Looking for a Happier, Healthier 2023? Try Houseplants.

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It’s almost the end of 2022 and time to make those New Year’s resolutions, and if you are like me, making sure I’m healthier in the coming year is at the top of that annual list.

One way to accomplish that? More houseplants!

Plants in your home or office have lots of terrific benefits for your physical and emotional health. Because houseplants breathe in the carbon dioxide we give off, it’s pretty obvious that we need them around. But houseplants also work to remove many airborne toxins, and there are studies that indicate that they help reduce dust in the air of your indoor spaces.

(If you are wondering how plants can remove dust, here’s two simple scientific explanations. First, plants raise the humidity level in your home through a process called evapotranspiration. When you water your plant, the water goes from the soil up through the roots, and then into the stems and leaves, where it’s evaporated into the air through pores on the leaves. This humidity mixes with dust particles and the weight of it drags the dust from the air to the floor. Plus plants produce negative ions which attract dust particles, pulling them out of the air and onto their leaves.)

Then there are the psychological benefits of plant ownership. According to an article published in Psychology Today, studies show that having potted plants around – particularly green, leafy ones – have a calming effect that can boost our mood, our creativity and even how well we interact with others.

There are a few reasons for this. As anyone who has spent a day gardening knows, tending plants is a sure way to help ease signs of stress. That’s why doctors often suggest horticulture as a tool in coping with depression or anxiety. You can get that same good feeling tending plants indoors as well, enjoying the sense of purpose and the fun of “playing in the dirt.”

And don’t underestimate how working with soil can benefit you. A 2007 study found that Mycobacterium vaccae, a bacteria found in both indoor and outdoor soil, triggers the release of serotonin, which improves both emotional and mental health.

Finally, there’s just the beauty of plants, which can be displayed in so many different ways in your home. Besides the almost endless variety of traditional plant containers, there are terrariums, hanging kokedama (Japanese-style plants in circular moss balls), even glass beakers, like the one I have on my desk with succulents in it.

If you are new to houseplants, there are some that are pretty fool-proof like succulents, pothos, or spider plants. Spiders and golden pothos are also among the plants recommended for their air-cleaning benefits. Others are:

  • Philodendron (many varieties)
  • Dracaena (many varieties)
  • English Ivy
  • Mother in law’s tongue
  • Peace Lily
  • Chinese Evergreen

To get the full benefits of houseplants you want to have enough around that you can see one or two from pretty much anywhere in your house, but not so many that it feels cramped.

If you’d like to learn more about houseplants and how they can make your 2023 healthier and happier, please give us a visit. We’ll be open until Christmas Eve and then taking a holiday break between Christmas and New Years. We’ll be back in the nursery bright and early on Monday, January 2.

Happy Holidays!