Plants for Your Health

We're past the late spring/early summer when many of us are beginning to think about what to plant on our back decks or in our window boxes. But there's no reason we can't start planning what to grow indoors. Plants are beautiful, they make us feel better, and they can even clean up our environment. Some plants are great for removing chemicals such as formaldehyde, benzine, carbon monoxide, and ammonia from the air. And even plants that aren't top of the line air-purifiers release oxygen, moisten the air (great in winter!), and improve memory and concentration. One randomized clinical trial even indicated that the presence of plants can help people recover faster from surgery.

Here's a NASA-recommended list of air-purifying houseplants. And if your home doesn't get a lot of direct sunlight, you might like this list of plants suitable for low light conditions. If you think you're incapable of taking care of plants, pretend you're an optimist and check out this list of hard-to-kill houseplants.

The Central Library has a few books on houseplants for the novice urban gardener. Consider the following titles:

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