Yesterday marked the start of National Houseplants Appreciation Week, a week dedicated to the appreciation of houseplants and the awareness of the benefits they have.

National Houseplant Appreciation Week was established by The Gardener’s Network - a gardening blog - turning it into an official opportunity to remind people of the benefits of houseplants.

Houghton Hall Garden Centre in Carlisle has been spreading awareness of the week and said that as people are still spending more time working or learning from home, it is the perfect time to add more houseplants to the home.

They added that indoor plants can not only improve the air we breathe but have a positive effect on our mental health, relieve stress, and create an overall calming effect and increase productivity.

Speaking about the week, Alan McManus, the plant manager at Houghton Hall Garden Centre in Carlisle, said: "Houseplants have become a lot more popular in recent months, this is something experienced across Europe.

"It is just a general sort of surge in plants being sold."

Alan added that popular houseplants include: the spider plant, also known as spider ivy and ribbon plant; the peace lily, also known as spath, and; the wildly named mother in law's tongue, known also as St George's sword and viper's bowstring hemp.

Alan said on the reason behind the surge in popularity in houseplant sales: "I would say that it is most likely because of fashion."

He explained that they are just as much of an ornament as they are almost a fashion accessory for the house.

He added: "It is now trendy again to have plants in our house.

"They are great to have in the house to clean the air, as they naturally make in carbon dioxide and give out oxygen, and they of course have benefits for the mind.

"If you feel a bit down, then seeing something green in the house can make you feel a lot better."