In the warmer months, it can be tempting to blast the air conditioner in an effort to stay cool. But there is a much cheaper, more environmentally friendly way to keep the temperature down in your house: plants.
You probably have a pot or two around your house for aesthetic purposes. However, you may want to consider adding certain plants that can not only keep the air cool, but also help flush out toxins.
Plants can keep your house cool because they lose water during transpiration, which cools the air around the plants, leaving it purified and fresh.
Dr. Leonard Perry, a professor at the University of Vermont adds that “a USDA estimate is that proper use of plants could decrease air temperature in an office by as much as 10 degrees. Plus, the moisture released by these plants helps maintain indoor humidity in the human comfort zone of 30 to 60 percent, and helps prevent materials such as wood from cracking when dried out.”
If you’re looking for a natural, inexpensive way to keep your house cool, consider getting some of these plants, which can help keep temperatures down.
1. Aloe Vera
Having an aloe vera plant on hand will not only come in handy if you get any nasty sunburns, but it is also effective at cooling the air temperature and removing formaldehyde from the air.
2. Areca Palm Tree
One of the most popular living room plants is the areca palm tree, a decorative house plant that acts as a natural humidifier. In addition to cooling off your home, the areca palm can remove benzene, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene from the air. This areca palm tree sells for about $33 at Home Depot.
3. Ficus Tree
The ficus tree, also known as a weeping fig, helps to keep the air temperature cool as well as reduce air pollution and improve air quality.
This plant helps to not only cool and humidify the air, but like aloe vera, it is good for cleaning formaldehyde out of the air. In fact, scientists at NASA say the fern is one of the most effective air-purifying plants.
5. Snake Plant
The snake plant, also known as mother-in-law’s tongue, is another plant recommended by NASA to help purify the air. The plant gives off oxygen at night, keeping you cool as well as absorbing a large number of toxins in your home.
6. Golden Pothos
The golden pothos is a great plant for those who aren’t exactly garden-savvy, as it’s extremely easy to take care of. It requires little light and little care, and it will keep your air cool and purified. You can get a 6-inch potted golden pothos at Home Depot for about $17.
Did You Know?
Did you know that this breezeway between the two halves of a house is called a dogtrot and was used as a technique for keeping homes cool back in the day? This design was popular on 1800s Southern plantations. Both sides could get fresh air, and the porch overhang shielded the front windows from the sun and rain.
Here are four more ways homes were designed to stay cool before air conditioning.