Published on May 10, 2019

03162018_AB_MarthaPorterHT_025_Photo_by_AaronBengochea Pin It
photography by aaron bengochea

I love plants, but they don’t always love me. I have killed many from time to time, either through overwatering (or, as I like to call it: killing with kindness) or a bit of neglect. For this reason, I set price restrictions on how much I’ll allow myself to spend on a plant. Until I can financially handle the loss of a $100 plant—or my horticultural skills improve—I get my greenery for $50 or less. And I get it on Amazon.

Now, I’ve picked up my fair share of plants at farmers market stands and at the many plant shops in my Brooklyn neighborhood, but time and time again, I’ve turned to Amazon to satisfy a very distinct plant need that, otherwise, can be quite expensive. When it comes to big plants in particular—from peace lilies to snake plants—the site has never led me astray.

I’ve bought a wide variety of large (at least three-foot-tall) plants on Amazon, and each arrived neatly, in good health, and hearty enough to last—at least until my skills fail me and I find myself needing to replace the plant I’ve eventually killed. One areca palm lasted nearly a year, while a peace lily made out well for at least 9 months. A rubber plant fared all right for six months at minimum, and my current snake plant is still going strong after a month.

With prices all between $30 and $50, I can’t complain about replacing them once or twice in a year and as I mature further into my plant parenthood, I can’t help but notice that each plant I order seems to do just a bit better under my care than the previous one. When you’re trying to get yourself a green thumb, sometimes the best thing to do is to try and try and try again. For me, a positive attitude and a Prime account have made all the difference. Shop my favorite Amazon plants below.

If you’re really a beginner

You can’t go wrong with a pothos. Seriously, these easy-to-grow plants are nearly impossible to kill. Place ’em near a window so they can drink up plenty of sunlight.

If you have a decent number of windows

A rubber tree makes for a dramatic houseplant. Just don’t do as I did and overwater it. Its soil should try out completely between waterings and it appreciates sitting in bright, indirect light.

If you keep things classic

Palms are a pretty easy (and substantially sized) plant to care for. Just be sure not to relegate them to the shade and keep their soil moist but not too saturated. If it’s looking a little sad, turning on your humidifier can help.

If you want a quick grower

Give the snake plant plenty of sun, and it will grow some serious inches—what could be more satisfying? Best of all, this plant isn’t too needy in the water department. A nice drink every two weeks should do the trick. Just don’t give it too much!

If you like a floral touch

Peace lilies are, well, perfectly peaceful additions to any interior. They’ll fare alright in lower-light situations, and best of all, they’ll let you know when they’re thirsty by wilting a bit, only to perk up quickly after getting a good pour of water.

If you’re all about the trends

Okay, okay. We also still love the look of the Instagram-famous monstera plant. As long as you have a good amount of natural light in your space, this plant should do just fine. Water it just once a week. Easy, right?

If you want a bit of texture

The ZZ plant is perfectly playful, and it can live well in shady spots, so no stress if your natural light situation is limited. It’s better to underwater it than to overwater it. A sip once every two weeks should be just fine.

See more plant ideas:
I Took an Online Class to Make Me a Better Plant Parent
I’ve Owned 30-Plus Plants—This Is the One I’ve Never Killed
These 9 Plants Can Reduce Stress and Increase Productivity (Yes, Really)