If you're reading this on Jan. 10, happy Houseplant Appreciation Day (yep, it's a thing). But here at Toad we appreciate our houseplants every day, especially after these many months spent at home. Besides making excellent roommates/listeners/friends, here are a few other reasons to love 'em.
- Less stress - Many studies have shown the stress-reducing effects (like lower heart rate and blood pressure) of having houseplants. In general, indoor plants and mental health have repeatedly proven to go hand in hand. Potting soil even contains microbes that have been found to mirror the effects of antidepressants, so go ahead and get your hands dirty. Yay science!
- Improved healing - Think about it... From the earliest times, people have used plants to heal and promote good health (think aloe, chamomile, ginger, echinacea, to name a few). Recent research even suggests using potted plants and flowers as effective complementary medicine for surgical patients, and that horticulture therapy helps patients in health facilities. We'll just leave you with this great quote we found from Michael J. Balick, "Mother Nature is a brilliant chemist." She's got many talents.
- Productivity boosts - Good thing our houseplants have become our best coworkers in this past year. Studies have shown that people with plants close to their workspaces worked faster, performed better, and even took fewer sick days than those without.
- Fresher air - The science on this one is hotly debated, but NASA research has shown that certain houseplants can clean the air and remove toxins from your space, so we're going with it. Improved air quality leads to all types of benefits like less headaches and fewer skin and respiratory ailments. The best air purifying plants (and a few of our favorites) include Snake Plants, English Ivy, Spider Plants, Weeping Figs, Chrysanthemums, Areca Palms, Dragon Trees, and Aloe Vera. Add some green to your space and breathe deeply. Ahhh.
- A sense of accomplishment - Many of us at Toad practice plant parenthood, and there's a real sense of accomplishment to keeping something alive (and even thriving). Being able to nurture something has been shown to improve quality of life, so go ahead and sing to your green friends, polish their leaves, and share your deepest secrets. No one's judging.
So, what are the best indoor plants? There are lots to love (and you really can't go wrong), but here are a few favorites from team Toad.