asparagus fern

Unique, cheap indoor plants that are easy to take care of

Disclaimer: I have personally taken care of all of these plants, seen growth, and only killed one. And that was more of a philanthropic sacrifice.

What does ‘easy-care’ mean when it comes to house plants?

I’m assuming that you’re willing to give your plant some kind of care. Like, you can’t just let it fend for itself. You’ll need to water it at some point.

It’s important to note that what’s easy-care for one person, isn’t for another. For example, I can keep calathea relatively easily because 1. my house is naturally humid and 2. I have space in my kitchen for a tray of water to sit out, s whenever I notice a dry plant, I can just pop it in the tray.

I’m classifying easy-care as having these characteristics:

  • The plant is fairly drought tolerant. It won’t get crispy tips or die if you miss the odd watering
  • The plant doesn’t require high levels of humidity.
  • The plant doesn’t require any complex fertiliser regimen
  • The plant isn’t particularly prone to pests.
  • The plant will happily survive if you go away for a couple of weeks
  • It doesn’t grow so fast you’re constantly re-potting.

So, now we have that out of the way, let’s look at these unique, easy-care plants.

String of Pearls

string of pearls

String of pearls are one of those plants that are so well known in the plant community, but ‘normal people’ think they’re so cool.

I too think they’re cool, and can we please have a moment of silence for the one pictured above, because since this photo was taken I decided I was sick of its shenanigans and it went in the bin.

You see, it’s had aphids as long as I’ve had it, and whilst it didn’t seem adversely affected by them itself, it insisted on giving aphids to all my other plants. It never thrived tbh, because it was SUPER overwatered when I got it.

I don’t mean to put you off. I’m planning on getting another, because I love them, BUT I would recommend getting yours from somewhere that doesn’t overwater its plants.

Price-wise, we’re looking at about £15 for a decent-sized plant, but you can get bambinos for under £5 in many garden centres.

Sure, it’s not exactly rare, but it’s definitely unique and pretty cheap.

The only issue you may have here is light – SOP do like a lot of bright, indirect light.

Chain of Hearts

If you’re after a propagation project, chain of hearts is the one. They propagate SUPER easily – if you want a fuller plant, just snip off the ends and stick them back in the soil. As long as you put the right end in the soil – i.e. the cut end – it’ll probably take.

I keep my COH in a pretty tiny pot, but it still doesn’t need watering more than about every three weeks.

Aglaonema Crete

I love aglaonema, and I see a lot more of them than I once did, so I think everyone’s on agreement.

As you can see, you can get some really beautiful colour variations in aglaonema, and let’s not forget the much sought after aglaonema pictum tricolour, which literally looks like camouflage. I’m not including that particular one in this list because they’re pretty expensive.

My aglaonema Crete was about £8 I think. Definitely less than £10. It’s super easy to care for – water it every couple of weeks and…not much else. It’s in a warm room (23ishC) with less than 50% humidity.

I have a comprehensive plant profile focussing on Aglaonema here.

Epipremnum Marble Planet

This plant also goes by the name Monstera Peru. At least, I think they’re the same plant. That’s the general consensus online anyway.

This plant grows like a pothos. It requires nothing from me bar a drink every couple of weeks. Once I dropped it down the stairs – soil everywhere. I discovered that a) it was a load of cuttings rather than one plant and b) they really don’t care if you drop them down the stairs. Expect to pay about £15.

Philodendron Selloum

philodendron selloum

This monster was a fiver from Wilko. A FIVER. He needs water on about a monthly basis, and he requires very little else. I’ve kept mine in all kinds of light and humidity variations and he doesn’t seems bothered. Not exactly fast growing in my experience, but considering his size that’s probably a good thing.

Dracaena Marginata Tricolor

dracaena marginata tricolor

This is another plant that will grow better in more light, but I have it about 8 feet away from the winter and it’s shooting out new growth. I have noticed that the colours aren’t as vibrant as when it was kept close to the window though.

If you do keep it next to the window, just watch out for brown tips – mine developed them because the glass was too cold.

Dracaena is very drought tolerant BUT give them ample water and they’ll grow like mad.

If your plants suffer from brown tips, it could be for any number of reasons – check out this post dedicated to brown tip diagnosis.

Burros Tails

burros tail succulent

It took my burros tails a while to get into the swing of growing, but now it’s really got some momentum going.

This plant is great for window sills that you cover with curtains because they benefit from the drop in temperature at night, which can kill a lot of tropical house plants.

Again, the amount you water will affect how much growth you get. Be sure to let the soil dry out completely (get a moisture meter and only water when it reads 1) but then give it a good drink. Succulents need more water than you might think but don’t overwater (hence the moisture metre) because they can suffer from root rot.

Burros tails are easy to find and super cheap – you can get a plug for a couple of quid, or a bigger plant for £10-£15.

Asparagus fern

asparagus fern

Asparagus ferns aren’t true ferns, so they don’t require the humidity and damp soil that other ferns do. They’re pretty drought tolerant and don’t need high humidity.

As you can see, mine has a few brown fronds, but you can just snip those off and more frons will grow.

I’ve seen these for sale in supermarkets for about £5. There definitely seems to be ebbs and flows in asparagus fern availability, so if you see one, grab it – you might not see another one for a while.

Avocado plants

avocado plant

These are FREE with avocados and super satisfying to grow. I love them. I have no idea what I’m going to do with it when it gets too big for that window, but we can cross that bridge when we come to it.

If you’re interested in growing your own avocado plant from a pit, I have a post on exactly how to do it here.

Philodendron Micans

Like asparagus ferns, these go through stages of being in every garden centre and then be nowhere to be seen for months. I got mine for about £7.99, and I love it. I actually think it’s one of my favourite plants. The leaves are lush and velvety, and when the leaves die they go the most beautiful colours. Check out this Instagram post to see that.

Conclusion

I hope this was useful to you. I wrote this post because I know how frustrating it is when you start a hobby and you think that your finances are holding you back. rest assured, there are so many cool, cheap house plants out there that are easy to care for.

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