Did you know that some indoor plants can produce the same benefits as certain household pets? For instance, many studies have demonstrated that petting a dog or a cat will lower blood pressure, but the same pleasant reactions come from watering houseplants and enjoying their lovely colors and scents.
Before talking at length about the benefits of indoor plants, however, we do have to say one "negative" thing, and that is the simple fact that not all plants are suitable for indoor use. They might be poisonous to humans and animals, they may not survive in the indoor conditions, and they may grow too quickly or too largely to be a suitable houseplant.
With that in mind, let's consider the ways that indoor plants improve our health. We already noted that they can help to control blood pressure by providing us with a very pleasing sense of calm and relaxation. They can also greatly improve the quality of the air in our homes too.
For example, during the winter heating season in many parts of the world, the humidity in the average home dips to well below the humidity levels of desert environments. For instance, a home in Vermont during the worst part of the winter may have less than 20 percent humidity - which is well below desert conditions. The addition of some houseplants can begin to "turn around" this uncomfortable situation because the plants require watering and because they also release water molecules into the air.
In addition to making humidity levels far more acceptable, they can also cleanse the air too. Whether we are smokers who actually "light up" indoors or whether we just happen to have a dusty or heavy environment in our homes, potted plants do the exact same things for the air that they do outdoors. This means that they take in pollutants such as CO2 and convert them to oxygen and other beneficial compounds.
Let's not also forget that some plants can provide all of the things above and also serve as a food source! You can grow herbs, lettuces, and even "hot house" varieties indoors as well. There are many clever ways to make window gardens during even the coldest months and to improve your health and your household in a very beautiful and incredibly affordable way. Why not consider some plants for your living spaces during the coming winter months?
Indoor plants are a beautiful addition to any home. While it may be tempting to buy artificial greenery and call it done, it is much better to avoid these dust magnets and go with real plants that clean the air too. Some specific types of plants do a better job at creating clean indoor air better than others.
NASA and ALCA (Associated Landscaping Contractors of America) conducted a joint study that proved indoor plants can help people to avoid the symptoms of Sick Building Syndrome.
In addition, they found that combining an indoor fan and carbon filter or other types of air cleaning systems like dehumidifiers for crawl spaces enhanced the plants’ abilities to effectively transform dirty indoor air to a clean, healthy environment.
Specific Plants Found To Clean Air Most Effectively
Different plants that clean the air, performed different functions more effectively than others; and surprisingly, some of the best performers were very common household plants.
• Philodendron – There are more than 900 species in the Philodendron genus; and many of them are very easy to find, popular houseplants. Philodendrons grow well from simple cuttings, and some of the more showy types are available at nurseries and greenhouses everywhere.
Many popular Philodendron species have climbing tendencies, which make them a perfect choice for even small living spaces.
• Golden Pothos – Golden Pothos are another very popular houseplant – one thing that makes these plants ideal for indoor climates is the fact that they require very little light to live. They can thrive in low light – so long as there is enough light to read by, that is enough for a Golden Pothos. These do well in hanging baskets since they like to cling and climb.
• Spider Plants – These plants are very low maintenance and are also easy to propagate. They like plenty of natural light, but they do not do well in direct sunlight. Spider plants do best in a hanging basket, and can become very large.
They are one of the best plants for cleaning the air, so if you are on a tight budget, getting a healthy spider plant and propagating the babies is an inexpensive, yet effective way to keep your home’s atmosphere fresh.
• Spathiphyllum – Also known as Peace Lilies or Spath, Spathiphyllum have dark green upright foliage and grow white, coral, green or red blossoms that have no odor. These plants do not require a lot of light, and they can be watered about once a week, just like most other indoor plants. Peace Lilies are excellent air purifiers – they remove formaldehyde, benzene, and other common household pollutants.
How To Use Plants For Cleaner Indoor Air
You do not need to transform your home into a greenhouse in order to enjoy the benefits of clean air. You should use two to three large plants for every 20-25 square yards in your home as long as your ceilings are of normal height. If you have cathedral ceilings, add one or two more plants to the living space. Since most indoor house plants originated in shady areas, they do not require direct sunlight to thrive.