Writing earlier this week about my old conservatory and modern garden rooms and orangeries, made me yearn to start adding to my pitiful collection of house plants. I have such a poor record at keeping them alive in my current house as it is just a tad on the dark side. With no window ledges and few places to put them, I’m just reduced to a few small pots in the kitchen and one big speciman plant on my landing. And then I chanced upon this research about the health benefits of filling the house with plants and it’s made me that much more determined.
What Benefits You Might Say?
It’s a fact that during the winter months, we spend less time outdoors in the fresh air, and much more time indoors in heated rooms. While this helps us keep warm and feeling cosy, it’s not so good for our skin! So, being surrounded by plants is one way to remedy this. It’s been proven that they have air purifying and cleansing properties and that by surrounding ourselves with greenery we are nurturing both body and mind. Botanicals may be back on trend for 2019, but gone are the days where we view plants just for their aesthetic qualities.
Air Purifying Benefits
Research conducted by NASA as far back as the 1980’s shows that plants can reduce levels of pollutants found in the home. Pollutants such as benzene, formaldehyde and carbon monoxide which are found in household items like wallpaper, upholstery and certain cleaning products. So spending more time indoors means spending more time surrounded by these harmful toxins. Plants reduce the levels by breathing the toxins in alongside carbon dioxide and then replacing them with oxygen. If plants get NASA’s backing, they certainly get mine!
The Benefits of Raising Humidity Levels
Humidity levels drop during winter as we heat our homes with air-drying central heating. This dry air can be detrimental to skin and eyes, drying the outer layers and causing discomfort. And, low humidity levels have also been shown to increase the chance of catching a cold. Plants help to raise the humidity level by releasing water vapour through their leave. The bigger the leaves, the more effective it will be! Not only will this have positive physical effects, it will also have a knock-on positive effect for our moods as our health improves. So, big specimen plants are the way to go!
The Benefits to our Mental Health
As well as the physical benefits of plants on our everyday environment, they also have benefits for our mental health. Studies have found that just the presence of plants is enough to improve our mood – merely sitting in a room with plants is enough. Beyond this, they also reduce levels of the stress hormone cortisol, helping us to relax.
Lastly, the simple act of looking after plants brings us contentment, as nurturing any living being does. Taking care of plants promotes a sense of mindfulness, provoking an attention to the present. It’s a grounding experience that brings us back to the basics and a welcome respite from an otherwise hectic, modern life. As plants thrive in our care, the sense of reward leads us to nurture ourselves which fuels the health benefits further.
Thanks to Bloombox Club for this post and for the use of their images.
About Bloombox Club
Bloombox Club is the brainchild of ex-London psychologist, Dr Katie Cooper. After seeing the benefits plant care brought to her clients’ health, she has turned a hobby for wellbeing into a plant subscription service available to the masses. More than just a subscription service however, Bloombox Club offers its subscribers the chance to reconnect with nature while keeping up with the fast pace of modern life.
Far from delivering the plants and leaving the subscribers to get on with it, Bloombox Club provide in-depth plant care guides via their online ‘hub’, with information tailored to the many different plants on offer. So, whether you’re a seasoned green thumb looking to try out some new vegetation, or a complete gardening newb – Bloombox Club is waiting to give you the plant-keeping experience you deserve.