The Health Benefits of Houseplants

According to the American Society of Horticultural Science, the quality of air indoors is quickly becoming an important health concern, “particularly in the United States and other developed countries where people may spend up to 90 percent of their time indoors.” The good news is there is an easy and decorative way to influence our indoor air quality- houseplants. Houseplants do more than look good in your home or office; they are busy filtering our air. In addition to tending to their own needs, plants offer us a lot of benefits too. Wondering about incorporating plants into your home or office? Native Roots in Durango, Colorado is here to give you the scoop on the benefits of houseplants!

Houseplants Help Clean the Air

Without realizing it, humans and plants are breathing together. Every time we take a breath in we inhale oxygen, and when we exhale, we release carbon dioxide. Plants do the opposite; they absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen. This is a relationship that makes us and plants great partners. NASA has even noticed this relationship between plants and people. Because of their air purifying benefits, NASA produced its very own study into the matter with hopes of incorporating houseplants into space stations. Calling it the Clean Air Study, NASA found in its results that “certain common indoor plants may provide a natural way of removing toxic agents such as benzene, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene from the air.” According to their study, you don’t even need a ton of plants in your home or office to benefit from their air purifying qualities. “NASA researchers suggest efficient air cleaning is accomplished with at least one plant per 100 square feet of home or office space.” So if you live in a 500 square foot home, you only need 5 plants to purify your air. That’s pretty easy!

Houseplants make you Happy- and Productive!

Chores and work are hard enough as it is! Researchers are finding that adding a few plants to your home and office might make hard work a little easier, and more relaxing. According to the American Horticultural Therapy Association, houseplants offer cognitive, psychological, and social benefits like increased self-esteem, and a reduction in stress, anxiety, and depression. The AHTA also found that keeping plants indoors helps improve attention and concentration. The University of Michigan further found that having plants around while studying or working might increase memory retention by 20%. Another study performed by Texas A&M found that “work performed under the natural influence of ornamental plants is normally of higher quality and completed with a much higher accuracy rate than work done in environments devoid of nature.” In short, there are a lot of benefits to adding a few houseplants to your home or office, far beyond the fact that they are pleasant to look at!