Cultivating and nurturing indoor plants is one of the best ways to keep a healthy mental state. For seniors, who are limited in mobility, keeping and caring for indoor plants boosts mood, engages the mind and gives seniors a sense of purpose. Whether a beginner or an old green thumb, there are plants suitable for everyone who would like to garden indoors.
Great Indoor Plant Options
These are plants that are famous for being friendly indoors, meaning super easy to grow. You can probably find one of these plants in any household. These are also typically pet-safe as well.
Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
Hail to the Queen of all indoor house plants, the Spider Plant. This stunner has earned its place at the top of the list of plants for seniors due to its low-maintenance, its beautiful, spidery shape, its ability to produce babies, and its air purification powers. Baby spiderettes are created after starting out as small white flowers.
Aloe Vera – a great succulent
Succulents are a great option for indoor plants because of their low-maintenance personalities. They don’t need a lot of water, and they grow fine in dry and warmer air temperatures. They also improve air quality, an added bonus! Another bonus to this miracle plant is their gel – great for cuts and for use as a facial mask!
Rosemary (Salvia Rosmarinus )
This beautifully fragrant herb loves a sunny window! They flower as well. With some low-maintenance (they like a well drained soil set on a drainage pan with gravel in it), you’ll have a fragrant room every day of the year. Rosemary is a great culinary herb as well that can be used fresh or dried.
Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)
The ultimate mood enhancer, Lavender is a great scented option as an indoor plant very suitable for seniors who spend a lot of time at home. When the dark winters linger, and venturing outside is difficult, Lavender enhances the home with its sweet fragrance and its beauty. One whiff of the lavender will send you to a summer field, and bring back memories of sunnier days.
Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)
The Peace, with its almost alien looking flower, is great for clearing the air and making it safer to breathe. Great option for seniors starting indoor gardening. In Christianity, the Peace Lily symbolizes the Virgin Mary and the season of Easter. Not to be confused with the Easter Lily (which has a very different flower), the Peace Lily is still part of the Lily family and is not safe around pets. While not poisonous like other lilies, the Peace Lily can cause irritation and stomach upset if ingested. Best to just keep it high off the ground on a pedestal or fenced off and away from our furry friends.
Wandering Jew (Tradescantia)
With beautiful purple coloring, the Wandering Jew plant is such an amazing plant to grow from a hanging flower pot. With sweet little purple flowers, this plant can grow like crazy if you don’t trim it occasionally. They grow profusely, so make sure you discard the trimmings properly because they are an invasive plant.
Snake Plant – or Mother-in-Law’s Tongue (Sansevieria Trifasciata)
This is another great succulent that doesn’t require a lot of maintenance in terms of water. Snake plant is also a natural air purifier, and it’s great shape makes it an interesting piece in any room!
Mint is amazing because once the plant is established in the pot, it’ll grow easily. A little sun, a little water, and you’ll get some small flowers, and a crop of fresh leaves you can just snip off and toss in your water, tea, or cook with!
While these are such lovely options to have in a senior home, there are some cautions to take note of regarding certain plants. Make sure that any succulents that you purchase aren’t infected with mealybugs because they can spread to other plants in the vicinity. Spider plants, interestingly enough, while hailed as a great air purifier, it also has an effect on allergy sufferers. So if the sniffles have tripled, best to re-home the Spider Plant. And finally, it goes without saying, live plants are infinitely better than fake plants. While some fake plants are lovely, they really serve no purpose other than collecting dust.
In cold or warm weather, indoor gardening provides inner peace for those who tend to plants. Offering a lovely mental break from the mundane for seniors, along with some cleaner air and beautiful scents, any senior would benefit from some indoor gardening.