INDOOR PLANTS THAT ARE SAFE FOR PETS
Whether it’s the smell from the flowers, the idea of digging in the soil, or munching on the leaves, pets seem to never agree what the purpose of plants is in our homes.
While some plants may scare away any hesitant pet parent from joining the plant community, it is still feasible to flex your green thumb inside and keep your pets healthy at the same time.
Before we continue, it is important to note that while it is absolutely possible to bring plants into your home that are normally unsafe for your pets, you should still fully research each plant individually before introducing them home to your cat or dog.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed with worry about which plant babies to bring home, we don’t blame you.
However, if anything should help you feel better, it’s that researchers all over the world have contributed to a comprehensive list hosted on the ASPCA website about which plants are toxic and non-toxic. Once you’ve bookmarked that link for future reference, take a look at our recommendations for indoor plants that are safe for pets!
Chinese Money Plant (Pilea peperomiodes)
The Pilea peperomiodes is one of the most popular plants in the world right now, partly due to the rise of the indoor plant craze, how easy they are to propagate, but also because of their non-toxic status to children and pets! Their common names include the Pancake Plant, the UFO Plant, Mirror Grass, and Chinese Money Plant.
These low maintenance plants enjoy placements that receive bright indirect light and love to live in loose, well-draining soil. Be careful of how much direct light the Pilea peperomiodes receives in your home – they are susceptible to sunburns, especially is exposed to direct sun long term.
The Chinese Money Plant is also incredibly communicative in telling you when it’s thirsty; when you see the leaves drooping, that’s it’s way of telling you it’s time to water; always check the soil using either your finger, a chopstick, or a moisture to see if the top couple inches of the soil are dry first before watering. And while these plants don’t grow to overtake entire rooms, they still benefit from being repotted every 12-18 months to encourage growth.
Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera bridgesii)
Internationally renowned cacti breeder Frédéric Schlumberger loaned his name to the tenacious Schlumbergera genus of cacti, the most common of which is the bridgesii species, also known as the Christmas Cactus.
Originally found in the mountains of Southeastern Brazil, this particular plant is actually a hybrid born from the Schlumbergera truncata and russelliana but has made a name for itself all on its own. The gorgeous blooms that come in a diverse number of colors appear between November and December, hence the name Christmas Cactus.This and the other Schlumbergera varieties love moderate humidity, cooler temperatures, an easily draining substrate, and the proper amount of light at certain times throughout the year.
This plant prefers partially dappled light during the Spring and Summer but full, direct sunlight in the Autumn and Winter in order to help flower buds develop. Thankfully, all parts of the Christmas Cactus, including the blooms, are non-toxic to both cats and dogs; it’s easy to keep your furry and green friends alive and well with this plant in your home.
One of the most common types of succulent to live inside homes is, coincidentally, also completely safe for pets! The Echeveria succulent comes in hundreds of different varieties, shapes, colors, patterns, and with the advancements in greenhouses all over the world, there are now also hundreds of hybrids now, as well.
While all existing kinds of these plants are safe to pets, always ask the shop if the type you’re buying is also safe because genetic mutations can always occur during the plant hybridization process.
These succulents are native to the moderate dessert regions of Mexico and the Southwestern United States. When bringing your Echeveria Blue Prince or Echeveria Orion home, try to recreate the same sunny, dry environment on a windowsill or somewhere equally bright.
Though they can survive with less light, their colors can fade, and thick leaves can flatten. Regardless of the species of Echeveria, make sure that they are planted in well-draining, succulent-mix soil and begin by watering them every other week and adjust if need be.
Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
Everyone and their mother have either heard of the Spider Plant or has three of them at home with four more baby plants ready to be propagated. While first found in Southern Africa, the Chlorophytum comosum, it started becoming popular as a staple of the houseplant world in the U.K. in the 19th century. Spider Plants have remained in our living rooms ever since due to how incredibly easy they are to propagate through cutting off the baby leaf clusters that grow from long, skinny branches underneath the mother plant. Their care requirements are very minimal, including moderate indirect light minimum and consistent weekly or biweekly watering depending upon the time of year.
Though the Cholorphytum comosum look like every cat’s dream toy, it’s best not to plant them in soil balls so Mr. Fluffy can roll them around the house. Luckily, this plant is one of the most recommend plants for pets in the world because of their lack of adverse effects on a cat or dog’s system when eaten.
Cats are especially attracted to Spider Plants because the leaves themselves are hallucinogenic when ingested! This is not harmful to pets, but it’s probably smartest to keep them out of reach when you can.