My feed

to access all these features


To want a houseplants that just bloody lives

228 replies

Purplerayhan · 22/02/2021 22:41

That's all. No matter how much I read the instructions and follow them, source from proper garden centres, read up on the best plants for the room THEY JUST KEEP ON DYING. Even a sodding cactus went to the great compost heapnin the sky. I see other people's rooms with lush plants and I'm jealous.
And yes, I do have other things to be thinking about. No, I don't have much of a life. Yes, I talk to them but th singing might have finished them off.
YABU - clearly you're the Harold Shipman of horticulture, suck it up
YANBU - they are bottomless pits of promise and money, get over your hatred of plastic flowers

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

221 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
Caspianberg · 23/02/2021 07:45

Money plant or snake plant. Both we moved into our new house, then accidentally left in room with shutters fully closed, and could t move in for 7 weeks.
So almost 2 months in pitch black with no water, they looked the same when we finally got back in!

Since then they have been left super wet, super dry, in hot, in cold, in sun or dark. Still alive

MaryIsA · 23/02/2021 07:58

You are probably overwatering, sad looking plants are usually overwatered.

Keep them away from radiators and very few house plants like a south facing window (cactus maybe).

Put in a pot with holes in the bottom, on a saucer or in another pot without holes. After watering

Generally speaking don’t water till the plastic pot inside feels really really light. Water then check it’s drained and isn’t sitting in water. Plants that are waterlogged can’t breathe. So in winter you might only be watering every 2 to 3 weeks.

If they do get waterlogged you can save them by brushing most of the compost off and replacing it.

Buddrinker84 · 23/02/2021 08:00

I don't touch the houseplants, my fingers are black but dh uses the rainwater from the water butt for all of ours and are all thriving. Along with enough light and no draughts. I think it's the rainwater rather than tapwater that helps.

olympicsrock · 23/02/2021 08:00

The issue is that you are putting your plants in a place with no light. The place you mention ( on cupboards in line with a north facing window is a dreadful place for plants to live. That is why they die.
Go for artificial if you desperately want to put plants there. Put your real plants somewhere else

LadyCounterblast · 23/02/2021 08:15

to plant-killing friends I give: peace lily, spider plant, monstera, ZZ plant (Zamioculcas zamiifolia), aspidistra, devil's ivy, sansevieria, and clivia. They pretty much all thrive on neglect.

You’ve pretty much described my plant repertoire there @Agapornis Grin

I’ve also got an alocasia which I’ve somehow managed to keep going (the one with the bronze leaf undersides, it’s very pretty).

My tactic seems to be watering them less than you’d think, and bottom-watering (ie letting them soak up water from the bath rather than use a watering can).

I also find the Planta app quite useful although it tends towards overwatering I’ve found.

bigbluebus · 23/02/2021 08:16

A friend once told me that she saw house plants as cut flowers that live a bit longer. That reduced my expectations of my plants!

Another friend was an absolute marvel with house plants. She had multiple huge specimens on every window sill. But she gave them lots of care and attention and repotted them when needed. Mine get a bit of water when I remember. I too have the problem of only North or South facing window sills.

SchrodingersImmigrant · 23/02/2021 08:25

Scindapsus. Bit of a masochist. Perfect plant😁
I have issue with overwatering plants or fforgetting for a month🙄 Of you are getting succulents get propper compost

ShulamithFirestone · 23/02/2021 08:28
To want a houseplants that just bloody lives
SagelyNodding · 23/02/2021 08:31

This year I have managed to kill a beautiful hibiscus, a cactus, about 10 pots of aloe Vera which I have had for years and I'm currently killing an unkillable pothos which I am fostering for a friend who is abroad this year!
I love houseplants so much but they really seem to hate me!
My plastic ikea fern looks great though Smile

LaurieSchafferIsAllBitterNow · 23/02/2021 08:32

my mother loves a house plant, she has them everywhere, I just cba with them

I do buy them and can keep them going for ages, but then somehow I forget about caring for them, and keep thinking "I must water that" and as every day goes by I think, "ahhhh it'll go another day...." and then one day it's crispy, brown and dead.

Killed a lovely spider plant doing that.

NotJosieGrosieAnymore · 23/02/2021 08:32

I’m shit at houseplants and my most recent ones are still alive after nearly a year! I can’t believe it.

They are:
1 Devil’s Ivy (pothos)
2 Heart leaf philodendron
4 Snakeplant or MILs tongue (sansiveria)
5 Cissus striata

They are ridiculously easy, look really nice and if I can do it anyone can. The Devil’s ivy is particularly rampant, don’t think I could kill it if I tried. Just read the basic care instructions and follow them, they should be fine.

NotJosieGrosieAnymore · 23/02/2021 08:36

Sorry forgot no.3 - assorted succulents! Neglect seems to work for them.

breatheslowandtrust · 23/02/2021 08:44

Overwatering is the main reason houseplants die, or buying heat loving plants (such as hibiscus) and expecting them to be happy in a North facing room.
You should only water a plant when the top two inches of soil is cometely dry. I'm good with houseplants but give me a fern and I'll guarantee it'll be dead in 3 months. Those buggers are so unbelievably needy.

BigSkyLife · 23/02/2021 08:45

@BlueThistles - we have one of those, bought as a straggly thing from a church fayre because DH felt sorry for it.
We now take great pleasure in taking cuttings and watching the little roots sprout over a couple of days.

breatheslowandtrust · 23/02/2021 08:45

Also is an online plant shop and they have them organized by easy, moderate, demanding.

LaurieSchafferIsAllBitterNow · 23/02/2021 08:54

forgot to mention supermarket herbs though....I have coriander, basil, parsley rosemary and mint, I can keep them going for MONTHS, the only reason they go in the bin is because I have used them and don't have time to wait for them to regrow

Current coriander has been on the go since early January

Laiste · 23/02/2021 09:07

My houseplant success fluctuates wildly!

I currently have a dragon tree which was about 6'' tall from IKEA about 5 years ago. I liked it little but it obvs likes what i do as it's now getting too big to be an 'on a shelf' plant and is now an 'on the floor' plant. Mid thigh height. (re-potted twice).

My orchids however - sigh - the more i try to do the right thing: transfer to clear pot, use proper granuals, use moss, use orchid feed - the more they do NOTHING. 2 years - nothing.

I once had a cheese plant which grew so huge i had to arrange the living room furniture according to giving the leaves enough space Grin It was up to the ceiling and the largest leaves were 2 foot across. I used to polish them Blush It even flowered for me! I had to give it away when i moved :(

Kamma89 · 23/02/2021 10:23

A really good watering tip is to sit pot in a bowl full of water. When the levels stop going down its had enough

purplebagladylovesgin · 23/02/2021 10:25

Aloe Vera, they just don't die! I now have 76....... they keep having babies.

Failing this get a decent quality artificial plant. It will cost more but all you have to do is wash it gently once a year. No one will know.

CSIblonde · 23/02/2021 10:37

You're over watering. Cactus are great, tiny bit of water once a week , sit not too far from daylight but not where it's going to fry in a spot that's sunny constantly. Same with orchids . They will lose their flower, but it does come back.

Tangledtresses · 23/02/2021 10:45

Most house plants hate central heating too...
I have a cheese plant and a peace Lilly in north facing hallway near the front door that are happy. I don't water very often.
Every 6 months I soak them in the sink with some feed.

ZaraW · 23/02/2021 10:47

Snake plants are indestructible so is my zz plant.

Needhelp101 · 23/02/2021 11:22

I love house plants and have loads. Agree with PPs that you're probably overwatering. I neglect mine shamefully!

LadyEloise · 23/02/2021 11:30

Apparently Jade plant and Mother in Laws Tongue are very easy to grow. I heard it on a gardening show.

cravingthelook · 23/02/2021 11:31

I too have a peace Lily that survives anything and a 5 foot parlour palm and a 4 foot dragon tree in the bedroom. I put these in the shower once a fortnight to water them and wheel then into the sunlight now and then...

Can't keep a Boston fern alive though- dunno why.

To want a houseplants that just bloody lives
Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.