5 Hard to Kill Houseplants

“Mom bought another plant to kill.”

I used to hear this every time I would bring home fresh victim, I mean, new plant. You can probably infer from the sentiment, that I don’t have a green thumb. It is true. I’ll be the first to admit it. But, I love the way plants add life to my home. They can help with air purification and have a sculptural quality that make them an ideal element for decorating.

So what’s a girl with two brown thumbs to do?

 After much trial and error, I have found 5 indoor plants that are extremely hard to kill, even with my limited horticulture skills.

Sansevieria trifasciata

Also known as snake plant or (less flattering to my MIL), mother-in-law tongue. This plant can literally grow in a closet! True story: my mom had one in the garage for about a month and half and it still survived. It’s extremely tolerant of low light levels and irregular watering (now you’re speaking my language) As a bonus, during the wintertime it needs only one watering every couple of months! I have yet to kill one, so I put them in almost every room in the house!

This snake plant hangs out in my master bedroom

Here's my newest addition, my vintage bullet planter happily housing a snake plant.

 I used two snake plants to give some balance and symmetry to the tv wall.

I used two snake plants to give some balance and symmetry to the tv wall.

Epipremnum aureum

Also known as golden pothos, hunter's robe, ivy arum, money plant,  and silver vine. This is another plant that does well just about anywhere.  It can handle both low light and bright sunlight and will forgive you if you forget to water it consistently. There are a few variations of this plant an all of them are pretty hard to kill. My favorite thing about this plant, it that it is easy to root. Just snip off a piece, stick it water and in no time, you'll have another plant to put in a pretty pot!

This was the perfect plant for this fun little pot I got at Urban Outfitters. My living room doesn't get a ton of light, but as long as I remember to water this guy on occasion, he should do well.

Beaucarnea recurvata

Also known as pony tail palm, bottle palm tree or elephant foot tree. This is such a cute plant! It is actually succulent which explains why I am able to grow it! It likes to go outside in the summer time and doesn’t die when water is scarce. (are we sensing a theme here?). I have a small plant, but have seen larger ones and they are really sculptural and will add a lot of texture to any room. 

I just re-potted this plant so it will have room to grow!


These plants vary but have a couple things in common, most have thick leaves that store water, and shallow roots. These features make them the perfect plant for shallow containers and again, you don’t have to worry so much about watering them! I love to find interesting containers and make little succulent gardens.  

This is a cute little compote I got at a thrift store, a little bit of dirt, a few succulents and some decorative rocks now my vintage find has a purpose!

Faux Greenery

Blasphemy! Did I suggest using fake plants? Didn’t that go out the door with grandma’s plastic flowers? I’m talking about “good” faux greenery.  If you really can’t be bothered with a real live house plant, there are some very good (read, not fake looking) florals out there. They can be more expensive but they don’t have to be.  I have found Ikea has a some decent looking faux plants and when I use them to fill in with my real plants in this arrangement, you’d be hard pressed to tell which are fake and which are real.

I like to use a tray of small plants as a center piece. Can you spot the imposter?

Here's another faux plant. This vintage container had a crack in it so I wasn't able to put a real plant in it. Voila! Faux to the rescue!

Bonus: Plant Starts

Another idea is to take clippings from your plants and arrange them in small vases with water. The plants shown here, have been living in these little vases for a couple of years.  I just change the water whenever I dust and the plants continue to grow.  They are ready to plant when I find cute containers for them.

These are cuttings from other plants. Just stick them in cute little vases and you have an instant center piece.

Know when to let go

What happens when if one of these hard to kill beauties actually does bite the dust? Speaking from experience, don't water sticks in dirt thinking they are going to rise from the dead. Sadly, it doesn't work. My advice would be to start over. Consider this, you might spend $20-25 on a fresh flower arrangement that will last maybe two weeks. You can spend a little more, or significantly less on a house plant that will last at least a month without any effort at all and much longer if you give it a little water and some attention. So get out there, find some fun containers and start planting your own victims...I mean plants!


What plants have you had success with? Leave a comment and let me know! And as always, if you need some help with your space, drop me a line! I'm here for you!

Live colorfully,