5 Houseplants We Love

1. Fiddle Leaf Figs

Why we love them: This stylish indoor tree is actually a kind of ficus. It has large, dark-green leaves that seem to be on the pages of every design magazine we've opened lately. 

How to care for them: Fiddle Leaf Figs can live outdoors in Brisbane, but inside they like exposure to medium-bright light. The surface of the soil should dry out slightly between waterings and their 'feet' don't mind soaking up a bit of extra water from their tray. If the fig starts to look a bit pale, try moving it somewhere less bright.

2. Mother In Law's Tongue

Why we love it: It doesn't get much easier than this indoor house plant. It has variegated leaves that grow upright, and some varieties' leaves have yellow or white edges. If you're lucky you'll see it flower with small white blooms, but this only happens rarely.

How to care for it: This indoor plant grows well in a whole range of lighting conditions. The air should be somewhat dry, as should the soil. Any normal room temperature will suit it just fine.


3. Succulents

Why we love them: Succulents are beautiful in their geometry, offering thick, lush leaves and visually interesting branches. They tend to be slow growing and have the potential to last for many years. They look great in pots grouped with different varieties. 

How to care for them: Succulents don't require a lot of water, so keep soil somewhat dry. They do need bright, direct light, so it's best to keep them near your sunniest windows. For information on propagating succulents, check out this post from The Spring Blog's back pages. 

4. Split Leaf Philodendron (aka Monstera Deliciosa)

Why we love them: The Split Leafed Philodendron is known for its tropical oversized leaves with what appears to be cuts within them - it's also known as the Swiss cheese plant. This is a low maintenance house plant that grows wild in parks and nature strips around Brisbane. (I'm working on the best strategy for propagating my own.) These plants tend to grow quite large, so it's probably not the best choice for tiny apartments. Due to its oversized foliage and the ability to grow in large proportions, you may need to stake the stems.

How to care for them: The Split Leaf Philodendron prefers medium lighting, so it is best to keep this plant located within 1 - 2m of a window. Do be careful when choosing the location because once you've placed it somewhere it doesn't  like to be moved. (It disturbed where it's happy this plant may drop its leaves in revolt.) Also, if the light level is to low, the leaves will not develop their unique perforations.The Split Leaf Philodendron requires moderate watering. Water thoroughly once every 7 to 10 days. Most don't seem to mind being dry once in a while either.

5. Pothos

Why we love it: First of all, this indoor plant grows trailing stems and works well in a hanging basket or as a climbing plant. You can train them onto a trellis, around a shower stall, or across whatever object you like that'll support it. Pothos also.has an air-purifying quality that can absorb and strip toxins like formaldehyde from materials in your home. 

How to care for it: This indoor house plant can thrive in an array of lighting conditions, but low light may diminish the leaves' variegation. Allow soil to dry somewhat between watering. When the stems get too long, just cut them back and your plant will continue to look full and healthy. The cuttings can live in water for weeks and weeks. 

images via The Spring Blog on Pinterest

Catherine Roberts