Living on your own in UCM housing is a great way to learn how to be an adult. Taking care of yourself through proper diet, exercise, and study habits without a concerned parent hanging over your shoulder isn’t always easy to do, however. Temptations abound when you are surrounded by other young and energetic students who are also learning lessons in taking care of themselves. But even if you would rather attend a party than buckle down and study for that big test coming up next week, the efforts you make to keep your living quarters relaxing and functional will never be wasted. And even if you can’t bring along a beloved pet with you to campus housing, you can populate your dorm or apartment with live plants.
Easy Care, Refreshing Air
So you don’t have gardening skills. So what? House plants are fairly simple to care for, and in return for a little water and sunshine, they give you so much. Indoor plants benefit residents in a number of ways. For instance, you probably already know that green plants release oxygen (which you breathe) while soaking up carbon dioxide (which is a waste gas that you exhale). While most plants “sleep” at night by changing their respiration to soaking up oxygen and releasing carbon dioxide, some, like succulents, orchids, and epiphytic bromeliads continue to release oxygen during the quiet (or not so quiet) hours of darkness. Succulents, such as cacti, are probably the simplest form of indoor plant to care for, and setting two or three of these in your bedroom will keep the air fresh while you sleep. And as a side bonus, the plants aren’t just producing oxygen; they are also purifying the air by removing toxins and exhaling soothing water vapor. Studies have shown that hospital patients respond better to treatments and heal faster on average when recovering in a room with live plants. For reasons yet to be explained, live plants in libraries, study rooms, and classrooms also help sharpen focus and attention.
The Best Types of Easy-Care Indoor Plants
Spider plants are one of the best types of indoor plants if you don’t consider yourself a green thumb. Their long, thin leaves grow rapidly if given indirect sunlight and a little water when the soil feels dry. Hang spider plants in baskets or set them in large pots on a coffee table, kitchen counter, or nightstand in your bedroom. They are great air purifiers. For a little relief when dry winter air causes your lips to crack and your lungs to cough, install a few Boston ferns to pump up humidity levels (just be sure to mist your fern daily to keep it from drying out and quickly dying). Succulents and cacti come in all sizes, and a little neglect isn’t likely to kill them while they pump out oxygen in your bedroom. Some quick research and a visit to a department store or home store will yield plenty of options and ideas for indoor plants you could learn to enjoy. If you can’t take your pet with you to UCM housing, you might as well take care of a plant. You’ll learn some responsibility and enjoy the welcoming benefits.
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