Indoor Plants: Natural Coolants

12 months ago / by Rashmi Gopal Rao
Image credits: Shutterstock

Come summer and it is time for holidays, lazing around the house and having fun with friends and family.  But summer also means longer and hotter days coupled with soaring temperatures even inside the house.  While turning on the fan and the air conditioner is the obvious option, did you know that an easier and eco friendlier way of keeping your house cool is to adorn it with indoor plants? 

Well, it is indeed true for plants to act like natural air conditioners and help keep temperatures down by releasing moisture through transpiration.  In addition, they help flush out toxins and improve indoor air quality.  Hence it is often said that plants provide oxygen for the lung as well as the soul.  The best part is plants also help enhance the look and feel of the space while elevating aesthetics too.

Here is a look at five plants that help keep your indoors cool:

Areca Palm: these tall and delicate looking plants are one of the most common and popular indoor plants.  They not only add a pleasant look to the space but also help cool the indoor air around by removing xylene and toluene from the surrounding atmosphere.  While they grow well indoors, it is important to expose these plants to partial sunlight so that they remain healthy.  It is a good idea to have a couple of potted palms so that you can rotate them between the indoors and outdoors.  These natural humidifiers are a great idea to introduce some positive and vibrant vibes into your home as well.  Fern palms as well as fish tail palms are other species of palms that are highly effective in cooling the indoor air.

Aloe Vera: the benefits of aloe vera for the skin and its healing properties for minor cuts and burns is well known.  Apart from this, it is key to note that aloe vera has very high-water content.  This makes it a top choice as an indoor plant for cooling down the home.  The thick leaves replete with water release moisture during transpiration thereby releasing cool air into the atmosphere.  It is also known to absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen during the night which helps you sleep better and thereby improves air quality.  Note that aloe vera flourishes in sunlight and hence it is a great idea to keep it against your work window or even in a west facing corner.

Snake plant: also called Mother-in-law’s tongue or Sansevieria trifasciata, this one is similar to the Aloe vera plant in that the leaves are full of moisture.  A tall plant that flourishes indoors, this one is highly effective in improving indoor air quality as it absorbs benzene and formaldehyde.  It cools the surrounding space by humidifying the air.  Given that they grow really tall you can keep them as natural barriers in between spaces or even by the window.

Ficus: also known as weeping fig, this one is again a favourite with indoor plant lovers.  Alternatively called Ficus benjamina, its clump of leaves on top help keep the surrounding air moist and cool.  A bushy plant that grows quite tall, Ficus adds a charm quite like none other to any space.  It also helps absorb metal particles in the air keeping the air pure and clean.  Make sure you water these plants well and keep them in moderate or medium sunlight.

Boston Fern: an aesthetically pleasing plant, the Boston fern is a thick, bushy plant that grows well indoors. Again, a highly effective plant that cools the air by keeping it moist, it also helps clean formaldehyde and other volatile organic pollutants from the air.  It is key to note that this plant needs to be watered regularly and not exposed to direct sunlight.  Keep it on your bedroom window or by your work desk and enjoy pure, clean air every day!

Apart from these spider plant, golden pothos, money plant, peace lily and bamboo plants are extremely effective in cooling and purifying indoor air.  You can easily shop for these plants online at Amazon, The Sill and other sites.