Quarantined living accelerated quite a few trends that were already growing in the last few years: remote working, DIY home remodeling and repair, pet ownership, and houseplants. That’s right. Those green leafy things that many of us purchase with the best of intentions but end up neglecting due to our busy lives outside of our homes actually became a point of focus.
Our being forced to stay home encouraged a lot of interest in cultivating something to keep us entertained instead of bored and worried. Even those of us who already invest our energies into children and/or pets, needed a new sense of purpose.
Plants have always been considered good for our quality of life, especially when it comes to indoor air quality and our personal mental well-being. Not only are they affordable, but they’re welcome recipients of our time and attention. And when we’re successful and doling out care, they give us something back – a truly valuable sense of fulfillment.
The three houseplants below are some of the most popular for new horticulturists thanks to their hardy dispositions and simple care requirements. Even if you don’t know them by name, you’ll probably recognize them upon sight.
Sansevieria trifasciata (aka the Snake Plant) – The Snake Plant has familiar dense, sword- or tongue-like leaves in variegated green. They grow tall and upright and their tips can be a little sharp, so be careful! They’re super easy to grow indoors because of their tolerance for extremely low light and irregular watering.
Monstera Deliciosa (aka Swiss cheese plant) – This Monstera has been turning up everywhere. Outdoors, their leaves can grow to a truly impressive size (up to a monstrous 30 feet) and that makes them hugely popular for social media photos. Their unique, dark green leaves feature eyes or holes and florists love adding the stems to their arrangements. The Monstera likes a slightly moist soil and bright but indirect sunlight.
Maranta leuconeura (aka the Prayer Plant) – This tropical plant features oblong, dark green leaves with light green centers. The Red Prayer Plant variety, specifically, is popular because the reddish-pink veining throughout its leaves delivers a nice pop of color. Prayer Plants are low-growing and known to fold their leaves at night as if in prayer. They do well on windowsills where they can absorb indirect sunlight. They generally need moist soil, but their watering needs do require attention to current temperatures more so than other houseplants.
Anyone still on the fence about digging into the world of houseplants need not be intimidated by plantfluencers or neighborhood gardening know-it-alls. Plants are always available and in need of care. Just start small – like with the three examples above – and don’t be afraid to ask your local garden shop expert (or search engine) for advice as needed. Happy growing!