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Dimi Boutselis / Her Campus

The 8 Best Plants for a Dorm or Apartment

Plants are a great addition to any dorm room or apartment, as they can liven up your space by adding a bit of nature! Here is a list of eight plants that will soon be essential decorations in your cozy home!


There are a lot of different types of philodendrons, but all require similar care. They are simple to take care of, and grow large green leaves. This plant requires bright, indirect sunlight. If the leaves begin to turn yellow, that is an indication that the plant may be getting too much light. It doesn’t need to be watered very often, only when the top inch of soil dries out. Mist the leaves often to ensure they remain shiny!


Peperomias are also easy to care for! They can take a good amount of neglect and still survive! These require medium to bright light, and love morning sunlight! These plants also do not need frequent watering, and allowing the soil to dry out between waterings will prevent fungus from growing in the soil. These can be kept in a small container for many years as well! 


This is a great plant for dorm rooms because it doesn’t need direct sunlight! You can tell if the plant is getting enough light by whether the leaves maintain their leaf patterns. Leaves of pothos plants that do not get enough light will turn all green. This plant can also help purify the air, which is great for stuffy dorm rooms! The soil must totally dry out between waterings, or else the roots of the plant will rot.


Cactus plants are classic in dorm rooms and are pretty difficult to kill. Desert cacti are the most popular type for houseplants. Desert cactus plants like a lot of sun, especially during the winter, so placing them near a window is key. They can dry out too quickly in direct summer sun however, so be careful during the hotter months. Desert cacti should be watered more often in the spring and summer, and the soil should always be wet. During the winter, desert cacti almost never need to be watered.

Chinese Evergreen 

This is another great plant for growing indoors, and they are pretty easy to care for! There are also many varieties of Chinese Evergreen. These plants thrive best in medium to low light, or indirect sunlight. They can get quite large, but the leaves can be trimmed back to make the plant more manageable for a small space! Additionally, you can place the leaves in water and they will root, and then you can plant it and have another plant! Since the leaves are quite large they can get dusty easily, but wiping them off with a cloth is a quick fix for this. 

Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera is another good houseplant, but this one requires a bit more sunlight than some others. Aloe plants do best with bright, indirect sunlight, so near a window is ideal. Try to avoid direct sunlight however, as this will dry the plant out and make the leaves turn yellow. Like many other of these houseplants, avoid overwatering. Aloe plants should only be watered when the soil is dry, two inches deep. Another benefit of aloe plants is that the juice from the leaves can be used topically to relieve pain from burns or scrapes!

Spider Plant

Spider Plants are super easy to care for, and they can endure a lot without dying! These are perfect for a dorm or apartment because they love bright, indirect light. They don’t need to be watered often, and they in fact enjoy drying out between waterings. Spider plants can grow quite quickly in the right conditions, so paring them back might be necessary. This can easily be done by pulling some of the spindles off. These plants can also be easily propagated and rooted, making it easy to get multiple plants quickly!

African Violets

African Violets are great house plants because they are quite small, and grow flowers, so they are super cute for dorms or apartments! Medium to bright indirect light is the best for these plants, especially during the blooming season. African Violets bloom during warmer months, and it’s important to keep them away from cold windows during the cooler months. Another tip is to keep the leaves dry, because they may rot if they are wet, so watering at the base is the best practice. 

I hope this list helps the plant lovers out there who may struggle with keeping plants alive. Plants are a great addition to any apartment or dorm room, so get yourself one ASAP! 


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Jenny is a sophmore at Boston University. She is studying psychology with a minor in special education. She is from Massachusetts, and loves all things MA! Her hobbies include listening to music, watching hockey games, and drinking coffee!
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