Indoor Uses for Plants

Even if you do not have a yard, you can still enjoy plants by growing them indoors. During the latter part of the 1900s, artificial plants became popular, allowing homes and businesses to decorate with fake plants, without worrying about watering, feeding and caring for the live plants. Yet for many people, artificial plants simply do not provide the same function as live indoor plants.

Air Purification

Poor air quality is a concern, especially in office buildings with closed windows and poor ventilation or homes closed up for long periods during severe weather conditions of heat or cold. Toxins build up, which threaten the health of occupants. Some people use electric air filters, yet nature provides a better option by using houseplants to filter pollutants from the air. According to studies by NASA, 15 to 20 houseplants will efficiently purify the indoor air of a 1,800-square-foot building.

Indoor Garden

While you may not have enough room outside to grow a vegetable garden, it is possible to grow an indoor herb garden, to add fresh ingredients to your recipes year round. Placed in a sunny window, an indoor herb garden adds fragrance as well as a fresh crop of herbs for the kitchen. Other edible plants can also be successfully grown indoors, providing the temperature and lighting conditions are adequate.


Indoor plants provide decorative accents to a room, bringing color as well as life to the environment. Flowering plants brighten window seats, while taller plants or small trees provide screening for rooms. In the bathroom or other humid areas, live greenery in an indoor planter gives the area a tropical feel. Healthy indoor plants provide a relaxing environment.


Indoor cats are drawn to certain plants, such as catnip and some grasses. Providing cat-friendly plants will contribute to your feline’s happiness and well-being. But be warned, many indoor plants are lethal to pets. Avoid poisonous plants if you have an indoor pet who might be tempted to snack on the plant. Some plants, which are safe for humans, present a health hazard for pets. One example is the grape; it is safe for humans yet can cause kidney failure in dogs.

Indoor Garden

For those who have limited access to the outdoors, indoor plants are a way to create an outdoor environment. Some people do this with a greenhouse or by transforming a sunroom into a lush garden.

Keywords: house plant uses, plants purifying air, decorating house plants

About this Author

Ann Johnson has been a freelance writer since 1995. She previously served as the editor of a community magazine in Southern California and was also an active real estate agent, specializing in commercial and residential properties. She has a Bachelor of Arts in communications from California State University of Fullerton.