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1. ZZ PLANT (Zamioculcas zamiifolia) ZZs command attention
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1. ZZ PLANT (Zamioculcas zamiifolia) ZZs command attention with glossy foliage and an upright habit. They thrive in lowlight conditions and don't require a lot of water. Go on, let them go dry. You just can't kill them. Though they can reach 3 feet in height, ZZs are slow growers. Keep them well drained, away from bright light and don't overwater. You can almost forget about them once you've brought them home. Life span: several years(Credit: Newsday / Audrey C. Tiernan)

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Houseplants you can't kill

In my line of work, I've heard confessions of murder from dozens of otherwise decent folks. They've come clean about killing cactuses and lamented about offing orchids. The culprits typically accept their guilt and self-flagellate for awhile before ultimately swearing off houseplants forever. But the truth is no plant was created to live indoors. Houseplants are really tropical plants that we've decided to domesticate, oftentimes many horticultural zones away from their homes. It's no wonder, then, that so many are massacred by good-intentioned homeowners who, through no fault of their own, lack sufficient sunlight or areas away from drafty windows or radiators. Here, then, are eight low-maintenance houseplants that practically take care of themselves. No green thumb required. -- JESSICA DAMIANO

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