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National Indoor Plant Week: Benefits, tips to having houseplants

3News Meteorologist Matt Wintz is not only a dad to three kids, he's also a "plant dad,” and recently talked with a horticulturist from Costa Farms.

CLEVELAND — Sprucing up your space has been popular during the pandemic, whether that's at home or within your workspace. And you've probably noticed plants being a hot commodity – specifically, houseplants.

Today kicks off National Indoor Plant Week – not to be confused with National Houseplant Appreciation Day – which falls on January 10th each year.

National Indoor Plant Week is honored during the third week in September and promotes the importance of live plants within indoor spaces.

So, we decided to dig into what the buzz is all about with these pandemic plants and why so many people are greening up their space.

3News Meteorologist Matt Wintz is not only a dad to three kids, he's also a "plant dad,” and recently talked with a Horticulturist from Costa Farms

“Houseplants were always seen as well 'ya know, this is something little old ladies do' and now, it's not just mainstream but it's chic,” says Justin Hancock, a horticulturist for Costa Farms. “We saw houseplants starting to grow in popularity before the pandemic and then covid just ignited it.”

Chances are – you either have houseplants or know someone who does. People who have houseplants, arguably now more than ever, are finding small joys in caring for different types of plats, like succulents, air plants, snake plants, and others.

If you or someone you know is just starting out with houseplants, it’s important to recognize the benefits they bring to you and your interior spaces.

“There's a lot of studies that say plants are really good for our health psychologically,” says Hancock. “Studies talk about how they [houseplants] increase our productivity, can reduce stress, some even point to houseplants being able to lower our blood pressure if we just spend some time looking at them and being mindful around them.”

Of course, many people may have faux plants inside their home to green up spaces. Many people believe houseplants can be hard to keep alive and take care of.

“The most common scenario I think we see with plant failure is you don't have the right plant in the right place,” says Hancock. “If you have the right plant in the right place, that's going to do 75% of the work for you – so really matching up the amount of light you have and being honest with the right amount of watering you do. More plants die from overwatering than underwatering – it's easy to give them too much love.”

If you are just starting out or want to experiment with houseplants, Hancock suggests starting out with a Pothos plant first. 

“Pothos is great because it's so durable,” says Hancock. “It has heart-shaped leaves with crème or yellow speckling. You can grow it from a basket so it trails down, you can grow it horizontally on a mantel, you can let it grow up – it's versatile. It can grow in low light, medium light, and/or bright light. If you forget to water it for two weeks, it's just fine.”

If you're still on the fence about being an indoor houseplant person, remember this.

“That faux plant is just going to collect dust, but your real plant, that's experiential,” says Hancock. “The more you care for it, the more it's going to grow. It responds to you and in some ways it's more like a pet than it is a home décor accessory.”

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