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Green Your Home With A Houseplant

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 0 0

Houseplants have been a common feature of many peoples homes and in recent decades have become more popular. Most people buy or grow plants indoors for aesthetic reasons, for their foliage or flowers.

Most people do not realise the health benefits a simple plant can have. Plants whether indoors or outside take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen. If they didn't we'd all slowly suffocate. A common myth from the seventies is that you should never have a houseplant in your bedroom as it used up all the oxygen so many people didn't bother with plants in their homes.

Having a plant in your office or home office will provide many benefits. Many of these were revealed in a NASA study carried out by Dr Wolverton. The various studies showed that many plants can filter the air of compounds toxic to humans such as VOCs thought to be the cause of sick building syndrome.

The buildings we live in and most everything we put in them leach varying amounts of different chemicals into the air. The medical profession now realise the cause of many respiratory problems stem from the poor air quality within our homes.

Literally hundreds of volatile organic chemicals leak into our indoor air in the form of gasses. Many of these are well known to cause health problems such as the classic sick building syndrome. Many of the effects of breathing in this cocktail of chemical gas are still unknown but many VOCs found in building are today classed as carcinogenic.

Some of the particularly nasty chemicals are Formaldehyde, Xylene/Toulene, Benzene, TCE, Chloroform, Ammonia, Alcohols and Acetone. You will be surprised to know that they leak into the air in your home from many everyday objects such as carpets, glues, paints, wallpaper, fabrics, plywood and particle board, upholstery to name a few. You may even be shocked to find even the simple tissue you blow your nose with releases Formaldehyde into the air. Even the water from your tap releases Chloroform. Is it any wonder we get ill so often.

Houseplants can literally clean the air, they scrub the toxic chemicals out of the air and fill your room with oxygen. They put moisture back into the air which is great for our dry centrally heated rooms. They can even take dust out of the air but will not unfortunately go as far as doing the dusting for you.

There are also many psychological effects. They promote relaxation, reduce blood pressure and anxiety as well as help with concentration and memory. Feeling a bit under the weather? Houseplants have also been shown to reduce symptoms associated with colds such as tiredness, coughing, sneezing and sore throats.

Unfortunately many people inadvertently end up killing our little green friends. Luckily there are some plants that can withstand the onslaught of the least green fingered of us. Try growing a spider plant or devils ivy, both do not mind being over watered, under watered and can tolerate low light conditions, great for your work desk.

Some other plants you might want to consider which are also quite tough include English ivy (Hedera helix), the Peace lilly (Spathiphyllum wallisii) which has long lasting white flowers. Foliage plants such as the Boston fern (Nephrolepis exaltata) and Pot Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum morifolium) is also a commonly available pot plant.

You can be even more ecologically friendly by getting a green fingered friend to grow you a plant fro ma cutting. Why not reuse a plant pot rather than buying a new one. As a bonus you will also be helping to cut CO2 levels as plants work just like trees. You only need one plant in a room for it to have positive effects.



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