Plants bring health, life to interior design


Keira Wingate / The DePaulia

Jessica Roberts has over 20 plants just on her window sillls alone. North-facing windows allow for consistent sunlight making it easy for growth and care.

Plants add a bright and earthy feeling to any space – welcoming a relaxed sense of breath and awakening. Imagine coming home to a place that has a crisp smell that makes every nose hair stand up and greenery so subtle yet eye-catching, it’ll bring a smirk to even the grumpiest face. 

Adding plants into any design space adds more than just style – they add health benefits to life. Studies show that indoor plants improve concentration and productivity by 15 percent. NASA has also done research that reveals houseplants can remove up to 87 percent of air toxins in just 24 hours. With plants being able to reduce stress levels and boost your mood – they are perfect for your home and office space, too. 

Roberts uses plants to help hide things in her apartment that she would rather not have shown. Keira Wingate / The DePaulia

Creating the perfect green haven will bring the sun into your life in more ways than one. Fill up window sills with a bunch of succulents, and drape vibrant ivy down curtain rails with a shimmering white curtain to go along with it. A side table in the living room styled with the perfect cup of hot coffee – with two scoops of sugar – and a snake plant add warmth to a dull morning. 

Whether it be fake or real plants, adding a splash of green to any setting is bound to attract attention. It can also hide the worst imperfections in a space or simply enhance the already-loved space. Take it from me – currently hiding a massive hole in the wall with a fake plant that was too cheap at Ross Dress For Less to not shove in my cart. 

“My favorite part of actual plants is the nurturing aspect, so I obviously prefer watching my real ones grow,” said Krista Plemmens, a 26-year-old who has propagated 10 plants so far. Propagating plants is an easy and inexpensive way to create new plants from other plants – even stems and leaves could work. 

“But, I actually have this one fake plant I bought as a joke years ago tucked into the corner of my room,” Plemmens said. “One of my roommates recently complimented it, saying it was her favorite plant of mine. I died [laughing] right then and there.”

Plemmens currently has 32 plants, which are all in her small bedroom. Keira Wingate / The DePaulia

Instead of decorating an entertainment center with everything Target has to offer in the home section, think of getting a radiant succulent that doesn’t need much care, but will give off oxygen and beauty all in the same day. Plants can also be cheap and can be displayed in any type of pot or container that catches the eye. Think of a glowing gold pot with specks of white and black next to the TV – inside is a mix of greenery that makes watching the news a tad bit more uplifting. 

“I use [plants] for pleasure and purpose,” said Jessica Roberts, a 28-year-old who owns 32 plants, not including the multiple propagations she has done. “I normally get a new plant for pleasure and then find a purpose in my design. But, ultimately, the plants rule the design since I only have two windows and they all need light.”

Plants aren’t going to be incredibly easy to take care of right away, but don’t let that discourage the desire to add more into any setting. I personally only have eight fake plants and even those are probably dying. There are a lot of easier plants to start off with, such as succulents, a spider plant or a snake plant that can handle a lot of neglect – and I mean a lot. Plants such as those don’t require tons of sun or water. If I happen to forget to water one for 12 days, it’ll still be there waiting for the love I should be giving it, but instead is going to my cat. “I personally get a lot of pride and ownership from keeping something alive,” Roberts said. “It grounds me, in a way, to use my hands to pot something. To watch the miracle of growth, happen in my propagations, especially in water when you can see all the roots and to be aware that nature knows so much more than I do.” 

Even if you don’t have a green thumb – which I do not – the benefits to adding plants into any setting are incredible in both appearance and health. Start small and make it up to the big plants that’ll tower over even the tallest of lamps. Eventually, the little jungle that gets created will ease everyday life in style and comfort. Just beware: My cat confuses plants with a litter box sometimes. Just some food for thought.