How To

5 Low-Cost (and Low-Maintenance!) Houseplants

5 Low-Cost (and Low-Maintenance!) Houseplants :: Mint.com/blog

BrightNest is a free site that provides tools and tips to homeowners to help them save money, get organized and keep their homes in great shape. Sign up for a free BrightNest account today!

Low-maintenance houseplants are great, but not all “easy-to-care-for” florae are equally as easy to pay for!

For example, many florists recommend the Chinese Evergreen because it’s low-maintenance and attractive, but it also costs almost $150.

You don’t need to empty your wallet to reap the benefits of houseplants! If you shop carefully, you can have the best of both worlds.

Here are five hard-to-kill houseplants that won’t break your budget:

Rabbit Foot Fern

Cost: $10-$30 (depending on size)

Care: This plant is totally average: Give it average light (out of direct sunlight), average water (allow 1 inch of soil to dry out between waterings) and keep it in average room temperatures. That’s it!

Size: They can grow up to 2 feet long, so it’s a good idea to put them in a hanging basket.

Tip: This plant has furry rhizomes (hence the name). Make sure they stay above the soil surface – if you bury them, they’ll rot.

Peperomia Caperata

Cost: About $25 (less if small)

Care: The only thing that really bothers this guy is soggy soil, so don’t overwater the plant. Keep the humidity level about average and keep the plant away from direct sunlight.

Size: These Brazilian natives grow to be about 8 inches high

Tip: This plant thrives under fluorescent light. So if your office sports these less-than-awesome light fixtures, bring in a Peperomia Caperata!

Aloe Vera

Cost: $5-$15 (depending on size)

Care: Aloe Vera doesn’t need much water, especially during the winter. Just keep the soil lightly moist, and set the potted plant in a room with average humidity and average temperatures.

Size: Aloe Vera can grow up to 2 feet high but usually caps off at about 1 foot.

Tip: Ironically, Aloe Vera sunburns easily. If you want to transition the plant from being an indoor plant to an outdoor plant, do it gradually.

Peace Lily

Cost: $20-$40 (depending on size)

Care: The Peace Lily is by far the easiest flowering houseplant to care for – it tolerates average indoor conditions like a pro. Simply keep the plant out of direct sunlight and water it regularly.

Size: These big girls can get up to 3 feet high!

Tip: If your Peace Lily isn’t blooming, it probably isn’t getting enough sun. Just move it to a brighter location.

Mother-in-Law’s Tongue

Cost: About $15

Care: Mother-in-Law’s Tongue are almost as easygoing as Peace Lily – it can tolerate just about anything. The only thing this plant doesn’t like is extreme cold (but it can tolerate fluctuating temperatures).

Size: This plant grows straight up to about 2 feet.

Tip: If water pools on the leaves they might rot, so avoid watering the center of the plant.