If House Plant Appreciation Day isn’t on your calendar…it should be. House plants do a lot to keep our homes healthier and more enjoyable to live in. Here is just a small list of the BIG things that house plants do for us. Now…go put this holiday in your calendar, share it with a friend, go buy a houseplant and get one for your neighbor too!
They make it easier to breathe
Our bodies take in oxygen and releases carbon dioxide when we breathe. Thankfully, during photosynthesis, plants absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen. This means that by adding plants to interior spaces you can increase oxygen levels. One thing that is important to note is that photosynthesis stops at night and plants typically breathe like humans, absorbing oxygen and releasing carbon dioxide. Be sure to place the plants that do the opposite in your bedrooms. These plants: orchids, succulents and epiphytic bromeliads take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen. By placing these plants in bedrooms you will have fresher air during the night as well.
They are your natural vaporizer
Did you know that plants release moisture vapor? Plants actually release about 97% of the water that they take in! This happens during photosynthesis and respiratory processes. This can be a great way to increase the humidity of the air in your home. Studies at the Agricultural University of Norway found that by using plants in interior spaces, you can decrease the incidence of dry skin, colds, sore throats and dry coughs. How cool is that?!
They are your natural air purifier
Toxins are gross, they make you sick, and we don’t like them. Thankfully, plants can remove toxins from air in your home. According to NASA research, 87% of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) can be removed every 24 hours by plants. VOCs (if you’re curious) are substances like formaldehyde (present in rugs, vinyl, cigarette smoke and grocery bags), benzene and trichloroethylene (both found in man-made fibers, inks, solvents and paint). Benzene can be found in high concentrations in places like your office or library where there are many books and printed materials.
Modern houses are climate-controlled and tend to be far more air-tight than older houses. This causes most VOCs to get trapped inside. NASA found that plants purify this trapped air by using its root zone microorganisms in the dirt to convert VOCs into food for the plant.
House plants can improve health and lead to faster recovery
KSU found that by putting plants in hospital rooms, there is an increased speed in recovery rates of surgical patients. The results of having plants in the room instead of no plants? Patients request less pain medication, have lower heart rates and blood pressure, experience less fatigue and anxiety, and are released from the hospital faster.
In a study done by the AgriculturalUniversity of Norway, sickness rates fell by more than 60 percent in offices with plants as opposed to offices that lack plant life.