Roundup: 8 Houseplants Even College Students Can Keep Alive

 

White cinder block walls. Or worse yet, beige cinder block walls. These are the things of which typical dorm rooms are made. And although they're often cave-like, there's nothing natural about them. To add a bit of much needed life and color plants are the perfect option. And...not only do they provide companionship (seriously), if you  care for them, they'll take care of you in return by cleaning the air. Of course taking care of them is the tricky bit, especially if you're a college student with a busy schedule and have a dorm room with less than optimal natural light. Which is why you're going to want to save this list of 8 nearly indestructible house plants--or should I say "dorm" plants?


Photo: Plant Well

First up is the self-sacrificing Aloe Vera plant. This made our list for a few reasons. First, they're a breeze to grow; second, they're perfect for indirect lighting situations; and third, if you should happen to scrape or burn yourself, you can treat the wound with the plant's leaf juice. Plus, when your plant starts to flourish, you can easily divide its babies and give them to your friends and spread the joy. For more information about Aloe Vera plants, including growing and care instructions, visit Plant Well. 

Photo: Home Decorators

To add even MORE color to your dorm room, consider a Bromeliad. They're very easy to grow and the leaves will tell you the amount of light they need. The rule is simple: if your Bromeliad has a soft leaf, it will like soft light, and if the Bromeliad has a hard leaf, it will like hard light. For more growing tips, visit Bromeliads. Also, big box stores like Home Depot always seem to have them in stock and for a good price too. 

Photo: Wikipedia

I always have a Snake Plant or two in my house. That's because they're the second closest thing to a fake plant there is. They'll grow in any room that has any light. North, south, east, west, it doesn't matter. They tolerate even the lowest light conditions. They also seem perfectly happy to be watered infrequently. For more information about Snake Plant growing visit Gardening Know How. (P.S. They're also fun and easy to propagate.)

Photo: Buzzle

If the Snake Plant is the second closest to a fake plant there is, the ZZ Plant is the first closest. (They're also called "Eternity Plants" for that very reason.) The only reason I don't have one in my home is I haven't been able to find a specimen to my liking--namely, like the one picture above. Gorgeous. To read more about the ZZ Plant and its care, click here. 

Photo: Costa Farms

Chinese Evergreens come in several varieties, all of which are easy to grow. Their low to medium light requirements and low water needs coupled with showy variegated leaves make them perfect additions to dorm rooms. Plus, if the dorm room has enough light, they might even sprout a calla-lily-like flower or two. For more information about these lovely but indestructible plants, visit Costa Farms. 

Photo: Costa Farms

Sago Palms are beautiful but deadly. Because they are poisonous they should be kept out of the reach of pets and children, which would most likely be a non-issue a dorm room. (If it is, you have more pressing issues than plant selection.) But now that we have the disclaimer out of the way, Sago Palms are super-easy to grow. They'll thrive in any light and require medium to low watering. For more information about them, head back over to Costa Farms. 

Photo: Bonsai Outlet

The latest new plant species in my house is a Ponytail Plant--and I love it. How couldn't I? The name alone makes me happy, but throw in that big bulbous trunk and I'm all smiles. They're a slow-growing plant, so find one that has a pleasing size that will suit your needs. They tolerate indirect to direct light (mine is about a foot away from a north facing window, which it seems to love), and they require infrequent watering, thanks to that bulbous trunk, which stores water like a thermos. For more information on these delightful plants, visit Bonsai Outlet. (And, yes, they're perfect for Bonsai conditions.) 

Photo: 9GreenBox via Etsy 

Our last oh-so-easy house plant is a hybrid of sorts as it's as much plant as cut flowers--without the flowers. Why the strange mash up? That's because they're Lucky Bamboo. These practically indestructible plants would be a perfect gift to give the dorm-room-bound college student as all of them could use a little luck. The three plant arrangement pictured above is available at 9GreenBox Etsy's shop for about $13. You can also find individual stalks (for a dollar or two) at good flower shops for a DIY arrangement. To read more about the care and upkeep of Lucky Bamboo, click here

 

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