These Are Bobby Berk’s Favorite Low-Maintenance Houseplants

published Jul 11, 2021
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Credit: Photo: Getty Images; Design: Apartment Therapy

When he’s not changing lives on Netflix’s hit “Queer Eye” or designing a super sleek furniture collection, interior design expert Bobby Berk loves to dish out the decor advice. Whether it’s double-duty item recommendations, sleep tips, or even Animal Crossing decorating advice, Berk often shares his tips and tricks on how to live a better life at home.

This week, Berk has been dishing out the plant parenting advice on lifestyle and design site,

“Having a green thumb doesn’t come naturally to all of us,” Berk wrote in the post. “But even if you think you’re not cut out to be a plant parent, there are still options for adding some life.”

In the article, Berk shared his favorite low-maintenance plants—the “absolute minimum level of maintenance”—that can be considered fool-proof foliage for anyone, from the newbies to the more experienced plant parents among us.

Below are the Berk-approved houseplants that will thrive with even the tiniest bit of maintenance.

Credit: TYNZA / Shutterstock

Spider Plants

Despite their creepy-crawly name, spider plants are actually one of the most popular houseplants. “Unfussy about light, they will tolerate anything from partial shade to bright sun,” Berk wrote. “Water once a week, and allow the soil to completely dry in between.”

Spider plants are fast-growing and they tend to produce lots of little baby plants over the span of their lifetime, meaning you can repot and regrow as desired, getting more for your money.

Buy: Spider Plant, $36.00 $20

Credit: The Sill

Bird’s Nest Fern Plant

From the side of a tree to the rainforest floor, Bird’s Nest Fern Plants grow and thrive just about anywhere. The long crinkly leaves emerge from a brown rosette in the center, and this impressive plant will add a tropical vibe to your home.

“The most work you’ll have to give this plant is water every 1-2 weeks and the occasional spritz to keep it moist,” wrote Berk, “Just place in indirect light of any level, and it will be fit to thrive.”

Buy: Birds Nest Leslie Fern (Asplenium nidus) Plant in 4 in. Grower Pot, $13.98

Credit: The Sill

Pothos Plant

Pothos plants have some serious staying power. They’re not fussy about needing light, and one watering a week will do just fine. They don’t even have to be planted in soil; they do very well placed in a container with water. Even better, Pothos plants good for you. “The pothos also happens to be one exceptional air purifier,” Berk explains in his post.

When it comes to the environment, Berk recommends “a slightly humid environment like a bathroom or kitchen”.

Note: Pothos plants are not pet-friendly.

Buy: Golden Pothos 6 in. Grower Pot, $16.65

Credit: Aquarius Studio/

Snake Plants

Snake plants love to be left alone. They’re a great option for forgetful plant parents as they only need watering every 2-3 weeks. They’ll also thrive in any condition you throw at them: bright conservatory, dark bathroom, bedroom corner. You name it, Sansevieria plants love it. Note: snake plants are not pet-friendly.

Buy: Sansevieria Snake Plant in 6 in. Growers Pot, $23.98

Credit: Stephanie Pomerenke/

ZZ Plant

A ZZ plant, or Zanzibar Gem, is the pinnacle of low maintenance. This slow grower is a native of Western Africa and is resilient in all levels of light (just be careful to avoid super bright direct sunlight).

“They only require water every 2-3 weeks,” notes Berk. ” And as a drought-tolerant species, even if you forget to water it for a month, the ZZ will still spring back to life.”

One thing to note is that, although the ASPCA doesn’t have an entry about ZZ plant toxicity, other sources indicate that it’s likely poisonous to dogs and cats.

Buy: Costa Farms ZZ Zamioculcas Zamiifolia, Indoor Plant, 12-Inch Tall, White-Natural Décor Planter, $28.99

Credit: Cheng Wei/

Heartleaf Philodendron Plant

There’s lots to love about the Heartleaf Philodendron plant. Not only do they look great, adding a jungle-esque vibe to your space, but they’re also well-known for their ability to filter gaseous toxins from the air. The leaves grow downwards, so they’re ideal for hanging planters or placed on a shelf so they can trail.

“Whether in bright or indirect light, this plant will make do,” wrote Berk. “Water every one to two weeks, sit back, and this philodendron will flourish.”

Note: Heartleaf Philodendrons are not pet-friendly.

Buy: LIVE Green Philodendron Heartleaf or Philodendron Hederaceum Vine Plant in 6″ Growers Pot, $47.88