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House Plants for Beginners

So you think you can kill even an artificial plant? Before you give up indoor gardening, check out some easy-to-grow house plants. These are great for the home or office.

Choosing the Best Houseplants for Beginners

Houseplant Care

Houseplant Care

Plants need thorough watering, even if it's delivered irregularly. Use tepid (room-temperature) water until it flows out of the drainage hole in the bottom of the container.


  • At home, place plants in the kitchen or bathroom where the humidity is normally higher. Grouping plants is also a way to grab extra humidity from the air.
  • Another method is to get a saucer, put a layer of marbles in the bottom and partially fill the saucer with water. Place the container on top of the marbles. Don't let the pot sit in the water. The idea is to capture evaporating moisture, not wick it into the root system and cause root rot.


  • In general, temperatures between 65°F and 75°F during the daytime are best.
  • Temperatures about 10 degrees cooler at night are best. Heating and air conditioning systems can wreak havoc on houseplants.
  • Try not to place houseplant near ventilation outlets or in drafty areas.
  • Use blinds or curtains to regulate direct light from windows.


Use a diluted houseplant fertilizer. Follow the product instructions and precautions.

Wipe the leaves if they're dusty to keep them clean and able to breathe. Another purpose of regular grooming is to keep an eye open for pests and diseases.


  • Low Light — Prefer or can tolerate minimum light. North-facing windows are a good place for one of these. The interior locations of the house (coffee tables for example) offer a good environment as well.
  • Medium / Indirect — Bright light but no direct sun is the rule for these. West- or south-facing windows are great. Just keep them 1 to 2 feet from the window itself.
  • Bright / Direct — Here are the sun worshippers. Put them on the windowsill facing south or west.

Best Houseplants for Beginners

Houseplants for Beginners Chart

Use this chart to determine the plants that will work best in your home.

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