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Do you ever get the sense that your home is missing something? Maybe it’s a pop of color or a sense of wellbeing that your home is missing. Believe it or not, houseplants provide your home with both a pop of color and add a cozy feel to your space. Placing plants indoors comes with many benefits.
Indoor plants not only make your living space more inviting and luxurious, they also make your home’s air healthier. Check out some of our favorite ways to freshen up your home décor with a touch of green.
Ten modern, air-filtering, long-living houseplants include:
- Dracaena – is a tall, full houseplant or tree with one or more trunks from which fantastic leaves in green, yellow and gold emerge that can have touches of pink or red around the edges. There is a wide choice of leaves, ranging from small, narrow and pointy, to large and soft. What all the species have in common is that they’re amazing plants that suit any interior style, and they’re easy to look after.
- Spider plant – produce a rosette of long, thin, arched foliage that is solid green or variegated with white. These easy-to-grow houseplants look especially nice in a hanging basket and were a favorite in Victorian-era households.
- Fig – This native to west Africa is grown indoors for it’s attractive semi-lobed and oval shaped leaves, which all seem to grow to different sizes. It is a slow growing plant that may take up to 10 -15 years to reach full maturity, but after 3 or 4 years of growth it starts to become an attractive tree like ornamental house plant.
- Devil’s ivy – also known as Scindapsus, can grow in all directions. This houseplant stands out thanks to its heart-shaped satiny leaves with silver, pale green, yellow or whitish spots, or a flame pattern. it’s also a reliable companion: if looked after well, this domestic wonder can grow very old and remain beautiful. The plant also gives something back in return for your loving care: according to the NASA Clean Air Study, Devil’s Ivy is one of the plants that helps improve the air quality in your home.
- Lady palm – sometimes called the bamboo palm or miniature fan palm, is the best suited of all the fan palms to indoor cultivation.
- Ficus – ficus genus of ornamental plants is a range of species which are very popular for growing indoors, whether in a house, conservatory, office, or hotel. They are not hard plants to grow; most people just above beginner level can grow and maintain them very well.
- Aloe vera – is an easy, attractive succulent that makes for a great indoor companion. Aloe vera plants are useful, too, as the juice from their leaves can be used to relieve pain from scrapes and burns when applied topically.
- Succulents – the perfect plant for forgetful gardeners and they’ve skyrocketed in popularity in the past few years. With the right info, succulents are easy to care for, and succulent gardens and terrariums can brighten any indoor space.
- Peace lily – also known as closet plants, are a popular choice for offices and homes. When it comes to indoor plants, peace lily plants are some of the easiest to care for.
- Snake plant – are one of the most popular and hardy houseplants. An architectural species, it features stiff, upright leaves that range from one to eight feet tall depending on the variety.
Plants offer our visual senses an essence of charm. With so many variations available, there is a species for everyone. Popular houseplant types include succulents, flowering plants and even herbs. Different plants require different types of care, so be sure to research what species will work best in your home.
Live plants are important home accessories and — sometimes they can even become key design elements on their own. Next time you see an unused corner or empty shelf in your home, consider bringing in a plant to fill the space.
Plants can serve as functional design elements. Many homes in today’s suburban neighborhoods have great rooms. While most homeowners love the idea of a great room, it can also be a curse; it’s hard to know where one functional space ends and the next one begins. Large indoor shrubs or trees are the perfect solution. Use them as room dividers or to flank an area to create a more restricted passage.
By using a plant for this purpose you infuse life into the space and avoid making the divider feel too heavy. If you’re daring, place a potted tree in the middle of large open area to create a soft room divider. The sheer size and shape of this potted tree adds a real punch to this interior.
Plants can balance out your design. The right plant in the wrong place will throw off the look and feel of an entire room. It might be too small in a larger space, or simply have too much volume and overwhelm nearby design elements. When selecting a large houseplant, consider volume as well as overall height and width. A really full tree in front of a window may block too much natural light. And you don’t want to have to brush aside fronds from a nearby plant to carry on a conversation with your friends.
By taking height, width and volume into consideration, you’ll select a plant that fills the space perfectly. For example, this tall, full tree is used to balance out the traditional writing desk and accessories on the other side of the fireplace. Proportion isn’t always about items the same size; it’s more about balancing weight.
Plants soften architectural elements. Natural materials provide textures that are difficult to recreate. Sometimes there is no substitute for the real thing. Here a structured planting of reeds plays an important role in softening the stone wall and wood columns. This concept might be used around large windows or on either side of a front door. Wherever the location, the softness of the planting keeps the hard surfaces from overwhelming the space and making it feel cold.
Plants fill a corner with life. Portland designer Garrison Hullinger is a dear friend of mine and is great at using plants in his interiors. For those corners in your home that don’t seem right for a piece of furniture, consider a large plant to fill the space. By placing this plant in the corner behind the chair, the room feels intimate without being crowded by extra furniture. This type of arrangement works best when the location is out of high-traffic areas.
Being surrounded by nature improves concentration and increases memory retention, this is backed by many university studies across the world. By adding plants to your indoor space, you will feel a sense of calmness and experience more productivity. Studies also show that plants improve healing by lowering blood pressure and relieving symptoms of pain, anxiety and fatigue.
So How Does Your Personal Environment Impact Your Wellbeing?
Your home and work environment can:
- Influence your mood. For example, research studies reveal that rooms with bright light, both natural and artificial, can improve depression and anxiety.
- Impact your behavior and motivation to act. For example, a messy hall with shoes, bags, and other stuff may invite you to drop what you are carrying right there, whereas a clean entry and adequate storage will encourage you to take the time to put the item away.
- Facilitate or discourage interactions in your family and with guests. For example, an inviting space with comfortable chairs can encourage people to sit and chat.
- Create or reduce stress, which impacts not only your emotional, but also physical health, including your longevity!
A study by NASA scientists confirmed that specific plant species purify air quality. Plants go beyond utilizing carbon dioxide to produce more oxygen for humans’ to breathe. Plants also remove low levels of chemicals such as carbon monoxide and formaldehyde from indoor environments just through the leaves alone.
Feng Shui Your Health Area
In feng shui, each home or office has specific areas (as defined by the bagua, or the feng shui energy map) that are responsible for different areas of one’s life. Your health, of course, depends on the overall energy of the whole space, but there are two areas that are connected on a deeper energy level to the state of your well-being. The first one is the center of your home or office, and the second one is the so-called Health & Family bagua area.
There are numerous feng shui cures – both traditional and modern – that you can apply to improve your health. From the simple use of Wood and Water elements colors to a Laughing Buddha sculpture or the use of the famous feng shui lucky bamboo plant, choose what works best in your space.