If you want to live longer, science says you should surround yourself with nature’s green goodness. Can’t move in search of greener surroundings? Start growing indoor plants!
I love plants. I love everything about having indoor greenery. If you do too, or even if you’ve never grown anything in your whole life, you can do it. I suggest starting with the list of plants NASA says will clean your air better than just about anything else. More on beginning to grow indoor plants later in the post.
Surrounding Yourself With Plants May Help You Live Longer
I remember my MawMaw (that’s Southern for Grandmother wink/wink) whenever I talk about plants. She could grow anything, It was more than a green thumb. She was a plant whisperer. I saw her pinch things off plants wherever she went and the next thing you know, it was in and around her home growing like Audrey II in Little Shop of Horrors. (If you’re too young to remember this 1986 movie, you’re missing out!)
Maybe she instinctively knew what it took Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health 8 years to prove.
Women in the U.S. who live in homes surrounded by more vegetation appear to have significantly lower mortality rates than those who live in areas with less vegetation,” the study says. “During an eight-year study period, there were fewer deaths among women who lived in the greenest surroundings—their mortality rate was 12% lower than those living in homes in the least green areas.
Sorry, Kermit. Turns out it’s actually easy being green.
Yes, the study is specifically talking about living in areas where the landscape is lush and green around your home. If you’re lucky enough to have a world of greenery outside your front door, that’s awesome! You’re lucky.
But if not, bring the green inside and load your home up with plants. You can teach yourself to become a “plant person” with only a few bucks and a little bit of education. It’s easy being green.
1. Choose a plant that’s hard for a brown thumb to kill. Choose a Peace Lily or Mother-In-Law’s Tongue aka Snake Plant. The Cast Iron Plant is another super resilient indoor plant.
2. Give then enough sunlight. Very often when you buy a plant somewhere like a Home Depot, the plant will have a little marker that tells you how much light it needs. However, a general rule of thumb for most indoor plants is about 8 hours a day. (That doesn’t mean all plants should get this amount, so, do your homework,)
3. Keep the soil moist. Stick your finger in the dirt to see how dry the plant is. Unless it’s specifically a plant that doesn’t like a lot of water, such as a succulent, keep your plants watered correctly. Don’t overwater! A couple of times a week is probably a good, general rule of thumb. When the water is coming out of the holes in the bottom of your crock or planter, you’re on the right track.
4. My best tip for growing indoor plants? Visit a website that’s rich with plant education. Gardner’s Path is a good one, but I’m sure there are thousands.
Live Longer to Work Longer?
Another study from Exeter University in the UK and the University of Queensland’s School of Psychology says that folks “in offices when plants were brought into the offices – one plant per square meter – employee performance on memory retention and other basic tests improved substantially.”
While they make no mention of how plants could make us live longer, they do say everyone in the office should be able to see a plant from their desk to get the full benefit.
What’s Your Favorite Indoor Plant?
Please share if you have a plant that is a rockstar at growing indoor. And if you have a green thumb and a quick minute, tell us your #1 tip for growing beautiful houseplants. We’d sure appreciate it.