5 Cheap Ways to Brighten up a Room

Add a Plant

Houseplants bring nature indoors with color and texture, and they can be surprisingly easy to maintain. Don't tune out yet! We're serious. Pots that include their own water reservoirs and space-age water retaining soil additives make caring for plants less hands-on than it used to be. Keeping them is more like having an independent cat than caring for a newborn. You can find a plant variety for almost any sun exposure, too.

Even if you've killed what feels like a forest in the past, there's an excellent, unexpected reason to give plant-keeping another try. Many houseplants are natural air purifiers working quietly to clean the stale, chemical-laden air your super-efficient weather stripping and other insulation has trapped indoors. Some to try include:

  • A tall column of snake plant (Sansevieria trifasciata) will grow under most light conditions, screen an area you want to conceal and add height to a low ceiling.
  • Pothos (Epipiremnum aureum) is an almost indestructible vine that's available in a number of mottled and solid color variations. It can trail along a windowsill or meander around and through a tiny trellis.
  • Chinese evergreen (Aglaonema modestum), English ivy (Hedera helix) and spider plant (Chlorophytum comosum) are all super hardy (read: hard to kill) and attractive decorations to boot.

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