Be-leaf in Yourself: Five Plants You Can’t Kill

Avalon Llewellyn

Cover image: Nina Pirola | @nina.pirola


If you’re new to the world of plants, it can be overwhelming to work out which plants are going to thrive and which are going to die as soon as you bring them home. With hundreds of species, colours, foliage and flowers, your choices are endless. If you’re known to everyone else as the ‘plant killer’ or a ‘black thumb’ then this list of the top five hardiest plants is for you. Some may even say that these plants thrive on neglect…


1. Mother In Law’s Tongue

Open any dated decor book and you’ll find a Mother In Law’s Tongue on a bedside table or behind the couch. Their striking bold leaves often painted with yellow or white stripes will take a room from zero to one hundred. Aptly named, these guys will seriously survive anything. Outdoors, indoors, you could probably put them through a washing machine and they’d still be going strong.


Watering Requirement: Sparingly

Light: Can tolerate most conditions, but prefer mid range light


2. Devils Ivy/Pothos

This species of plant is the original low light, black thumb flora that everyone needs to have at least once in their life. With different colours, treat yourself to a lime baby, a dark green boy or maybe a white and soft green combo. They are very happy to trail up a bookshelf or over a window frame but also love to trail over a pot down a shelf. They grow quickly, so are perfect for filling up a large area in as little time as possible.


Watering: Allow soil to dry out between watering

Light: Can tolerate most conditions, but prefers bright indirect light (no direct sun)


3. Heart Leaf Philodendron

Now THIS is the type of plant you want in your home. With giant heart shaped leaves and a desire to crawl anywhere and everywhere, you can take home a cutting and end up with a jungle in a matter of months. It goes well in low light so it’s perfect for those rooms that don’t get the sun you desire. Treat yourself to a big bushy pot of this plant and get excited to watch it flourish.


Watering: Allow soil to dry out between watering

Light: Can tolerate most conditions, but prefers bright indirect light (no direct sun)


4. Peace Lily

In the past you’ve probably owned a plant that looked excellent for weeks and then the next day you woke up to it dying with leaves dropping and no sign of good health. Rest assured, the peace lily will not be one of those plants. The peace lily has made it onto this list for having top notch communication. If you haven’t watered it enough, or it isn’t receiving enough light then its leaves will droop considerably, letting you know it needs some TLC. As soon as it gets what it needs, it’ll perk right up again and if you’re lucky, every spring/summer it’ll give you some wonderful white flowers as well.


Watering: When soil is dry or leaves are drooping (give extra during summer)

Light: Bright Indirect light


5. Monstera Siltepecana

This funky plant is one for the collectors who are looking for something a little more special. Found in nurseries or from online plant stores, this plant is close relatives with the Monstera Deliciosa or the “Fruit Salad” plant that nearly everyone has owned at least once in their life. For the siltepecana however, its most jaw dropping feature are the beautiful silver shimmers you can only see in the sunlight. As a climbing plant, it loves to crawl up a moss or coir pole as the more mature it gets the larger leaves it produces. Easy to propagate and a real special one for the collection, this is a must-have for anyone who wants to learn more about the wonderful world of indoor plants.  


Watering: Allow soil to dry out between watering

Light: Bright indirect light


Irrespective of the plants you choose to purchase, the benefits of having plants indoors are endless. Plants lower carbon dioxide levels, reduce levels of certain pollutants such as benzene and nitrogen dioxide, and reduce airborne dust levels. Aside from the chemical benefits of owning indoor plants, many people say they feel their mood improve when surrounding themselves with greenery. Studies have shown concentration and productivity increases when you surround yourself with green friends. Similarly, gardening, or indoor plant ownership can be an excellent hobby that is simultaneously calming and rewarding as your plant collection grows.


Treat yourself this weekend to a trip to your local plant nursery and happy planting!


For more frond-ly plant advice, find Avalon on instagram @plantswithavalon