How to Save Water With Low Maintenance House Plants

October 18, 2012 by


Euphorbia Obesa, a succulent. Photo: Robin Plaskoff Horton, Urban Gardens

Water conservation is a concern for many plant lovers. You may already be using rainwater in your garden, but what about your house plants? Indoor plants can often require a great deal of water, which is not only time-consuming, but very uneconomical. This doesn’t however mean you have to go without; there are plenty of house plants that don’t require much water and are very low maintenance.

For really low maintenance plants, opt for ones that come from hot and dry countries such as aloe vera or cacti. These make fantastic indoor plants as visually they are very striking, yet take hardly any effort to maintain. These plants originate from countries such as South Africa or Australia and as a result are used to climates with little moisture. This type of plant requires lots of light but won’t be affected by temperature. They are used to desert-like conditions ranging from incredibly hot to below freezing.

Cacti only need watering in the summer months when they are growing. They require almost no water at all during winter and only need a bit of moisture if they start to wilt or shrivel. The most common cause of death for cacti is overwatering, making it a very low maintenance house plant for conserving water.

Aloe vera is another fantastic desert plant, which is not only low maintenance but looks striking in the home with its distinctive spiky leaves. Like a cactus, aloe vera only requires minimal watering in the winter and prefers a dry, sandy soil.  This type of plant needs natural light but avoid placing it in direct sunlight.

It’s no coincidence that the spider plant is a common house plant.  A firm favorite for many households, the spider plant is very easy to take care of and only requires watering every few weeks. In between watering this plant, the soil can be left to go dry – a great excuse if you often forget to water your plants! Spider plants prefer natural light, but avoid putting them in direct sunlight as this could cause the leaves to turn brown.

Of course, if you have the luxury of a water collection system, watering your house plants with rain water is a fantastic means of water conservation. In addition, chlorine and mineral content in tap water varies widely across the geographical areas and traces of these can affect sensitive plants.

Caring for your house plants doesn’t have to be difficult. You just need to be aware of what light, watering and soil they require. They are a great way of livening up your home with some greenery and even though most are inexpensive, they still become a valuable part of your home.

This sponsored post was contributed by Fran Swaine for Sainsbury’s Bank. While you’re looking after your home, you may also want to consider reviewing your home insurance policy.

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