC in my stilettos looking for the next best restaurant. Or in the kitchen trying to outdo myself from the last time.

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