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The surprising benefits of indoor gardening

Gerbera daisies make great indoor plants

Air quality is big news these days.

Companies provide us with green household cleaners and natural fiber clothing. We have stopped using aerosol cans, we’re recycling like crazy and we buy organic food. It’s a better-late-than-never approach to prevent pollutants and toxins from entering the atmosphere, our personal environment and ultimately, our bodies.

All good stuff, but what about the chemicals and toxins that have been in our homes for years and aren’t planning on kicking out any time soon?
Houseplants, the original air-purifiers, are nature’s answer to indoor air pollution.

Houseplants as Filters

Houseplants create a healthier environment by absorbing chemicals from building materials, hydrocarbons from furniture and detergents, as well as filtering allergens from the air.

They can remove eighty-seven percent of air toxins in twenty-four hours by absorbing them and giving off precious life-giving oxygen. Toxins like formaldehyde, xylene, benzene, acetone, chloroform and trichloroethylene come from adhesives, caulking compounds, paints, particle board, stains and varnishes. Other offenders that put off harmful chemicals are tobacco smoke, detergents, ceiling tiles, electro-photographic printers, carpeting and other floor coverings.

According to current scientific research, caring for plants offers measurable physical and mental benefits, as well. These include:

  • Therapeutic outdoor gardens have been proven by the American Horticultural Association to reduce stress, lower blood pressure, promote healing and reduce depression.
  • Houseplants raise humidity levels for a more oxygen-rich environment. For this very reason, productivity has been proven to increase in the workplace.
  • Beautification of the home. Think houseplants went out with macramé hangers and long side burns? Think again. Houseplants have been adding the finishing touch and that accent color to homes since the seventeenth century. They bring the warmth that can link the bridge from “house” to “home”.
  • Incredible variety. There are textured plants, flowering plants, climbing plants, plants to perfume a room, plants for bright areas, and plants for nearly dark corners.

Science has proven what gardeners have suspected for hundreds of years. Indoor plants offer many health benefits to people. What better place to take advantage of these benefits than where we spend the days, minutes and hours of our lives?