Tovah Martin’s The Indestructible Houseplant: 200 Everyone Can Grow

by DerdriuMarriner

Tovah Martin’s The Indestructible Houseplant gives illustrative, informative profiles of 200 beautiful plants that everyone can grow.

Indestructible houseplants juggle maximum impact and minimum effort

A mismatch between what habitat niches give and what plants take in terms of drainage, light, moisture, nutrients, and temperature accounts for many a garden’s decline and failure outdoors. Gardeners contrastingly blame the lack of a green thumb on houseplant decline and indoor failure. But problems indoors with growing and sustaining plants oftentimes can be traced to the same maladjustments as outdoors:
• inaccurate temperature ranges;
• inadequate nutrient levels;
• inappropriate watering schedules;
• incorrect soil pH;
• insufficient light intensity.

Maladaptation more than malpractice therefore describes more typically the reason why plants fare poorly as vegetation for a house’s interior, not exterior, spaces.

Resolution indeed expects savvy selections of stunningly strong houseplants whose survival does not demand that caregivers hover.




Sansevieria trifasciata enjoys popularity as a houseplant because of its indestructibility, aesthetic lines, and pleasing palette:

NASA rates Sansevieria trifasciata as one of the best indoor plants for improving air quality via passive absorption of toxins such as formaldehyde and nitrogen oxides.
Sansevieria trifasciata: commonly known as mother-in-law's tongue or as snake plant
Sansevieria trifasciata: commonly known as mother-in-law's tongue or as snake plant

Indestructible houseplants keep rooms filled with air-freshening phytoremediators


Plant-lovers oftentimes favor conversation and music for houseplants. They give companion planting similar priority. Planting associations heighten indestructibility.

Room-sharing involves:

  • African violets;
  • air (friendship/urn), aluminum, barbershop (cast-iron), beefsteak, burn, century, inch (oyster), measles (polka dot), mirror, mosaic (nerve/rattlesnake/silver net), never-never (prayer), panda, radiator, snake (mother-in-law’s tongue), spider, zebra, zz plants;
  • begonias, bishop’s cap (fire-sticks, Medusa’s head), blue chalk-sticks, blue daze ;
  • Chinese evergreens;
  • Christmas, mistletoe (old man’s head) cacti;
  • club, spike mosses;
  • crotons;
  • dracaena;
  • elephant foot, fig, octopus trees;
  • false/Ming arralias, ferns;
  • geraniums;
  • hens and chicks (house leek);
  • Hindu rope (porcelain/wax flower), maidenhair (wire) vines;
  • ivies;
  • Joseph’s coat;
  • Malaysian grapes, Mexican mint;
  • Norfolk Island pines;
  • peace lilies, philodendrons, pothos;
  • sedges, silver squills, slipper orchids, snow roses, string-of-pearls. 


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Indestructible houseplants let beautiful sustainability rule everywhere indoors


Plant-lovers ultimately judge container-sharing as sustainable with same-species only. They keep indestructibles indestructible by:

  • fertilizing compost- and loam-enriched potting soils with fish emulsion-reinforced organic fertilizers every 3 to 4 weeks from early spring to late fall;
  • potting in clay or hand-thrown or unglazed terracotta with subtle base-mouth flares;
  • pouring a 2-inch (5.08-centimeter) layer over surfaces before soils feel dry, leave nothing on probes, pale in color;
  • propagating by leaf wedges, root-ball division, stem cuttings;
  • repotting in spring when root-balls fill 2- to 3-inch (5.08- to 7.62-centimeter) container wall margins;
  • respecting night-time temperatures of 60°F (15.56°C);
  • sun-lighting 36 inches (91.44 centimeters) from west-facing windows;
  • trimming super-leggy wintery, super-thick autumnal growths.

Each above-mentioned experience leaves them houseplant sustainability experts. 


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All-Season Planter: *Hangable; includes hanging chain *Portable *Stackable; includes tray ~ Self-watering grid for even dispersal *Versatile placement indoors/outdoors: balcony, countertop, entryway, window sill, etc.
terracotta planters

Indestructible houseplants make plant-lovers security-conscious, stress-managing design specialists


Environmental stress makes even newbies disease and pest managers. It necessitates treatments which ask of houseplants:

  • extermination, mists, oils, soaps, traps respectively against mealybugs, spider mites, scale, aphids, whiteflies;
  • watering adjustments when waterlogged soils harbor fungus gnats.

But it never obstructs configuring households into fragrant, lush, radiant homes so long as containers remain inaccessible to children and pets and gloves serve to protect hands during such contact activities as:

  • fertilizing;
  • irrigating;
  • misting;
  • pruning, propagating;
  • repotting, rotating;
  • spraying;
  • trapping.

All interactions indeed offer hopes for sustaining fresh, green, healthy, inviting households with Tovah Martin’s 2015-released Timber Press publication about The Indestructible Houseplant adept at:

  • self-defense with contact irritants;
  • self-promotion with pleasing structures and textures;
  • self-sufficiency with minimal care. 


The Indestructible Houseplant: 200 Beautiful, Easy-Care Plants that Everyone Can Grow by Tovah Martin ~ Available now via Amazon

The crucial part of houseplant success is picking the right plants: here are 200 tough but beautiful plants which thrive in less-than-ideal conditions, and they’re easy to find!



My special thanks to talented artists and photographers/concerned organizations who make their fine images available on the internet.


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garden gloves

Sources Consulted


Martin, Tovah. 2015. The Indestructible Houseplant: 200 Beautiful Plants That Everyone Can Grow. Portland OR: Timber Press, Inc. 


CobraCo Two Tiered Garden Cart FC100 ~ Available now via Amazon ~ #8 Best Seller in Plant Container Accessories on Amazon! ~ Shows off everyday as well as holiday plant displays!

*Decorative, two-tiered garden cart; vinyl-covered steel, finished in deep hunter green ~ Reminiscent of flower carts found outside Parisian shops and boutiques ~ Perfect indoors and outdoors!
plant stands
the end which is also the beginning
the end which is also the beginning

Diatomaceous Earth Food Grade 10 lb by DiatomaceousEarth ~ Available now via Amazon ~ #1 Best Seller in Garden Fertilizers on Amazon!

100% pure freshwater diatomaceous earth (tiny, fossilized diatoms [aquatic organisms] that accumulated over millennia in freshwater lakes) *No contaminants: professionally packaged using stainless steel machinery
organic fertilizers

Grandmothers Green Thumb by Heinrich Wilhelm: Available as Giclée Print and Premium Giclée Print ~ Available now via AllPosters

1880 oil on canvas by Johann Heinrich Wilhelm Tischbein (February 15, 1751 – February 26, 1828)
Grandmothers Green Thumb

Me and my purrfectly purrfect Maine coon kittycat, Augusta "Gusty" Sunshine

Gusty and I thank you for reading this article and hope that our product selection interests you; Gusty Gus receives favorite treats from my commissions.
DerdriuMarriner, All Rights Reserved
DerdriuMarriner, All Rights Reserved
Updated: 08/02/2021, DerdriuMarriner
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DerdriuMarriner on 05/07/2021

WriterArtist, Thank you for coming by and valuing the time that Tovah Martin took to help those whose green thumbs darken because of fussy environments and fussy plants.
The book offers plants -- all of which I'm aiming to have and love -- that are beautiful, bounteous and brave.

WriterArtist on 05/06/2021

Dear DerdriuMarriner,
I had never imagined there could be 200 possible plants that are easy to grow. In my experience, Sanseveria, Money plant, Crotons, Cactus and Succulents are indestructible provided one does not overwater or starve them indefinitely. They are really hard to kill. Many plants that I own are so fussy, a bit of overwatering or sun - alas, they wither away.

DerdriuMarriner on 05/02/2017

candy47, Tovah Martin's book is educationally fun to look at, read and translate into realities. Three big problems for houseplants are incorrect fertilizing, lighting and watering. On the other hand, it's easy and nice to have a meadow of no-fuss, no-muss wildflowers to look at through the windows ;-D.

candy47 on 05/02/2017

I've never had much of a green thumb, but I keep trying! This article just might do the trick this time!

DerdriuMarriner on 09/22/2015

CruiseReady, Isn't that stand lovely? It holds up equally well and looks equally attractive near a sunny window inside or on the lawn, porch, or terrace.
Perhaps in a choice between being outside or in, your plants prefer the outdoors (don't we all?)! But if you favor indoor plants, then Tovah Martin's book is easy to browse and put into effect.

CruiseReady on 09/19/2015

I am with blackspanielgallery.... just about anything grows here outdoors, but I haven't been very good with bringing plants indoors. That's a lovely plant display stand that you found!

DerdriuMarriner on 09/18/2015

blackspanielgallery, They're the kind of plants that tolerate almost non-existent care and still prettify spaces!

blackspanielgallery on 09/11/2015

I have a way of destroying plants, so perhaps these would be worth considering.

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