• Rose Smith

The Wonder of Plants


I have been always fascinated by plants, whether it be moss, trees, or cacti. They have always struck me as beautiful life forms that were static fixtures in homes and outdoor settings. In my first year of college, one of my first personal purchases was a dorm room cactus (who was lovingly named Albert), and my first college radio would proceed to be called “The Smol Cactus Radio Hour” (yes, I did use that spelling of “small” on my show). Nevertheless, plants deserve more credit than what is due for them, as they are not only wonderful aesthetically, but they also help the world around them. Scientific research has shown that plants have been able to help improve people’s moods, health, and even their wallets.

Aside from the fact that they provide life-giving oxygen in exchange for our carbon dioxide, according to Psychology Today, plants also have been directly linked to reducing stress levels and improving concentration. Another study concluded that the presence of house plants in different settings (such as hospitals, schools, and workplaces) has shown that people tend to have lower systolic blood pressure, increased attentiveness, increased productivity, increased attendance, increased well-being, and increased job satisfaction. The Ellison Chair of International Floriculture continues to laud the immense benefits of plants. According to the chair, plants also increase our sense of compassion. People who take care of plants are more likely to try to help others and reach out to other people. When people work with plants outside, they are more likely to be compassionate of the environment around them.

Plants can also improve the outlook and health of whole communities. According to the Ellison Chair of Floriculture, People are more likely to engage in physical activity when there is a park nearby. When there is a no-cost facility to move around in and is aesthetically pleasing, then residents are more likely to engage in physical activity and move around in the park. Then more people exercise, they are also less susceptible to illness and have a more positive outlook on life. The presence of beautiful parks also is correlative to lower crime rates; when more people see beauty in their neighborhood, they feel more inclined to want to keep the neighborhood beautiful and decreases incentives to commit crimes in the community.

You can even increase your own financial outlook when you invest in plants. On average, landscaping costs bring in 109% return for every dollar spent. Manicured lawns and gardens are prone to raising property values for potential buyers. Businesses can also spruce up their outlook when they add plants. Stores that have plants in their stores tend help enhance customer experience. Not only do customers see the plants as welcoming, they are more likely to stay longer, spend more money, and believe that the quality of goods is higher.

The power of plants is truly amazing. They not only help our personal stress levels, they help communities and businesses help as a whole. They can reduce stress, build compassion, and increase productivity. I would recommend to anyone to buy oneself a house plant, whether it be for the dorm, home, or office (if you are a scatterbrain like me, I would recommend a cactus; they are wonderfully low-maintenance). To conclude, I would also like to share an article I read yesterday on people sending love letters to the trees of Melbourne (it can be found here); It wonderfully encapsulates human appreciation towards the plant kingdom, and it will inevitably make your day a little brighter.

Rose Smith is the blog editor of Twenty-two Twenty-eight. When she isn’t writing about the world around her, she is often found listening to music, watching movies, and going on walks with her dogs.

You can find her on Instagram here and on Twitter here.