Melissa proof houseplants needed

bev2009(6 IN)June 28, 2011

My daughter is sitting her as I surf "Butterfly Gardens" and "Cottage Gardens" and she asked me what are some houseplants that no one can kill...since she kills all her houseplants...quickly. So I decided to pop in here and ask your advice for her. Thanks for your help.

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I have a variegated philodendron.. I found it in a dumpster, and overwatered it for at least two years (the saucer was CONSTANTLY full of water) dropped it several times, kept it on top of the fridge where it got almost no sunlight...
it survived, and even grew until it was touching the floor. Then half of it got broken off and I stuck that in the pot and it grew too.
This thing is bombproof.

Also, lucky bamboo. I don't know how you would even kill that stuff without trying.

Wandering Jew might be good too.

She knows plants need sunlight, right? Might be good to remind her.. and to wait until the top of the soil feels dry before watering..
those are the two major things that would probably help her. (Unless she gets a philodendron like mine, lol..)

    Bookmark   June 28, 2011 at 11:41PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

Spider plants are very forgiving. It would also be hard to kill ivy (Hedera helix.)

    Bookmark   June 29, 2011 at 9:36AM
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I'd go with spider plants and it would be fun for her to learn to propagate the babies.

I'm surprised someone is recommending Ivy. That is my most difficult plant.


    Bookmark   June 29, 2011 at 9:45AM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

I'd suggest Pothos or Epipremnum. Takes medium light & unless overwatered is quite difficult to kill.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2011 at 11:12AM
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Hellow Bev. The only real plant that can't be killed is artificial..:)

The posters above gave great examples, but truthfully all plants can be killed, including Cactus.

There's much to consider.
How much light, which direction windows, does your daughters home have?
Is there a certain shape she's looking for? Upright, hanging, tree-shape?
How much work/time would she spend with her plants?
Does she have children/pets?

The reason I asked about children/pets is many plants are toxic. Toni

    Bookmark   June 29, 2011 at 11:55AM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hey Bev,

Why not spend some time finding out EXACTLY WHAT SHE DOES TO THE PLANTS since you seem to feel she kills them all.

I'm guessing it's her treatment of the plants rather than the type of plants which is the actual problem.

Without learning what she's doing wrong, it's unlikely it'll stop.

Examples: If she were watering her plants w/ just boiled water, that would kill virtually everything. If she were watering every other day, that would likely kill them also.

I'd suggest some questions &/or investigation are in order.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2011 at 12:45PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Pirate girl, I totally agree with you! I don't think that I would recommend any live plant to someone who readily admits to killing "all of her houseplants".

Bev, tell your daughter to come and 'talk to us' about her plant care habits and maybe we can set her down the right road.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2011 at 2:51PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

That's right Bev, Rhizo & I'll set 'er straight right Rhizo?? ;>)

    Bookmark   June 29, 2011 at 4:09PM
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I second Susan, ivy is one of the only things I've killed so far, lol.

And if you give her a spider plant be sure she doesn't water it too much, I actually rotted the roots on one because it was in a container with something that likes more water, even though I didn't think I was watering it THAT much.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2011 at 12:59AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

Was the "can't be killed" thing meant literally...? I assumed Melissa is a kid who just needs some coaching and tougher plants to learn with. Sorry.

Forgot "cast iron" plant - Aspidistra. Maybe an air fern?

If overwatering is the culprit, maybe suggest checking them daily for wilt before watering? Or just get some plants that like to be moist? Peace lily, palm, bamboo.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2011 at 11:13AM
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