Plants have been shown in studies by the NIH and in Psychology Today to have a variety of positive effects on mental health. During the colder months where the days are shorter and we are forced inside for longer periods of time, plants can help ease the transition that often comes with depression for a lot of people.
Plants have been shown to:
- Lower levels of anxiety
- Lower blood pressure
- Increase attentiveness
- Improve well being
These are just a few of the benefits of simply having plants in your environment. One of the main functions of plants is the production of oxygen. Oxygen is considered a "waste" product as it is what is left when plants convert light energy into chemical energy.
Benefits of increased oxygen in your environment and your body include:
- Improves sleep
- Clears toxins
- Improves cell regeneration
- Improves immunity
- Aids in digestion
Most people can't afford "oxygen therapy," but we can afford a plant or two and may have a friend or family member willing to share.
There are several that are easy to care for and can increase the oxygen output in your home.
Here are my top 3 plants for easy home care:
This plant enjoys bright areas and do not require direct sunlight. With minimal care they will can and will produce baby spider plants that you can share with friends or family or pot in other areas of your home. Spider plants like moderate watering which means keeping the soil moist, not wet and do not allow it to dry out.
Snake plant aka Mother-in-Law's Tongue
This plant is practically kill-proof. It prefers drier conditions and will work well in bright to partially dark areas. It is a slow growing plant, so good for folks who are in it for the long haul. This plant prefers dry soil so allow it to be mostly dry before watering. Take care to water direct to the soil and avoid wetting the leaves.
Aloe vera comes in a multitude of varieties from small to large. The common aloe (aloe barbadensis miller) is one of 100s available and is one of the two types of aloe; green and blue. Either way, aloe does better in dry conditions and prefer soil similar to that of cactus. They do not like to be standing water of any sort. The top 1-2 inches of soil should be dry before watering again. Aloe also does not like direct sunlight. If you find the leaves turning orange or brown, move it to a bright are out of direct sunlight.
All of the plants listed are my personal plants.
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