5 reasons to fill your home and garden with local plants

Originally published and written by We ♥ Local BC

Looking for a way to improve your health and well-being, with the bonus of boosting your property value and caring for the environment? Fill your home and garden with local plants this season — you might be surprised at all the ways you and your family can benefit from local plants and trees! We connected with our friends at Plant Something BC to come up with these 5 great reasons to fill your home and garden with local plants.

1. Reduce energy use:

It might not be the first thing that comes to mind, but strategically placed large plants and trees can increase your home energy efficiency. By providing shade in the summer and shelter in the winter, a tree can help your home stay the right temperature with less energy usage. Local trees offer additional benefits: they sequester carbon, manage storm water, create a habitat for animals, and help clean the air — with tangible results for you and your family! To get a sense of how even just one tree can do all these things for you, check out the Tree Benefits Calculator and get started by entering your postal code.

2. Reduce stress (and improve well-being):

Plants provide all kinds of benefits to humans. For example, studies on plants in work environments have shown that seeing, touching or smelling plants can actively reduce both physical and mental stress. What’s more, spending time in nature can actually refresh our attention span and ability to concentrate. It’s even been shown that plants in a classroom improve children’s ability to learn. And that is just the beginning – this study identified 21 possible pathways for how spending time in nature can be beneficial to your health. For more about the science of plants and well-being, visit Plant Something BC.

“Studies on plants in work environments have shown that seeing, touching or smelling plants can actively reduce both physical and mental stress.”

3. Improve air quality:

Indoor air pollution can be caused by factors like mold, formaldehyde, benzene and carbon monoxide — but house plants are able to purify your air and filter out these toxins by absorbing them through their leaves and roots. In this way, indoor plants can help to reduce symptoms like headaches, coughing, and skin irritations — and by humidifying the air, plants can also help with symptoms like itchy eyes and congestion!

4. Increase the value of your home:

Did you know that upgrading your landscaping can increase the value of your home by about 10%! Whether it is low maintenance perennials, drought resistant native plants, or gorgeous trees and shrubs, we all know how much we admire a beautifully landscaped yard! Plant Something BC has a great search tool to find a local landscaper in your area.

5. Good for pollinators:

Local plants in gardens and on balconies work wonders for pollinators! We’ve talked before about why pollinators like birds, bees and butterflies are so important to our farms and local ecosystems. When you grow plants like sunflowers, geraniums, California poppies, fireweed, clarkia, solidago, lupines and penstemon, you’re helping to support local pollinators with some of their favourite sources of food. To find some great plant picks for birds, bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds, visit Plant Something Bee Friendly.

Ready to get planting? To search for a garden center near you, check out this great tool. And if you’ve discovered a true love for plants, why not turn that passion into your career? Check out growyourfuture.ca to find out more about starting a career in horticulture. Don’t forget to join us on Facebook and Instagram to get to know BC farmers, share recipes, and support local!