Top 10 Seriously Cool Succulents That Make Great Houseplants

Updated: Sep. 19, 2023

If you're looking for some eccentric, low-maintenance plants to keep you company indoors, look no further than succulents. Here are 10 of our favorites.

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String of Pearls

Curio rowleyanus

This funky medium-sized succulent grows skinny stems of vibrant green, pearl-like leaves. It prefers a lot of sun and, like many other succulents, is very easy to propagate. Make sure it has soil that drains well, and don’t overwater. Wear gloves when handling to avoid skin irritation.

Why we love it: Place string of pearls on a high shelf in your home so it drapes over the side of its container. Its tendrils can stretch 2 to 3 feet long.

Houseplant Tip: Like outdoor plants, individual houseplants require different types of lighting conditions. Look up whether your plant prefers direct light, bright indirect light, medium indirect light or low light, then place accordingly.

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Crown of Thorns

Euphorbia milii

Tiny, usually pink or red flowers bloom almost year-round on this plant, adding a splash of color to any blank space in your home. Wear tough gloves when planting crown of thorns in a pot of well-draining soil, as its thorns are sharp. Give it a spot near a window so it gets several hours of direct sunlight.

Why we love it: A wide variety of hybrid cultivars are available, including Mini-Bell for small pots or Rosalie and Saturnus for extra-large flowers.

More of an outdoor gardener? Grow these succulents that will attract pollinators.

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Ponytail Palm

Beaucarnea recurvata 

The ponytail palm succulent has a thick, trunklike stem that sprouts stringy green leaves out of the top. It prefers a sunny spot and needs very little watering, about once every three to four weeks. It’s also nontoxic for both cats and dogs, so you can safely place one on your floor.

Why we love it: Though the name suggests otherwise, this plant is not a tree—it just looks like one!

If you love colorful plants, try these perfectly pink succulents for your home.

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Panda Plant

Kalanchoe tomentosa

It’s very easy to care for this succulent, which is also known as chocolate soldier. Let the soil completely dry out between waterings. Because panda plant stores plenty of water in its thick, fuzz-covered leaves, that means less watering for you.

Why we love it: The velvety texture over light green leaves with dark tips pops when the plant gets enough light.

Shutterstock 1107071966 Twig

African Milk Tree

Euphorbia trigona

A tall and easy-to-care-for succulent, an African milk tree has small teardrop-shaped leaves, as well as thorns that grow vertically along the ridges of thick green stems. Because of its sharp thorns and irritating sap, it’s not recommended for homes with children or pets.

Why we love it: Add some height and drama to your space— this plant reaches 5 or 6 feet indoors, although it can be pruned shorter.

Learn how to grow a succulent container garden.

String of bananas succulent houseplant
Photo by Katkami/Getty Images

String of Bananas

Curio radicans

Perfect for an indoor hanging planter, this succulent’s tendrils are covered with small leaves that are shaped like little green bananas. Place it in a spot that gets plenty of sunlight, with a lot of room for it to spill down, such as the top of a bookshelf.

Why we love it: Give the plant some time outside during warmer months, if desired, by slowly acclimating it.

Get troubleshooting tips from the experts to diagnose what’s wrong with your succulent?

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Zebra Plant

Haworthiopsis fasciata

The zebra plant is an eye-catching dark green succulent with white horizontal stripes along its spiky leaves. The small plant grows slowly and can withstand long periods with no water. Let the soil completely dry between watering; it won’t tolerate overwatering. Place near an east-facing window for best results.

Why we love it: Zebra plant is quite easy to keep alive indoors because it can handle very dry air.

Learn how to grow a Mother of Thousands succulent plant.

Close Up Of Multicolored Prickly Pear Flowers On Green Stem
Ekspansio/Getty Images

Prickly Pear Cactus

Opuntia spp.

One fun fact about prickly pear cactus: It’s a cinch to propagate. Though some prickly pears are hardy enough for outdoor gardens, any that are kept inside thrive best where they can get bright light and stay warm.

Why we love it: Like most other cactuses, the prickly pear requires little maintenance.

Houseplant Tip: If you’re looking to fill an empty space in your home, try a larger houseplant such as monstera, fiddle-leaf fig tree, bamboo palm or money tree—all create a statement and add a dramatic pop of green.

Is a donkey tail succulent invasive?

Shutterstock 254477461 Rosette

Hens and Chicks

Sempervivum spp.

A classic in the world of succulents, hens-and-chicks starts out very small and is easy to propagate. With rosettes in a variety of greens and reds, the plants look amazing grouped with other types of succulents in a pot.

Why we love it: Try planting hens-and-chicks outside in the garden too—it is hardy in Zones 4 to 8.

Ready to try a succulent for the first time? Follow our complete guide to growing succulents.

Shutterstock 321021023 Aloe


Aloe vera

Similar to other succulents, aloe is just fine with indirect sunlight in a home. And it isn’t fazed by dry indoor air. Keep in sandy, well-draining soil. Mature aloe plants may produce flowers.

Why we love it: Break off a piece of aloe vera and use the clear liquid inside to soothe a burn or irritated skin.

Next, learn how to design a miniature succulent fairy garden.

The Family Handyman
Originally Published on The Family Handyman