Easy houseplants for bad plant parents

Easy houseplants to make your uni room a little greener!

Hannah Ross
22nd February 2022
Image from Unsplash @vadimkaipov

Tradescantia Zebrina 

Tradescantia Zebrina. Image from Unsplash @Daniela Paola Alchapar

Honestly if anyone manages to kill this plant, they will have my respect because that is impressive – believe me, I've tried! These guys are a great starter plant for anybody as they tend to live off their own accord, swirling into whatever space you can give them, no matter how cramped. They are very happy either to chill in very wet soil for those who love them a little too much or spend their days in the arid desert that is their pot that you haven't watered for two weeks! They can be as viny or bushy as you like: either let them grow continuously or cut a good 20-30cm off them and stick it in a glass of water for a few weeks – the roots will develop rapidly, and you can replant them, or they make a great economic birthday pressie for anyone on a tight budget (as we all are with our student debt) due to their unique appearance with purple and green stripy leaves! 

Snake Plant 

Image from Unsplash @noyocreatif

These bad boys are a super-fun plant to keep and don’t require excessive amounts of sunlight which is, let's face it, great when living in Newcastle! Just be prepared to upgrade its living space every year because they get BIG. Again, another plant that doesn't require too much watering – I tend to find once a week keeps them happy and healthy but they will also be okay if left for a couple of weeks during the holidays when you're wanting to travel home. They are constantly growing new sword-like leaves and enjoy having a little flower in the Summer when they get older. Eventually, these can become floor-standing plants and so can be nurtured into a lovely decoration for each new house you move into. 

The most important point to stress is never repot a plant in winter as this stresses them out and can be an ultimate downfall in plant care! 


Kalanchoe. Image from Instagram @doncactusbsas

If you're someone who likes a little colour to brighten up the place, look no further than the kalanchoe family. I tend to find that most flowering plants tend to be a little fussy and therefore difficult to look after when you can't think about them every day. A kalanchoe is a great solution to this as they are classed as succulents so prefer a much drier environment and indirect sunlight. They also come in a wide variety of colours, so it is easy to find one that fits the colour scheme of your room! Again, these plants are fine taking a little regret and can be left for a few weeks at a time, if necessary, though they may look a little sad after so make sure to give it plenty of water after such a period. 

Regarding general tips for care, keep plants in a well-lit area and away from radiators if possible. If you have a south-facing window, even better as this gets plenty of sunlight! Feeling the soil tends to be a good indicator of if they need watering. The most important point to stress is never repot a plant in winter as this stresses them out and can be an ultimate downfall in plant care! 

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