By now, you may have the perfect work-from-home set up, complete with dual monitors, a hidden snack stash and a rainbow pack of sticky notes. But there might be one very important item you are forgetting, and it may even help improve your productivity. Believe it or not, we’re talking about indoor plants. Beside the obvious fact that a little pop of green is the perfect accent to every room, studies show that plants have many mental and physical health benefits!
Clean air warriors
Plants should be everyone’s best friend as they work hard to take in the carbon dioxide we expel and produce the oxygen we need. In your work space, your green friend will continuously refresh and filter the air. In fact, a study by NASA shows that houseplants can filter up to 87% of nasty toxins in the air, every 24 hours! This makes the air in your house cleaner and safer to breath, leading to other long-term health benefits. These include lower blood pressure, improved sleep quality and less anxiety and nervous reaction. Everyone could use more of that—especially this year!
That’s right! New studies have shown that houseplants can improve your productivity and concentration by up to 15%. They help reduce stress levels and promote positivity which, in turn, increases the output of employees. Plants, especially wide-leaf plants, absorb background noise, also improving productivity. If you’re in a work-from-home situation with other people, you would benefit from a few plants to help block out some of those distractions.
Happy plant, happy you
Humans have a special connection to nature. It’s known as biophilia. That’s why the sun on our face or the breeze in your hair fills you with a sense of calm and happiness. Being surrounded by nature in your home and office triggers these same feelings. Because of these soothing feelings, plants have been shown to help with loneliness and depression. Taking the time to care and nurture a living thing gives us purpose and a reward, further promoting positivity. In a constantly shifting world, we could all use a little green buddy to look after and put a smile on our faces.
So what indoor plant is best for you?
Here is a quick list of the top five houseplants that are the perfect home-office companions.
Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)
Peace Lilies are beautiful, easy and tell you what they need. The wide, glossy, dark green leaves will wilt when they need water, giving you a nudge when you need to care for them. They deal well with over-watering for those eager carers and prefer lower light. You’ll also be rewarded for your love and care with a beautiful long, white flower every now and then.
Snake Plant or Mother-in-law Tongue (Sansevieria)
This funky plant is very versatile when it comes to light, adjusting to grow in either large or low amounts of light. It’s used to living through droughts so it’s okay to forget about it for a little while. Snake plants have also been shown to filter out nasty chemicals such as benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, xylene, and toluene, so you can breathe easy having this in your home office.
ZZ Plant (Zamioculcas Zamiifolia)
The prehistoric ZZ plant is the perfect companion for those not-so-green thumb people. Their fat stalks and thick leaves store a large amount of water so they rarely need watering. They can also withstand extended periods of low light, making it the best plant to accidentally neglect. It will forgive you.
Devil’s Ivy (Epipremnum aureum)
This evergreen vine adapts well to most home-office conditions. Low light or direct light will just determine the colour of the leaves. It has white splotchy leaves for a bit of fun and depending on the size, can be trained to grow around or up poles.
Monstera (Swiss Cheese Plant)
If you’re looking for something a bit bigger to fill the corner in your room, look no further than a Monstera. They lush green plant grow quickly, and only need water 1-2 weeks. If you let it grow big enough, it will produce small fruit that you can eat! Think a weird cross between a banana, passionfruit and pineapple! All of these plants will make the perfect little work buddy. They will help your efficiency, body, mind and soul, as long as you give them the little bit of love they deserve.