It sounds strange to take bedroom design advice from NASA, but research from the space agency can improve your ability to nod off faster and sleep more deeply – and it’s all about plants. NASA’s Clean Air Study delved into how to provide astronauts cleaner air and better sleep, and their findings can benefit you. Let’s look at how designing with plants can help you sleep better and which plants to try.
Plants are natural filters for impurities
Plant roots function as filters and can destroy orders, pathogenic viruses, bacteria, and other elements of air pollutants. If you’re a city dweller, windows and doors let in air pollution and toxins. Nearby neighbors that smoke waft impure air your way. Plants throughout your home clean up the air but, in the bedroom, can be particularly beneficial because you spend eight (or so) hours a night there breathing deeply.
Plants block sound
You might not notice noise pollution during the day, but when you lie down to sleep, you need quiet. Traffic and street noise, neighbors, and other clatter can keep you awake at night. Placing plants in your windows acts as a natural sound barrier. Plant leaves, roots, and soil absorb sound and minimize sound waves into your bedroom. For enhanced effect, go with a window box outside and sill plants inside.
Plants encourage sleep
Plants convert CO2 you breathe out into healing O2 you need. They’re also visually appealing, and studies show natural elements like live plants reduce stress. All these are elements of good sleep. Some plants also give off aromas that are naturally sleep-inducing.
Here are some of the top plants to consider in your bedroom design and how they help.
Jasmine – This exotic houseplant can help reduce anxiety for more peaceful sleep.
Lavender – The scent is pleasant, and it slows the heart rate and lowers blood pressure.
Aloe Vera – It’s top-rated by NASA for air purification and emits oxygen all night long.
Gardenia – This high-maintenance plant might be worth the effort as it can combat insomnia.
Spider Plant – These attractive plants can reduce 90% of formaldehyde in the air.
Valerian – Since Roman times, this perennial was known to fight poor sleep and insomnia.
English Ivy – This easy-to-keep plant helps allergy and asthma and strips mold from the air.
Bamboo (Reed) Palm – This palm strips out odors so that you can ditch chemical air fresheners.
Bedroom design with plants
Good sleep starts in the daytime with a balanced, low-stress life. From there, the foundation for a good night’s sleep is a quality mattress that meets your needs. Use bedside tables or a shelf above your bed as a space for sleep-encouraging plants. Ones to place on your bedside include Valerian, Gardenia, and Aloe Vera.
If noise is an issue, the three best plants to block noise are:
Peace Lily – The wide glossy leaves absorb sound effectively, but it doesn’t like direct sun.
Rubber Plant – Another wide-leaved sound absorber – they also prefer indirect light.
Weeping Fig – This Amazonian import with thick leaves absorbs pollutants and sound.
Not all plants are beneficial to sleep, so when you’re ready to design a sleep-enhancing greener bedroom, be sure to do your homework on which plants offer the benefits you want and are a fit for the light and space you have available.