There are so many great reasons to having plants in your home, not only do they look incredible and can transform a space from feeling drab to feeling lived in, they also offer some amazing health benefits. It can be a little trial and error to ensure you find the right spot for your choice of plant, but some are more temperamental than others. This handy guide will give you some pointers on not only how to care for each plant, but also how they can help you live your best, healthy life.
Plants for a good nights sleep
Here we should be looking for plants that produce oxygen at night, rather than in the day time, this can help reduce insomnia as oxygen offers a calming effect. Other plants can filter pollutants and airborne spores, helping to keep your airways clear and not disturbing sleep.
Dypsis lutescens, also known as golden cane palm, yellow palm, butterfly palm, or bamboo palm, is an easy evergreen to grow, and it can grow up to 2 metres if you allow it the space.
It is a natural humidifier so can blitz away moisture, it also absorbs and eliminates toxic air pollutants and also emits oxygen at night.
This plant prefers filtered sunlight, moderate humidity so a mist every few days will suffice, and water well throughout summer but reduce in the winter months.
Styling in a basket is simple yet effective as it carries on the earthy textures, find a basket for styling here, this one is made from dried palm leaves.
Most people will have been bought one of these orchids as a gift, or possibly gifted one themselves. Group these with fellow rainforest plants or mossy ferns. They emit health giving oxygen at night and removes xylene, a toxin found in some paints and varnishes.
They prefer bright, filtered light, moderate humidity with occasional misting, and to encourage new blooms, cut any faded stems above the second horizontal band on the stem. They also do not need compost and are grown in bark or moss . bath your plant in rainwater or distilled water for a few hours to keep the aerial roots moist. My Nan's tip has always been to water with cold tea.
Also known as Schlumbergera, this not so cactus looking cactus flowers in the winter, hence it's name. It's an easy grower, that will also emit oxygen while you sleep. It's another clean air provider too, removing airborne toxins.
This guy likes indirect sunlight, moderate humidity with a regular misting. Never leave to soak as this plant hates to be wet, just make sure the compost is moist.
Post flower, move this festive friend to a cooler area of your home and cut back on watering until spring, where you can move back into the warm.
Plants to reduce stress
Biophilia is definitely prevalent trend at the moment, having an innate desire as humans to connect with nature. Our lives are powered by tech, artificial lights and consumerism, so taking the time to connect with the living world around us can help reduce any stresses of life. The soil plants grow in contains microbes, which have been dubbed 'outdorphins' and can work as natural anti-depressants, helping us produce more serotonin which makes us feel happy.
Choosing this easy to care for hanging plant can minimise stress in your life. This type of cactus has no spines and is n epiphyte, meaning it grows on other plants but is not parasitic. The mistletoe cactus grows in the rainforest and loves humidity. It will live quite happily in your bathroom, place up high so the stems can grow nice and low. A hanging basket is perfect for this, find a handwoven palm leave basket here.
This guy likes indirect, diffused light, it likes a lot of misting with the occasional shower. Make sure the roots aren't sitting in water, and ease up on watering in the winter months.
It's called the mistletoe cactus as it's small white flowers are followed by mistletoe-like white berries.
Fill your room with this jasmine like scent with hints of vanilla and coconut, for an instant lift. The pretty star shaped flowers are really eye catching and they produce little drops of nectar from their flowers in the morning - it tastes very sweet.
This beauty likes bright, indirect light, moderate humidity and enjoys being moist in spring and summer. In winter you can dry it out between watering.
Ensure you plant in free training soil with bark chips. Don't prune as part years stems do flower too!
Plants for the work space
Plants have been proven to boost productivity and increase well being, so having them around your workspace makes a lot of sense. It doesn't have to be much, an easy to care for cactus would even do the trick.
If you're lucky enough to have a sunny desk, a collection of succulents and cacti can make an interesting arrangement. There are so many varieties, and they can withstand a lot of neglect so it's not a problem if you aren't in the office full time anymore. Keep watering to a minimum so you don't drown them, there are so many colours, textures and shapes of echeveria, so there's sure to be one for you.
They work really well in terrariums, as they can dry out easily when potted alone. Grouping a few together looks aesthetically pleasing and also keeps maintenance to a minimum.
Also known as the zig zag cactus. If you don't have any space on your desk, this guy can happily live hanging from some shelves or in a woven plant hanger. They live happily out of direct sunlight, and can be moved into a cooler space in the winter months to encourage flowering after autumn. They have lovely yellow flowers and smell beautiful.
Also known as a ZZ plant, Zamioculcas Zamifolia is one of my personal faves as its a hardy little one that can survive in bright sunlight or shady conditions, and tolerates neglect. Its also an air cleanser and an effective oxygenator, improving the indoor atmosphere.
Only water sparingly, when the top soil dries out, and in the winter only water once a month. Trim back any unruly stems to maintain a nice shape, best done in spring.
Plant tip: For plants that need drainage holes, it's a good idea to have a plate underneath the pot to ensure water doesn't leak everywhere. The varying sizes of our handmade metal trays mean they are perfect for pots of all sizes. Find them here.
Which plant will work best in your home? Let us know in the comments!