By Brooke Greene / Editor in Chief

With Covid-19 outbreaks, busy lives, living far from home, and downright loneliness, it isn’t uncommon for college students to become depressed.

While some go get an iced coffee, do their nails, buy a video game, impulsively buy a puppy, or eat so many hot Cheetos that they look like Donald Trump after his spray tans, an excellent option for making yourself feel better is buying a houseplant.

Yes, a houseplant.

There is a wide variety of them that are easy to take care of, they clean the air in your home, liven up the environment, and statistically make people happier.

A pothos is my strongest recommendation for those interested in trying this method. They start small but grow incredible vines, which means you can ditch that fake ivy and use pothos vines to accomplish that boho greenhouse vibe you were going for with your dorm room or apartment. These plants are so hard to kill, even the worst plant parents could handle this one. Water it once a week with your leftover water bottles from your car … come on, we all know there’s got to be at least 10 lying around. It needs moderate, yet indirect, sunlight, and a little fertilizer in the soil and you are good to go.

According to NBC News, studies have proven that houseplants improve concentration and productivity (by up to 15%), reduce stress levels, and boost your mood. This means it could also help you focus when it comes to homework. However, I have 32 houseplants and still put off my homework until the last minute, but that’s not the point.

I used to believe I did not have the slightest bit of a green thumb, and after hearing about plant house and depression-related studies, I went and bought my first houseplant, an orchid. The best part is when the flower blooms and you feel like you have done something right. After that, I bought another plant, and another, until eventually I got a summer job at Stutzmans Greenhouse, and ended up with over 20 houseplants.

Not to mention, fellow houseplant lovers give you clippings of theirs and you can mix and match new plants.

If the year has you down, stressed, or lonely, try buying a houseplant and see what it can do for you. Doctors are suggesting houseplants for those with anxiety and depression as opposed to rushing to medication in every case. If one plant makes you happy, imagine how you’ll feel after 32 of them consume your home. Now, go to your nearest hardware store or greenhouse and buy your first green friend.

Brooke Greene is a HutchCC journalism graduate now studying police science. She is the Collegian editor in chief.

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