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Now's the perfect time to bring home a new houseplant and to dress the office, as well as give some care to our existing ones. Greening indoors! As a versatile decorating tool, indoor plants offer endless scope with great effect but it is the air purifying qualities and the fact that they bring oxygen and positive energy into the home and workspace make them a must have.

We found this handy reference image
We found this handy reference image

Gone are the days of having the same plant for year and years. As you change your décor plants can get replaced or moved around bringing new energy to the scheme. Flowering plants should be considered the same as a bunch of cut flowers, just more economical, to be thrown out when the flowers go and new ones brought in.

Houseplants should be more than just a trend or fashion. The benefits they bring should in fact make us consider them a necessity rather than just décor. Bringing plants indoors is actually good for your health.

 

Benefits of indoor plants

They give an assist our breathing – During the day indoor plants absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen which we need. Orchids, succulents and bromeliads are ideal in bedrooms as they take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen at night making them ideal for use in the bedroom to keep the oxygen flowing at night. In addition all plants indoors add moisture back into the air indoors as part of their breathing. This helps us in a number of ways especially during the drier winter and spring months.

Removing toxic particles from the air is just another cool benefit most people don't know about. We found a handy reference image online along with this list of the top 10 plants for removing indoor pollutants, according to NASA.

The NASA list includes: Peace lily (Spathiphyllum), Golden Pothos (Scindapsus), English Ivy (Hedera), Fall Chrysanthemum, Gerbera, Snake Plant (Sansevieria), Bamboo Palm, Dragon Plant (Dracaena) and Spider Plant (Chlorophytum). The NASA researchers also recommend one potted plant per 30M2 of indoor space.

They help you work better - A number of studies with both students and workers reveal that studying or working in the presence of plants improves concentration and memory retention by up to 20%. Productivity also improves with work normally of higher quality and completed with a much higher accuracy rate than work done in environments devoid of nature.

What do they need?

Make sure that the plant receives sufficient light. Indoor plants are categorised as high, medium or low light plants and they need to be positioned in the correct area in the home to accommodate their requirements. In general the first one and a half meters from a clear window constitutes high light.
Ensure good air circulation, but avoid draughts and water thoroughly less often, rather than little amounts at regular intervals. 

 

Peace Lilies grow in low light
Peace Lilies grow in low light
The Spear Plant has shades of silver and green mixed
The Spear Plant has shades of silver and green mixed
Bamboo Palms need high light
Bamboo Palms need high light
Ficus will grow on a patio too!
Ficus will grow on a patio too!

 

Keep them fabulous

Over-watering is the single biggest factor that causes the loss of houseplants. The soil should always be allowed to dry out between watering. TIP: Most indoor plants only need to be watered every ten days to alternate week!

Feed indoor plants with Nitrosol or Multifeed Classic once a month for best results.
Remember that they release and absorb all the benefits for us through their leaves. Keep them dust free with a regular shower of tepid water to allow for maximum efficiency.

Most pests on indoor plants can be eradicated with ease by applying the ready-to-use BioKill
The most common are scale insects identified by brown bumps on the stems, spreading to the leaves and Mealy bug which produces a white cotton-wool like substance on the plants.

Problems such as brown leaf tips, yellowing and dropping of leaves are linked to incorrect watering or incorrect light position. 

Famous last words:

  • Make sure that the houseplants you already have, are well watered. Not over or under watered.
  • Next, give them a special treat today... a little fertiliser.
  • Stand by your houseplant and breathe in the air! It's giving off oxygen ... just for you!
  • Teach your kids about growing and caring for plants using indoor plants.
  • Give a houseplant to a friend, especially the elderly or shut-ins.
  • Talk to your plants. Yes, people believe plants respond positively when you talk to them!

 

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