Unusual Low-Maintenance Houseplants You Probably Haven’t Heard Of
But are going to want to bring home.
When picking out a new houseplant to bring into your home, it can be tempting to stick with a safe succulent or an easy-to-care-for spider plant, but there are plenty of interesting (or even outright strange) houseplants that don’t require a ton of maintenance. If this is your first foray into uncommon plant life, these unfussy varieties are ideal starter plants. The carnivorous pitcher plant and sculptural staghorn fern naturally draw attention, but they don’t require much care. The key is to choose a plant that matches your home’s environment and your lifestyle so that caring for the plant fits in seamlessly with how you live. For example, if you’re hardly ever home, a plant that requires daily watering likely isn’t the best match. And if your home is notoriously chilly, that tropical plant that thrives in a warm, humid environment probably isn’t the right fit. With these intriguing and low-maintenance plants available to order online, there’s no reason to settle for a boring begonia.
Staghorn Fern String Garden
The combination of a unique fern variety and an even more surprising display technique makes this suspended staghead fern a true standout. Named for its sculptural leaves that resemble antlers, the staghorn fern adds interest to any room. To make it even more eye-catching, this plant is hung from the ceiling in a string-bound moss and soil ball, a Japanese bonsai technique called kokedama. Caring for this special plant is easier than you might think: Keep the plant in indirect sunlight and submerge the ball in water when it’s dry.
To buy: $48; terrain.com.
Marimo Moss Ball
You’ve likely never thought about buying a moss ball as a houseplant, but when you consider it’s ability to survive low light and cool conditions, it may just become your new favorite plant. A classic addition to home aquariums, moss is a conversation-sparking home accessory in its own right. Place the moss balls in a clear container so they can soak up some (indirect) sun—and so you can admire them anytime you like.
To buy: $7; thesill.com.
Chinese Money Plant
The Chinese money plant is difficult to find in plant stores and nurseries in the U.S., but once you’ve got one, it’s fairly easy to care for. Circular leaves give this plant a distinctive style and make it worth its high price. If you’re interested in owning this unique plant but aren’t ready to invest in an expensive full-size one, test your green thumb with this starter plant in a two-inch pot.
To buy: $35; optimaraplants.etsy.com.
Carnivorous Pitcher Plant
You’re no doubt familiar with the venus flytrap, but how about this other uniquely-shaped carnivorous plant: the pitcher plant? This tropical plant’s ideal location is bright and moist, so keep it near a sunny window and water it often. Don’t let the label “carnivorous” scare you away. Only healthy, full-grown pitcher plants can handle eating bugs, and they’re able to survive without them. And if you happen to have a pesky fly buzzing around the house and your pitcher plant lures it in? Just consider that an added bonus.
To buy: $10; blissgardensboutique.etsy.com.
Air Plant Tillandsia Tectorum
While you’ve likely seen air plants hanging out on driftwood and in sea shells, this fuzzy variety of the popular tillandsia may make you do a double take. The tangle of furry-looking legs is reminiscent of a tarantula or an underwater creature—just don’t try to keep it in your aquarium. This particular type of air plant prefers less water and more sunlight.
To buy: From $15; airfriend.etsy.com.