CREATE GREEN JOY INDOORS
Updated: Jan 30
"To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow." Audrey Hepburn
Creating a healing environment for ourselves indoors is even more important today than ever.
Having life blooming all around gives us hope and makes us feel connected to the healing powers of nature. You don't have to invest a lot of money in your indoor garden. Many containers can be reused. I use the orange Dunkin' Donuts coffee containers which resemble a Terra Cotta pot, put a few holes in the bottom, fill them with plain old dirt from the yard and Viola! I have a very affordable indoor window sill garden.
If you want to learn more about plants, I've found some very informative articles. From 10 Houseplants to Heal Your Health and Your Home by Bel Marra Health they suggest, "Not only do houseplants add some color and life into your home, but they also help improve air quality by removing volatile organic compounds (VOC’s) that hurt your health." Some of the plants they recommend for air purification are: Areca palm, Lady Palm, Bamboo Palm and English Ivy.
Aloe Vera also is an air purifier. I have used it to treat my own health conditions for about a year. A friend had suggested the benefits of Aloe Vera, and I finally bought a $5 plant at the local drug store to try it out. The plant has done really well on my window sill. I use it as a skin ointment. It never goes to waste. Why go to the drug store to buy Aloe Vera gel when you can grow it in your own home? I cut a piece off and keep it in a baggie in the refrigerator. The plant does bleed, but still remains an effective topical ointment. (Consult your doctor before using Aloe Vera internally - for side effects, click here.)
From 10 Incredible Health Benefits Of Aloe Vera by Live A Little Longer they give some surprising benefits of using Aloe Vera: it reverses the signs of aging, is an anti inflammatory, fights off dandruff and has antiviral properties.
Indoor Herbs for Tea
My favorite window sill herbs are Thai Basil (tastes like licorice), holy basil and thyme. After having a conversation with a fellow nature enthusiast while swimming I learned about pine needle tea (which is high in vitamin C). It wasn't flavorful enough alone, so now I pluck off some leaves from my window sill herb garden (and from lemon balm outdoors) and add them to the pine needle tea and really enjoy the flavor. I definitely feel better knowing I have an energy boost just a walk away.
"Learning to nurture a living plant may help lower anxiety, improve attention, and lessen the severity of depression." From Health Benefits of Houseplants by WebMD
Different parts of the plants act as filters to trap particles in the air. Violets, because of their textured leaves might work even better. Plants like Spider Plants can add moisture to the air, since plants absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen into the air. Plants like gerbera daisies, continue to release oxygen even after sunset. Try putting some of these potted plants near your bed and see if the extra oxygen helps you sleep better.
There is so much to explore about the healing properties of herbs and plants. Making tinctures, aquaponics, (Aquaponic Gardening: Growing Fish and Vegetables Together by Sylvia Bernstein) and Chinampas (floating gardens - if you are on Pinterest, click here for more info). I was amazed the first time I heard about the genius of growing plants over a fish tank with the plants naturally cleaning the water and giving the fish oxygen while the fish waste fertilized the plants. I plan to explore all the potential of the plant world as long as I live on God's green earth!
If you have any ideas about house plants you'd like to share, please comment below. I would love to hear from you.