Aside from houseplants being beautiful and aesthetically pleasing, they have much more to offer. Certain houseplants can remove and reduce toxins from our homes; some of my favorites are: the spider plant, peace lily, snake plant, Boston fern, and bamboo palm. Many homes and small apartments have toxins that are come from the carpet, paint, cleaning products, synthetic building materials, upholstery, and more. They cause us to have allergies, eye and throat irritation, and even long term respiratory effects. This is called indoor air pollution, most popularly and specifically called formaldehyde, which most of us have in our homes. Indoor plants that purify air don’t defeat all air pollution, but they definitely help reduce it.
Caring for Indoor Plants that Purify Air
This is for my plant moms, and soon to be plant moms. This is also for the person who desperately wants to learn how to keep their plants alive, and may have already tried and failed. If you currently have plants, you already know they can be high maintenance, time consuming, and expensive. The beautiful thing about caring for plants is the self-love and empathy practice you experience. Experts even say that plants improve mood, health, and productivity. Caring for plants activates grounding within ourselves and nothing beats the excitement of seeing your plants flourish over time.
Daily Air-Purifying Plant Care
Daily care for your plants should consist of sunlight. Get to know your plant and how much sun exposure it needs. Most of the time basic care information is located on the tags upon purchase. As long as you know the name of your plant, you can do online research or even pick up a few books. Some plants are low light, while others require lots of light and are happiest near windows. If your plant looks limp in a hallway, experiment by putting it in more sunlight for a couple of days and look for a noticeable change. Try spritzing your plant with a spray bottle daily, making sure you spritz the top of the leaves and a small blanket over the soil. A personal touch I like to incorporate is talking to my plants.
Weekly Air-Purifying Plant Care
Make sure that you actually water your plant, pick one day a week where you pour water into your plant pot to reach the base and roots of your plant. Pruning your plant is also something that should be done weekly, trimming and picking off dead leaves or parts of the plants that are no longer alive. Lastly, I recommend giving your plant a light shake every week. Shaking your plant keeps the soil from getting clumped together, it wakens the roots and ensures that all parts receive water and nutrients.
Monthly Air-Purifying Plant Care
The same way dust collects on our counter corners and bookshelves, it’s also on our plants. About once a month, take a damp sponge and gently wipe your plant. Seasonally (every 3 months or so), your plant should be fertilized and re-potted with new soil. When I was a new plant mom, I made the mistake of waiting too long to repot my plant and replace the soil. I began to notice tiny gnats all around my apartment, I soon realized they were coming from the old soil in my plants. Don’t make the same mistake as I did pretty birds, change your soil!
Caring for plants can be such a beautiful experience if you are willing to learn. I one day hope to have a garden full of fruits and vegetables, so this is my entry to the green thumb gardener’s life. The information I’ve given is just a basic guide and there is so much more to know about plants individually. They are kind of like people, in a way that they’re all different and unique.
Image Credit: @oliveinwanderland
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