In the words of the famous Roman philosopher, Marcus Tullius Cicero, “If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.” Much of this phrase is true because while a library can feed your mind, nature can feed your soul. So, if you’re thinking of applying this philosophy to your life, then why not bring a part of nature into your home by introducing easy-to-raise succulent houseplants.
Succulent plants have a unique adaptation that enables them to withstand minimal watering better than most houseplants. Their thick, fleshy leaves and stems, as well as their enlarged roots, allow them to retain water so that they do not need watering as frequently as other plants. They even get their name from this feature, as “succulent” is derived from the Latin word ‘succulentus’, which, according to the Online Etymology Dictionary means “having juice.”
Houseplants are a favourite addition to many homes because they can brighten the room and a person’s mood, and they are even known to lower the levels of indoor contaminants. But some houseplants are more advantageous than others. Succulents make some of the best houseplants for five essential reasons:
1. They can withstand dry, indoor conditions
Unlike most plants, succulents can tolerate low, relative humidity environments. They do not suffer the unpleasant side effects of dry air. This characteristic is especially important indoors, where air tends to be dryer, as well as during the winter months.
2. They can help purify the air
The article “Plants Clean Air and Water for Indoor Environments” describes NASA research using plants in a BioHome. This research suggests that succulents can remove many volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the air. Plants emit water vapour, which in turn generates a pumping action that pulls contaminated air down to the roots of the plant. The succulent converts these contaminants to plant food, thereby purifying the air of your home.
3. They improve the humidity of your home
Because plants release water, they can boost the humidity of your house. Increased moisture, in turn, can improve common health complaints including:
- Sore throat
- Common colds
- Dry cough
- Dry, itchy skin
4. They can produce fresh oxygen to your environment
Most plants release carbon dioxide at night, succulents, however, do not. Instead, they continue to produce oxygen. Assuming you aren’t allergic to the plants, the constant oxygen produced by succulents help freshen the air in your house and enhances your breathing. Here’s a tip: place succulents in areas of the house where you feel need extra fresh air, such as bathrooms or your kitchen.
5. They’re like living sculptures
Instead of decorating your house with paintings, candles, trinkets or small statues, why not decorate it with a living sculpture? The Italian poet Dante Alighieri once wrote that “Nature is the art of God.” If this is true, then succulents are Mother Nature’s sculptures. Their stark, unique, and robust leaves and stems, along with their arresting foliage or trailing greenery, gives them the facade of living works of art.