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Get houseplants and get happy


Last updated 1/24/2008 at Noon

If people could have something in their home that would purify the air, have a positive effect on their mood, reduce feelings of stress and improve their attitude, would they want it?

Most people would answer that question with a resounding “Yes!”

Good news! This item is affordable and readily available. What is it? It is the common houseplant.

Houseplants look great and can make people feel great, too. Stacks of research support claims that indoor plants can have a calming effect, reduce headaches, boost learning, improve productivity and even help people recover more quickly from illness.

Adults may recall learning in elementary school science (hopefully they were listening that day) that plants clean the air by taking in carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen.

Houseplants also rid the air of common indoor pollutants like benzene and formaldehyde – byproducts of the slow molecular breakdown of household items such as carpets, plastics and synthetic fibers.

The humble houseplant decreases dust and noise levels, too.

Plants easily brighten a room and lift spirits when people see them. Maybe this is why they are popular gifts for special occasions.

Gardeners inherently understand the benefits of plants. Even during winter months, die-hard gardeners refuse to let their green thumbs go brown. They extend their gardening pleasure by tending to indoor plants.

One doesn’t have to be an experienced gardener to take care of houseplants, though. Anyone can care for them.

Some of the most popular low-maintenance houseplants include Mother-in-Law’s Tongue (sanservieria trifasciatia), spider plant (chlorophytum comosum), prayer plant (maranta leuconeura), African violet (saintpaulia), rubber tree (ficus elastica decora) and cactus.

Even though the above mentioned plants are easy-to-care-for, do not be deceived. Houses are not natural environments for plants. They must be watered and fed regularly.

So, people should go ahead and purchase some botanical friends (and not forget the fertilizer) to brighten up their homes or work spaces. The plants will work hard and their owners will breathe easier.


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