10 Best Plants To Survive and Thrive in the Barracks

Recently a marine took to Reddit with an interesting question, “Any devil dogs here that have experience owning a couple of plants in the barracks? Something low maintenance preferably.” Here are the top-voted plants for thriving in the barracks. 

1. Cacti


Cacti are great barracks plants because they are low-maintenance. They don’t require water often and only need a little sunlight. One user even mentioned, “A cactus will remind you of your chain of command- sturdy, prickly, and always around.”

2. Pothos

pothos plant with water and sunlight to help it grow faster.

Several marines agreed that a Pothos plant is perfect for barrack living. One shared some “free advice,” wait until the top inch or so of soil is dry to water them. Then, you can check with your finger. Also, if you can hang your Pothos over your Barracks window, it’ll trail down and look nice, freeing floor space for another plant. 

3. Moss

Another marine confessed, “I keep a jar of moss on my desk because it reminds me of home.” They collected it from the woods next to their house, planted it in a jar, and kept it alive for over three years. The only care it requires is a spritz of water every so often.

4. Rock Succulents


According to many, rock succulents require minimal care. They only require occasional watering. They are small and easy to transport. Rock Succulents are aesthetically pleasing and simple to maintain, even with a barracks lifestyle.

5. Chinese Evergreen

chinese evergreens

One marine explained that the Chinese Evergreen is suited to low light conditions. They also only require watering sparingly. They can last as long as two weeks with no interaction whatsoever. They are aesthetically pleasing and hardy to most conditions.

6. Monstera

close up of monstera in a wicker pot

Similar to the Chinese evergreen, Monstera can withstand low-light conditions. They also only require watering every one to two weeks. Many people enjoy Monstera for its broad leaves, which can even collect dust from the air, so your barracks stay cleaner for longer.

7. Bamboo in a Fish Tank

“While living in the barracks, I grew bamboo and peas in a small goldfish tank,” one replied. Even under the lowest light conditions, my plants thrived. During room inspections, one officer attempted to prove it was wrong but was told it didn’t matter by his superior.”

8. Bonsai Tree

man holding a bonsai tree that symbolizes bad feng shui

Another volunteered, “When I was stationed in Japan, I grew a cheap bonsai tree. They require particular care, but that care is spread over time, so it was easy to fit into my schedule. In addition, caring for the bonsai gave me peace in the middle of all the chaos and stress of living in the barracks. They are also excellent feng shui plants.

9. Small Succulents

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

“In every room I’ve stayed in, small succulents have thrived,” another admitted. They weather harsh conditions, low light, and minimal water without an issue. As a result, succulents require practically low maintenance. They also look nice anywhere you put them. “So I mainly kept them on desks and windowsills.”

10. Venus Fly Trap

venus fly trap

Finally, one marine said, “I’m currently living in the barracks, and two months ago, I received my first Venus fly trap in the mail. However, it took me a long time to choose the plant I wanted. 

Still, I decided on a fly trap to eliminate the possibility of flies in my room and my fascination with them. They are more work than most plants listed, but they are also more exciting than any plant.”

We hope you enjoyed these Marine Redditor‘s recommendations for plants that thrive in the barracks.

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Davin is a jack-of-all-trades but has professional training and experience in various home and garden subjects. He leans on other experts when needed and edits and fact-checks all articles.