It’s nice to have beautiful plants that make us feel happy when we look at them but plants can do so much more than sit pretty! Here are some useful plants that you can grow at home.
1. Aloe Plant
Topical Medicine/Healing Properties
Aloe plant has been used for thousands of years for its healing properties. The gel of the plant can be used as topical medicine for minor skin burns, cuts, for inflamed or damaged skin due to eczema or other skin conditions. Another great use for the aloe plant is that it can help to monitor the air quality in your home. It helps clear the air from pollutants found in chemical cleaning products. Aloe leaves will develop brown spots when the amount of harmful chemicals in the air becomes excessive. Thank you, aloe… that’s so kind of you!
The aloe plant grows best with lots of sun, so keep it in the sunny rays and let it heal you.
2. Rubber Tree
Rubber trees are also excellent plants for purifying the air in your home and eliminating toxins. Air, including contaminants, absorbs through the rubber tree’s large leaves. Once the plant absorbs the contaminants, it gets deposited in the soil. Once in the soil, they encounter microbes that live around the rubber plant’s roots. These microbes break down the contaminants and convert them to nutrients for the plant.
Rubber trees are one of the easiest plants to grow, thriving even in dim lighting and cooler climates.
3. Citronella Plant
Also known as the mosquito plant, the citronella plant is a member of the geranium family. When the leaf is crush and rubbed on the skin, it helps to naturally repel mosquitoes and smells oh so yummy! Growing and caring for a citronella plant is really easy: they can grow indoor or outdoor and they love to have 6 hours of sunlight everyday.
4. Prickly Pear
You may have seen these on the menu of a Mexican restaurant as ‘nopales’, or know them as paddle cactus, or opuntia. The prickly pear can be seen in growing wild in Mexico, and throughout the southwest. The prickly pear cactus may not seem like the most nurturing plant in the world, with its famous spines, but it has a ton of health benefits. This includes its ability to lower cholesterol levels, boost the immune system, decrease the risk of diabetes, improve the digestive process, stimulate bone growth, strengthen blood vessels, reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s, prevent certain cancers, aid in weight loss, and reduce inflammation. The cactus contains high levels of fiber, vitamin C, carotenoids, and betalains (which are a rare type of antioxidant).
The prickly pear has flat oval leaves (paddles) that can be boiled or grilled and used for salads, tacos, salsas, or soups. The fruit can be peeled, sliced, and juiced or eaten raw.
These plants thrive on sunlight and do best in warm exposure climates – duh – they are cacti!
Tell us what your favorite useful plant is!