Work Hard, Plant Hard

Easy (slightly harder to find) Housplants

Christine K

We’ve seen top 10 houseplant lists everywhere. Pothos, Sansevieria, Dracena to name a few. These plants are easy because they can handle various lighting conditions and some neglect. I’ve been collecting houseplants for a while now so I thought I’d share a slightly different list – plants I’ve found to be super easy but harder to come by, in no particular order. Read the captions to find out my sources!

1)   Rhaphidophora tetrasperma. Also known as a “fake monstera.” Gorgeous tropical plant that grows like crazy – keep in mind you need room for it! This plant loves bright indirect light and slightly moist very well draining potting mix.

 On the right is my Rhaphidophora tetrasperma. A vigorous growing, forgiving plant. Not to mention a beauty! I got my RT from @stevesleavesinc. I was lucky I happened to be online when they posted a few available and I snatched one! It’s at least doubled in size and is quickly outgrowing its taller stake. Aside from Steve’s Leaves you might check NSE Tropicals (@nsetropicals) and plant swap sites like Facebook.

On the right is my Rhaphidophora tetrasperma. A vigorous growing, forgiving plant. Not to mention a beauty! I got my RT from @stevesleavesinc. I was lucky I happened to be online when they posted a few available and I snatched one! It’s at least doubled in size and is quickly outgrowing its taller stake. Aside from Steve’s Leaves you might check NSE Tropicals (@nsetropicals) and plant swap sites like Facebook.

2)   Pothos “cebu blue.” Such a gorgeous variety of Epipremnium aureum. I grew this one from cuttings that came from across the country and within months was already propagating more.

 Pothos cebu blue. I got cuttings from an IG plant friend and they are doing incredibly well in moderate light.

Pothos cebu blue. I got cuttings from an IG plant friend and they are doing incredibly well in moderate light.

3)   Monstera stiltepecana. Another one I grew from cuttings – easy to propagate and it did really well with the transfer. The leaves are captivating with their deep veins.

 The right middle shelf shows my Monstera stiltepecana. It’s grown several new leaves even since this photo was taken. Even better, it was started from cuttings via an IG plant pal. I know Steve’s Leaves @stevesleavesinc gets them in periodically. Hint - turn on post notifications for Steve’s!

The right middle shelf shows my Monstera stiltepecana. It’s grown several new leaves even since this photo was taken. Even better, it was started from cuttings via an IG plant pal. I know Steve’s Leaves @stevesleavesinc gets them in periodically. Hint - turn on post notifications for Steve’s!

4)   Rhipsalis. One of my all-time favorites. There are so many varieties – they are all easy as long as you give them lots of bright light. They can handle some direct sun. Let the soil dry between watering.

 To the right is a Rhipsalis species. I grab one any time I see one I don’t have! They are super easy if you give them tons of sun (indoors. Outdoors they need a bit of shade.). They rarely need water (wait until soil is completely dry). I got this one from Piep (@piep.co).

To the right is a Rhipsalis species. I grab one any time I see one I don’t have! They are super easy if you give them tons of sun (indoors. Outdoors they need a bit of shade.). They rarely need water (wait until soil is completely dry). I got this one from Piep (@piep.co).

5)   Pilea peperomioides. Happy foliage and lots of character. They even have babies that you can give your friends. Also known as the “friendship plant.” Give them bright light and try not to let the soil dry between watering. But if you do, don’t worry they’re fairly resilient! And thankfully somewhat easier to come by these days.

 Pilea peperomioides “the friendship plant.” I got my first Pilea from Piep (@piep.co) and another from Armstrong’s Nursery. They’ve even been spotted at some Trader Joe’s recently. I’ve given away many babies.

Pilea peperomioides “the friendship plant.” I got my first Pilea from Piep (@piep.co) and another from Armstrong’s Nursery. They’ve even been spotted at some Trader Joe’s recently. I’ve given away many babies.

6)   Hoya obovata. I’m a huge Hoya fan. They are semi-succulents so they appreciate lots of light, can handle some direct light, and dry soil between watering. I love the splashes of white on the Obovata leaves and the growth pattern is stunning.

 I keep my Obovata close to a west window. They can handle some direct light. I had it in moderate light for a plant style event. It was over-watered by well-meaning people and fungus grew on the soil fairly quickly. Best to let the soil dry out first! I got my Obovata from Walter Anderson’s Nursery in Poway. I have seen them at various sites online.

I keep my Obovata close to a west window. They can handle some direct light. I had it in moderate light for a plant style event. It was over-watered by well-meaning people and fungus grew on the soil fairly quickly. Best to let the soil dry out first! I got my Obovata from Walter Anderson’s Nursery in Poway. I have seen them at various sites online.

7)  Philodendron micans. The deep velvety leaves on this one speak for themselves. This is a trailing plant and mine is still fairly young.

 A young Philodendron micans. These are trailing plants with beautiful velvety leaves. They can tolerate slightly more moderate light but will not grow as quickly. I got my micans from @landofalicestudio, an independent seller on Etsy from Florida.

A young Philodendron micans. These are trailing plants with beautiful velvety leaves. They can tolerate slightly more moderate light but will not grow as quickly. I got my micans from @landofalicestudio, an independent seller on Etsy from Florida.

8)   Hoya kerrii. Their beautiful heart-shaped leaves are captivating. Give these lots and lots of light and let soil completely dry between watering.

 On the left is my Hoya kerrii “splash.” You can see the variegated version below it, and they also come in a more solid leaf type. I got my larger one at Piep in Riverside (@piep.co). I got my variegated one in a plant trade for a Hoya bella (like the one on the bottom right). The Succulent Cafe in Carlsbad is another great source for Hoya, including kerrii and bella. You can try to hunt them down online or via plant swaps as well.

On the left is my Hoya kerrii “splash.” You can see the variegated version below it, and they also come in a more solid leaf type. I got my larger one at Piep in Riverside (@piep.co). I got my variegated one in a plant trade for a Hoya bella (like the one on the bottom right). The Succulent Cafe in Carlsbad is another great source for Hoya, including kerrii and bella. You can try to hunt them down online or via plant swaps as well.

9)   Philodendron erubescens “pink princess.” Need I say more?

 I got my erubescens at Rolling Greens in Los Angeles. It was a HUGE plant and I separated it and gave 3 large cuttings to plant friends. The best feeling! I’ve found this one can handle slightly less than bright light, though of course won’t grow as quickly. They grow well from cuttings if you can track some down!

I got my erubescens at Rolling Greens in Los Angeles. It was a HUGE plant and I separated it and gave 3 large cuttings to plant friends. The best feeling! I’ve found this one can handle slightly less than bright light, though of course won’t grow as quickly. They grow well from cuttings if you can track some down!

10) Sansevieria masoniana “whale fin.” These are such sculptural plants and can handle slightly lower lighting conditions. One of my all-time favorite Sansevierias! There are so many varieties of Sansevierias I encourage you to explore them if you haven’t already.

 On the bottom left is one of my Sansevieria masonianas. They can tolerate lower light though be careful to rarely water if they are not getting a lot of light. I got this one at Andersons La Costa, a local nursery. If you scroll through my Instagram highlights, you can see the story of how it came to be. I separated a large plant and this one has offspring all over the country. I’ve also seen them at Walter Anderson’s and Barrels and Branches if you are local to the San Diego area.

On the bottom left is one of my Sansevieria masonianas. They can tolerate lower light though be careful to rarely water if they are not getting a lot of light. I got this one at Andersons La Costa, a local nursery. If you scroll through my Instagram highlights, you can see the story of how it came to be. I separated a large plant and this one has offspring all over the country. I’ve also seen them at Walter Anderson’s and Barrels and Branches if you are local to the San Diego area.

Bonus: Monstera adansonii. This is one of my very favorites for its gorgeous foliage and beautiful growth pattern. It tolerates slightly less than bright light. Don’t let the soil dry between watering. Very easy to propagate in water.

 One of my Monstera adansonii. I absolutely love the foliage and they’ve been super easy to care for. I have given away plenty of cuttings as well. They are very easy to water propagate! I got this one from Anderson’s La Costa Nursery in Encinitas. I’ve seen them online for example NSE Tropicals @nsetropicals.

One of my Monstera adansonii. I absolutely love the foliage and they’ve been super easy to care for. I have given away plenty of cuttings as well. They are very easy to water propagate! I got this one from Anderson’s La Costa Nursery in Encinitas. I’ve seen them online for example NSE Tropicals @nsetropicals.

It was very hard to select just 10 (so I added a bonus! :)), but these are some of the most forgiving, easy to grow slightly rarer plants I’ve had the pleasure of caring for. Hope you enjoyed!