Not only do they add beauty and greenery to your home, houseplants have incredible environmental, health, and mental benefits as well. Their natural processes help to increase humidity levels, reduce airborne dust levels, increase oxygen in the air while reducing carbon dioxide, they help to filter certain pollutants such as benzene and nitrogen dioxide (found in cigarette smoke), and houseplants have been known to help improve sleep, concentration and memory acuity.
Houseplants don't have to be intimating though. These 5 plants are easy to grow and are a great starting point if you would like to bring plants into your indoor space.
1. Lucky bamboo
(Dracaena sanderiana) Technically the lucky bamboo isn't a bamboo plant at all, although it highly resembles one. Lucky bamboo grows easily in water and the canes of the plant look a lot like bamboo canes but it has no connection to Japanese culture. Keep the roots submerged in water at all times, and if possible water with collected rainwater or bottled mineral water once in a while. Typical tap water is fluoridated and chlorinated and can cause damage, stunting growth over time.
2. Snake plant
(Sansevieria trifasciata) Also known as mother-in-law's tongue, the Snake Plant is an extremely forgiving houseplant. They can be neglected for weeks at a time and their thick leaves and architectural shape mean they continue to look good. The Snake Plant can survive low light levels, is drought tolerant, has is susceptible to very few insect pests.
3. Spider plant
(Chlorophytum comosum) Like the others on this list, the spider plant is incredibly easy to care for. They prefer cooler temps and like their roots to be pretty cramped in the container. Repot only when their flesh roots become visible above the soil surface. The spider plant gets its name from the spider-like plants, or spiderettes, which develop from the flowers and grow into new plants. In mature plants, the flowers will emerge in spring as day length increases. Gardening Know How walks you through propagating new plants using the spiderettes if you're looking to expand your houseplant collection.
4. Peace lily
(Spathiphyllum wallisii) A favorite amongst houseplant enthusiasts, the Peace Lily is known for its incredible ability to filter and cleanse the air. According to DIY & Crafts, NASA has found it to reduce indoor air pollution by up to 60% and is one of their top 10 plants recommended to improve air quality. Peace Lillies prefer medium, indirect light and will droop when it needs water. They do not like cool temperatures though and do best when the ambient air temp is up over 55 degrees. An occasional white bloom makes them a beautiful addition to any home.
(Philodendron sp.) Philodendrons are some of the most tolerant, popular, and durable of all the houseplant species. They prefer medium light intensities but will do alright in low-level conditions. Keep them out of direct sunlight and let the soil dry out between waterings especially during the winter when plant growth slows down. Some varieties are extremely fast-growing, the climbing varieties are known for this; pinch off new growth as needed to keep the plant size manageable.