All of us have a friend who loves his or her indoor plants. The kitchen is a jungle, the windowsills are lined with succulents in interesting little pots, and you might even find an English ivy creeping up the medicine cabinet in the bathroom.

Well, there may be method to the madness. Not all green things mean allergy attacks! While there is conflicting research on whether indoor plants actually do much air purifying (a happy, but hyperbolized, rumor—don’t tell your friend!), a philodendron, aloe, or peace lily can make more than just easy and appealing decor to any room. According to an interesting 2014 report by the University of Technology, Sydney, plants contribute positively to your environment by absorbing and buffering noise, contributing to lower stress levels, and simply promoting a welcoming atmosphere. Since plants require a certain amount of natural light and hydration, indoor spaces can benefit from a positive shift in aesthetics, too.

If your anti-allergen regimen could use a nice pairing—or if you simply want to spruce up your decor—plants are a cheerful and stress-busting way to go. (Note that plants may be toxic to pets—so be sure to put your furry friends first.) Here are five of the most popular (and hardest to kill, if you forget to water them!) indoor plants to give your home’s or office’s atmosphere a healthy, happy boost.

Spider Plant

Water required: Water thoroughly, then let dry out completely before next watering.
Sunlight: Bright light.
Temperature: Room temperature.
Pets: Non-toxic to pets.


Water required: Soil should stay moderately dry.
Sunlight: Medium light for a few hours a day - great for kitchen or office.
Temperature: Room temperature, a little cooler in the winter.
Pets: Toxic to pets.



Water required: Water when top inch of soil is dry. Drain well.
Sunlight: Bright, indirect to low light. Very resilient and enjoys a wide range of environments.
Temperature: Room temperature
Pets: Toxic to pets. The sap my cause irritation in some people.


English Ivy

Water required: Let the soil become somewhat dry between waterings.
Sunlight: Bright to medium light.
Temperature: Room temperature.
Pets: Toxic to pets.



Water required: Once each week or two, less in the winter. Make sure the soil drains well.
Sunlight: Indirect, but consistent, light.
Temperature: Room temperature or warm. Keep away from cold windows and frost!
Pets: Toxic to pets.

This certainly isn’t an exhaustive list of indoor plants, and each type of plant may require certain care not listed here. Take a trip to your local nursery, explore which plants are right for your space, and enjoy the environment boost that comes with fresh greenery and a healthy, clean home!