Our little green friends are a wonderful way to bring life and colour into your home or office while providing your body with clean air and uplifting the spirit. Whether you want to "green up" that tiny bit of space at the edge of your desk or you're looking to turn your living room into a jungle, we've compiled a list of plants that fit your every need. Some love the attention, some are strong and independent (don't need much water) and some just sting. Ouch, that hurt me as well!
When we first moved into our beautiful little attic apartment in Amsterdam, we didn't even have a kitchen, we hadn't bought a sofa or a table and pretty much all of our things were still in boxes. Sure, you could argue that having a kitchen, a table or chairs to sit on are of higher importance than having a plant, but I'm not sure I agree. That's why one of the first things we brought into the house was Coco and I know, Coco might not be the most innovative name for a coconut plant but she totally introduced her self as Coco so what could we have done?!
We love plants, we wish we could have them all, prickly, tall, tiny or hungry, but plants, even the strongest ones out there, still need your love and attention and most importantly water. When you're travelling as much as we do, it can be quite difficult and pretty sad to leave them behind every time and to be fair, they're not the easiest to travel with. So instead of buying and filling our house with them all, we made this list, so you can do it instead. I've also included a couple of links on where you can buy them from (if you live in the Netherlands).
I've picked and categorised some of my favourite plants you can find easily, in order to make your plant parenthood as easy as possible.
A breath of fresh air
These green beings of love will purify your air and fill your lungs with pure oxygen.
Devil’s Ivy or pothos (Epipremnum aureum)
This scary sounding but very helpful friend is quite possibly the one plant you should have if you had to only pick one. It comes in small, medium and big, it will grow if you let it (by putting it into bigger pots) and it can be placed on a table, a shelf or it can be hanged up. It's one of those plants that is literally harder to kill than to keep alive so if you're not ready to be a plant-parent yet but you really, really want to plant up your space, then this is the one for you.
Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
🎵Spider Plant! Spider Plant!
Does whatever a Spider Plant does
Can he purify your air?
Sure he can, he's a plant
He is the Spider Plant🎵
This plant is a must for all you animal lovers as it's one of the plants out there that's non toxic for animals. It loves to eat up all the carbon monoxide and turn it into clean fresh oxygen and on top of that it's great for plant newbies. It fits perfectly in your living room or bedroom and as a bonus tip, you can replant the small "spiderettes" that grow next to it creating a family of air purifying treasures. Its funky looks will definitely brighten up your space and mood.
Rubber fig (Ficus elastica)
This gorgeous, thick leaved, green friend is one of my favourites out there. I'm a sucker for plants that have deep greens and grow tall without taking up too much space and time. You'll most likely buy this plant while it's still quite small but it can grow stunning and tall if you let it. It's perfect for that empty corner of your living room that just doesn't fit anything else and it will make any space look cozy and beautiful. It's as strong as it looks, its chunky leaves are great at breaking down airborne chemicals and they can kill bacteria and mould spores that might be flying around your space.
Chinese evergreens (Aglaonema)
Tropical friends like this powerful cleanser are easy to find in your nearby store and it's often overlooked for that reason, but don't be mistaken. Having a tropical background means it thrives in humid and darker spaces so it's ideal for your bathroom and what's best about that is its ability to destroy formaldehyde and benzene, chemicals usually found in detergents and cosmetics. A must if you have the space in your bathroom for it.
Looking good is what I do best
From short to tall, wide, to teeny tiny and smooth to prickly, these green or colourful friends are just a dream to look at.
Prayer plant (Maranta leuconeura)
Oh my love, this plant is simply one of the most beautiful plants out there. I'm ever so slightly bias with this as it's one of the first plants I owned and I absolutely adore it. Its colours, the lines and patterns on its leaves, the most astonishing little flowers that pop out of nowhere make this plant my top recommendation for a plant to set on your living room shelf, table or counter top and make sure people see it as soon as entering your space. It's surprisingly strong as well as not needing much care but if you're anything like me you'll want to give it all of your attention. It will brighten up your space and mood just by being there.
There's no photo that makes it justice but here's one anyway.
What is there to be said about this extremely powerful yet drop down gorgeous plant?
Not only does it bring a sense of calmness in the space but it's also an impressive healer and it just looks so darn good. It's so easy to take care of, requiring tiny amounts of water and if placed in a big pot it can grow, oh how big and beautiful it can become. Once you have it you'll never want to do with out one. I know it may seem cruel to cut it, but if you take good care of it and let it grow enough, you can cut off some of its older, bigger leaves and use it to make creams. Also if you burn yourself, aloe is the best solution so cut of a piece slice it in half and place it directly on the burn, it will heal it up fast!
Peacock plant (Calathea makoyana)
One more of my favourite plants and one that we've proudly placed opposite our bed so we can feast on its beauty each morning we wake up. It's a very beautiful plant, with wonderful patterns and leaves and for that it needs a tiny bit more attention than the rest. It loves humidity so it enjoys being sprayed with lukewarm water and enjoys pebbles.
BONUS TIP: Pebbles once dunked in water first can hold humidity for quite a while so they're great to place next to plants that need more humidity.
Pincushion cactus (Mammillaria crinita)
I couldn't make this list without a prickly little friend in it as I absolutely love cacti. They might sting a bit if you touch them but stay away and they will uplift your mood and bring life into the tiniest spaces of your house. This is one of my favourites as with enough sunlight it will bloom these stunning pink or white flowers that make having a friend with spines totally worth it.
If you live in The Netherlands I recommend you check out www.plantsome.nl as they have a very straightforward guide to buying the right plant for you and their prices are awesome.
If you live in Amsterdam I highly suggest you pass by Wildernis on Bilderdijkstraat where you can also sit and enjoy a coffee while choosing your perfect green companion.
Plants are an easy and beautiful way to bring life, colour and fresh air into your space as well as being great friends, not very talkative but extremely good listeners. Whether you're looking to purchase your first plant or to take your plant-parenthood to the next level there's something perfect for you out there, so go ahead and fill up that space with life!
Love & Joy,