skip to Main Content

Stylish Houseplants For The Novice Gardener (and how to care for them!)

Part of my interior design services for my Sunshine Coast clients include furniture and styling suggestions, often with plants! I truly believe that every room can be enhanced by a pop of greenery. However, when I press my clients to actually incorporate my planting suggestions throughout their brand new space, they sometimes confess they lack the skills and knowledge to care for them! I have therefore curated this list of my favourite houseplants that are not only low-care, but also look fabulous and suit our coastal/ contemporary-style new homes and renovations here on the Sunshine Coast.

If in doubt, underwater these low maintenance plants instead of overwater- you’ll be able to tell if they’re slowing drowning if the leaves are turning yellow. Simply pot these beauties in the correct soil type, pop it in your favourite pretty pot planter and watch your room come to life!

 

Zanzibar Gem (Zamioculcas zamiifolia)

Sunshine Coast Interior Design

Image: stylemepretty.com

The Zanzibar gem is one of the best plants for a clueless black thumb who kills plants on sight  a gardening novice. The Zee Zee plant as it is affectionately known will happily live in just about any light conditions it finds itself in. The ZZ thrives on the ‘less is more’ approach- just water him when the soil is almost completely dry (about once every 2-4 weeks) and forget about him. This little gem produces a leaf so shiny you might mistake it for a plastic plant. A beautiful, tropical and durable little plant for your new home!

Soil type: All-purpose potting soil

Light requirements: Low, medium or bright indirect light.

Water: Approx every 2-4 weeks. Or less!

Interior style match: British Colonial, Contemporary, Coastal, Urban

 

Pothos (Epipremnum aureum)

Sunshine Coast Interior Designer

Image: balconygardenweb

 

Pothos is a fast-growing, low-care little vine. Their heart-shaped leaves look gorgeous trailing down over a floating shelf. They are super easy-going and have many benefits: they are practically impossible to kill, they can grow in water, or in a dark corner, they increase air humidity (perfect for the dry winter months), they purify the air, they grow easily from cuttings so you create more plants for your friends, and they bring good feng shui.

Soil type: Well-draining potting mix OR a vase of water!

Light requirements: Low to medium indirect light.

Water: Approximately once a week.

Interior Style: Bathrooms, floating shelves, mantles, home office, overhead open kitchen cabinetry

 

Bird Of Paradise (Strelitzia reginae)

Lana’s home features a sculptural Bird Of Paradise to contrast against the Mediterranean white base.

Image: threebirdsrenovations

 

These plants with their fan-like display of large tropical leaves add glamour and sophistication to an interior. If you have the space, they look amazing in a matching pair of pots on either side of an entry or foyer for example. Grown inside they won’t produce flowers or reach their typical height as when grown outdoors, but will still reach heights between three and eight foot for a lush, classy display.

Soil type: Well-draining potting mix

Light requirements: Bright, indirect or direct light.

Water: Approximately once a week, allow the top few inches of soil to dry between waterings.

Interior Style: Hamptons, British Colonial, Coastal, Contemporary, Glamourous

Snake Plant (Sansevieria zeylanica)

Sunshine Coast Interior Designer

 

Also called Mother in laws tongue for its spiked leaves, the profile of the leaves are almost architectural work of art. this is another extremely low-care plant. It throws nostalgic seventies vibes and if at first you don’t love the look at this plant, as with all houseplants the pot planter its in can make a big difference.

Soil type: Well-draining cactus or succulent mix

Light requirements: Low to bright indirect.

Water: Only when its completely dry, once a month or less

Interior Style: Palm Springs, Retro, Coastal, Contemporary

 

Fiddle Leaf Fig (Ficus lyrata)

Sunshine Coast Renovation Design

Image: vogueliving

I had to include the FLF. Although they’re medium-maintenance, their large leaves atop their slender trunks add so much lushness and elegance to a room. The FLF is a rainforest plant and it typically grows under the tree canopy so it thrives in warmth and lots of bright, indirect light. Too much direct sun and the leaves might sunburn. Occasionally take it outside for a hose down or, when its mature, give the leaves a dust with a damp cloth as dust build up will mean its can’t absorb light and nutrients through the leaves. Even though this plant sounds fussier than a toddler at dinnertime, I urge you to give one a go, they look fabulous inside!

 

Soil type: High quality, well-draining potting mix

Light requirements: Bright, indirect light.

Water: Approximately once or twice a month give it a thorough, deep watering then allow to dry.

Interior Style: Coastal, Contemporary, Hamptons, Glamorous, French Provincial

 

Houseplant Hacks for the Black Thumbs:

Ok, I hear you. You just can’t keep plants alive/ you go camping often/ your toddler eats dirt. If you really don’t want to get onboard the plant wagon, there are creative ways to get the lush look of houseplants without the maintenance. A beautiful white orchid with its elegant, architectural form is one my favourite ways to style a room. High quality artificial orchids are available from many retailers, some of my favorites are Freedom, Plantbox and Temple & Webster. You can also buy a real orchid, then when the flowering season is over, insert an artificial flower stem into the mossy base amongst the real, glossy leaves until it flowers again.

A simple arrangement of fresh leaves from the garden in a beautiful vase is another way to create an eye-catching display, plus you can change it up regularly. I always use fresh water to keep them alive and happy for longer, plus the weight of the water ensures the top-heavy vase doesn’t topple over in a strong wind.

If you love these ideas, follow me on Pinterest, I have lots of beautiful interior design inspiration daily! Or if you want some help styling your home, get in touch, Coco Interiors offers styling packages + services 🙂

Sophie x

Back To Top