University Advice – the art of keeping your plants alive

Almost every university student wants to keep a little plant or two in their flat or dorm.

And why wouldn’t they?

Plants are really fun, they give the room a nice vibe and we’re all told that it’s key to our feng shui … or they just add to that instagrammable aesthetic we all want to create when we leave home and settle into our university abodes.


There seems to be the idea that it’s almost impossible for university students to keep plants alive. Sometimes keeping actual living things, other than yourself (which is hard enough already as a student sometimes) seems like an impossible feat to conquer!

There are draughty windows, fluctuating heating levels, insufficient window space and if we’re all honest with ourselves, our own brains making us forget about basic plant care like watering. All these things hinder a plant’s survival and because this was a topic of intense discussion over the last year (and my poor succulent was sadly stranded in my dorm room for weeks before he could be rescued – thankfully he survived and was saved by a friend until we could be reunited), I thought I would do a little post about keeping plants alive as a university student. These rules work in general for all novice plant parents, but are particularly targeted at uni students.

Rule one: WATER THEM!!!

Go figures – one of the easiest ways to keep your plants alive is to actually water them. It’s not too complicated 🙂

More often than not, the biggest source of issues with plant caretaking is not enough water, so make sure you’re giving all your little plant babies enough water. If it’s hard to remember, you can put little post it notes on your plant pots saying how many days you need to water them, set reminders on your phone, or what I like to do is for my succulents, because you only need to water them every week, I water them when I do my weekly laundry.

Just find your own way to remember to water your plant babies, and that should solve most of your problems!

Rule two: Pick the right plants

Part of the problem may be that you’re picking the wrong plants. This may not sound true, but some plants really are more high maintenance and difficult to look after than others.

If you’re a new plant parent, try sticking to plants that have high chances of survival, are low maintenance and generally not too fiddly or fussy. Here are some common houseplants that are easy to look after:

  • Rubber plants
  • Ivy
  • Chilli plants
  • Snake plants (mother-in-law’s tongue)
  • Succulents
  • Cacti

Most of these don’t need too much water, which is great, and very little maintenance, but be sure to check out how much sun they need! Plants need different amounts of sun and not getting the right amount can also mess up their chances of survival so keep that in mind! So if you’re like me living in the North of England, sun is hard to come by so maybe pick a plant that doesn’t need loads of sunlight and vitamin D.

Rule three: Not too much water

Okay so please take this with a pinch of salt – when I say not too much water, I mean don’t drown your poor plant and give it a cup of water every single day or something. You still need to water it!

However, another common problem, especially for plants like succulents, is over-watering them. Remember, these plants are built to survive with minimal water so if you forget to water them once, that’s okay, but try to stick to watering them once a week ish and they should be all fine!

And there you have it! I’m far from a plant expert, but there’s nothing quite like having some plants to look after during your uni years. Sometimes you just need a little extra help keeping them alive, so I hope for all the uni students out there about to venture into plant parenthood that this post helps!

Do you have any plant advice you’d like to share? Any tips for keeping them alive? And lastly, is there any university advice you’d like me to chat about on the blog? Send in your questions and queries about uni and I’ll do a post on them!

Otherwise, that’s all I have for you today everyone – good luck with your plant babies!

Lots of Love

Blondey on a Mission xxx

Author: blondeyonamission

Hey everyone! I'm a lifestyle and travel blogger from South Africa and about to relocate to the UK for university. My blog is all about stories, tips and advice with topics ranging from university, organisation, friends, books, travel and more. Please check it out and I hope you enjoy xxx

15 thoughts

  1. Hey Blondey, you “ladies: want a tip for house-plants, if at all possible, all you need to do is give them 2 x ice cubes a week, try to keep it same day of the week, like laundry washing day. Blondey, if the picture of the plants are yours , the 2nd on the left, the “Bonsai” very important for survival that you snip off the long stems .
    Enjoy, can also out Violets on windowsills, doe well and add a bit of colour.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Wendy!! Oooh that’s great advice thanks!! Yes they are my plants and will definitely remember to do the pruning! Colour is a good idea am just waiting to see what plants are available at the little market xx


  2. Love this post ☺️ And I’m so nervous about killing my plants too, I’ve had so many die on me. I would add to the list a Pothos Plant. I have been able to keep these alive for years and they’re sooo easy! Water once a week and keep in indirect sunlight, which is basically a windowsill. 🪴 I can’t imagine being selfless enough to care for a plant when I was at my university ha! So good for u 🥰🥰🥰

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hey, loved the post and you forgot another type of plant that is also low maintenance and very affordable, the air plant ! Such a delicacy and with hundreds of species, mostly needing indirect light and watering occasionally. They also live up to their expectations, being air plants, needing it and in return growing into beautiful plants.

    Liked by 1 person

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