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The snake plant is a common houseplant typically placed in homes for decorative purposes or to maintain feng shui. It’s a popular plant among beginner gardeners as it requires very little maintenance while offering numerous benefits and is also pleasing to the eye.
Some gardeners consider the snake plant a ‘boring’ plant because of its stiff structure and lack of flashy colors. However, there’s a lot more to this plant than meets the eye. Here’s a quick look at the benefits of growing snake plants in your home.
What are Snake Plants?
Native to Africa and Asia, snake plants are easy to recognize by their sword-shaped leaves that have an almost artificial look to them. It’s an evergreen plant that’s also known as ‘mother-in-law’s tongue’ and ‘Viper’s bowstring hemp’ and is categorized as a highly resilient succulent that can grow up to several feet.
While this plant does have many health benefits and is relatively safe, it can be toxic if ingested. Its leaves contain a type of poison that, if consumed, can cause numbness and swelling of the tongue. If you have or plan on having snake plants in your home, make sure to place them away from animals and children.
Benefits of Snake Plants
As mentioned earlier, the snake plant has various benefits that have been proven through research and studies conducted by top organizations. If you’re wondering whether this houseplant is for you and you’re looking for an indoor plant that’s easy to grow and maintain, check out these benefits:
1. It Produces Oxygen
According to a study conducted by Harvard University and published in the Harvard University Extension, the snake plant produces high amounts of oxygen. In fact, it’s one of the most oxygen-producing indoor plants, along with the pothos and ficus.
2. It Filters the Air
Snake plants have the ability to filter the air inside your home, even at night, giving you clean, purified air to breathe! One of the things that makes this plant so unique is that it actually converts carbon dioxide into oxygen while you sleep, making it an ideal houseplant for your bedroom.
3. It Can Be Used to Relieve Minor Ailments
Throughout history, the snake plant has been used in various countries around the world to treat certain ailments. In Malaysia, it has been used to treat minor ailments such as swellings, fever, boils, and ear pain. It’s believed that this plant can:
- Reduce inflammation
- Strengthen your immune system
- Help rid your body of parasites
- Help relieve headaches
- Heal minor burns and skin wounds
- Help regulate blood pressure
4. It Can Boost Your Mental Health
Scientific research shows that snake plants can be used for horticultural therapy for mental treatment as it has certain therapeutic effects. It absorbs the toxins in the air which can help enhance your mood.
5. It Eliminates Toxic Pollutants
As mentioned above, snake plants can remove cancer-causing toxic pollutants in the air, such as carbon dioxide, formaldehyde, xylene, toluene, and trichloroethylene.
Since these plants can release oxygen while also adding moisture into the air, they can also help to reduce the impact of certain allergens such as dander and dust that are airborne. As a result, these plants can protect you from airborne allergies.
6. It’s Easy to Care For
The snake plant is an extremely low-maintenance plant and one of the easiest houseplants in the world to care for. It can thrive in the harshest conditions, full sun, full shade, or even without water, so don’t worry if you forget to water it!
7. Used for Feng Shui
Many gardeners believe that the snake plant isn’t ideal for feng shui. However, this is not the case. If it’s placed carefully in the right position, it provides purifying and protective energy to your home or workplace.
Spiky plants like snake plants are believed to be very effective against negative Chi, in feng shui. Their spikiness makes them aggressive, however, so you’ll need to place them in areas where they will be out of the way. The ideal spots to place them would be the Southern, Eastern, and Southeastern corners of your home or indoor space.
Disadvantages of Snake Plants
Now that we’ve looked at the amazing benefits of snake plants, let’s also take a quick look at their disadvantages.
- It grows slowly.
- It’s difficult to propagate. This plant is quite delicate so it can be difficult to propagate.
- Snake plants are toxic for pets and humans.
- Many people tend to believe that snake plants bring bad luck. If you’re someone who believes in good or bad luck, this plant may not be a good choice for you.
- Snake plants are quite prone to fungal attacks, mainly on their leaves.
If you’re considering having snake plants in your home but you’re not really sure about it, this article can help you decide! As you can see, snake plants aren’t just aesthetically pleasing, but they also offer excellent health benefits and require hardly any maintenance at all. What’s not to love!