When you think of air pollution, you think of the air outside. Luckily you can retreat to the safety of the clean air in your home, right? Actually, the air quality in your home can be worse than the air quality outside. In fact, the levels of indoor air pollutants are often 2 to 5 times higher than outdoor levels, and in some cases these levels can exceed 100 times that of outdoors. Using air purifiers can be a rather expensive way to clean air indoors. Another cheaper, healthier and natural alternative to do an even better job are plants.
Not only do they Jazz up your home but also clean the toxins from the air simultaneously. Here are the best air purifying plants that you can keep inside your house. From peace lily, dracaena, weeping fig, azalea to bamboo palm and more.
Areca Palm Plants
As with all plants, the Areca Palm is biologically engineered to take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen. However, what sets it apart is its ability to also purify the environment it’s placed in by removing dangerous chemicals such as formaldehyde, xylene and toluene. This plant does well in filtered light and needs to be watered often. For one person, four shoulder-high plants should suffice.
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Gerbera Daisy Plants
One of the prettiest plants on the list, the Gerbera Daisy is often used as a decorative element in gardening. However, it is also distinct for its ability to produce high levels of oxygen at night while removing harmful chemicals, such as benzene. Beneficial for those suffering from sleep apnea and breathing disorders, keep this one on the nightstand for better sleep. This plant prefers bright sunlight during the summer, spring and fall, and indirect light during the winter. It needs to be watered regularly with the soil being kept moist. Due to the decorative nature of it, the amount of recommended flower pots is up to the discretion of the planter.
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Peace Lily Plants
Peace lilies are an easy and undemanding plant to look after. Their glossy green leaves make the perfect addition to any room especially those spots with low light. Keep them happy with a weekly water and fertilise with a slow-release fertiliser in spring. This promotes growth and the glorious white flowers. It can remove toxins like benzene, carbon monoxide and formaldehyde.
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English Ivy Plants
This easy-growing perennial vine is particularly effective at reducing airborne faecal particles. This makes it the perfect air purifier for your bathroom. Studies have shown that the ivy can also help combat mould levels in the home. Provide this plant with generous watering and four hours of direct sunlight a day, and it will return the love to you with clean, detoxified air.
For those of you who are houseplant newbies, the resilient spider plant is the perfect choice. It will quietly battle toxins including carbon monoxide and xylene, a solvent used in the printing and rubber industries. If you have pets, this is one of the few houseplants that is non-toxic to animals. You can also repot the tiny ‘spiderettes’ and grow a whole family of plants that will pretty much take care of themselves, and you.
There are more than 40 different kinds of Dracaena plants, making it easy to find one that’s a perfect fit for your home or office. Pet owners might want to select a different plant, however, as these are toxic to cats and dogs when eaten. They can get rid of pollutants like benzene, formaldehyde and xylene. They often grow to three feet tall, so they require larger pots and more space. Any they like to be misted rather than watered.
The ficus is a tree that’s native to southeast Asia and parts of Australia. When it grows indoors, it’s a hardy plant that can eventually reach 10 feet. Grow this low-maintenance beauty in bright, indirect light, and allow the soil to dry out between waterings. It can remove pollutants like benzene and formaldehyde. When the temps are well above freezing, this houseplant can also be taken outside to spruce up your porch or patio.
Whether in burgundy or regular green, rubber trees will produce lots of oxygen. More than any other plant. In addition to producing oxygen and eliminating air toxins like formaldehyde, it effectively removes up to 60% of mold spores and bacteria from the air. Fighting off mold and bacteria is part of the plant’s defense mechanism to protect its soil.
Silver Bay Chinese Evergreen
Happy in any kind of lighting, these Chinese evergreens are known to increase productivity, concentration, and memory while also reducing stress and boosting mood. They come in a wide variety of shades including pink, red, orange, yellow, and grey. They can effectively filter toxins like benzene, formaldehyde and carbon monoxide.
A healing aloe plant is a lovely addition to your kitchen windowsill, as it loves a sunny spot. While being on hand to soothe any kitchen burns, this plant will be purifying the air of formaldehyde and benzene, found in varnishes, floor finishes, and detergents. It thrives very well in a sunny location and doesn’t require frequent watering. This makes it perfect for new plant moms and dads. Make sure you place it on a window sill or any well-lit corner, out of the way to avoid pricking.
With this plant in your bedroom, you’re in for a great night’s sleep. Also known as Mother-in-Law’s Tongue, this yellow-tipped plant releases oxygen at night, helping you to breathe better while sleeping. It is one of the best plants for filtering the air of harmful chemicals like formaldehyde, xylene, benzene and toluene. Be mindful not to overwater, as the roots are prone to rot in moist soil.
An orchid is a colourful and vibrant houseplant that will definitely add beauty to your living space. While they are not low maintenance, they surely do make spaces vibrant and inviting. They can get rid of xylene, a pollutant that comes from glue and paint. They should be placed in bright light and they thrive well when planted in small pots with well drained soil.
Azaleas in bloom in a variety of colours and are a pretty sight to behold. If planted in a group it is sure to add colour and freshness to your living spaces. This lovely dual purpose plant not only acts as an air purifier but also adorns your indoors with its attractive blooms. It has air purifying properties and grows well in bright but cool areas which do not get direct sunlight. This is because bright sunlight tends to burn the leaves. It helps to counter the ill effects of formaldehyde from plywood and foam insulation. To maintain the plant’s shape, you can trim it when the blooming period has expired.
The bamboo plant, also known as the is a great air purifying plant. It is very hardy and filters benzene and formaldehyde. It needs moist soil and placement in an area with good air circulation. As an added benefit beyond air purification, it is also a natural humidifier making it all the more useful during the dry winter. It thrives in areas with bright but not direct sunlight. The plant requires regular pruning as it grows rapidly. Since it is non-toxic it is safe for pets.
Dwarf Date Palm
If you’re longing for some tropical vibes, a great accent to make your home stylish is a palm. Although its name might imply otherwise, the Dwarf Date Palm is actually pretty big when it comes to purifying air. Also known as Pygmy Date Palm, it grows very slowly, reaching a maximum height indoors of 4-5 ft. It favors indirect light, making it a beloved companion of folks at home and offices around the world. It also doesn’t require an overly hot and humid environment as you might think. And it does perfectly well at a normal room temperature of 50-75 F. Water it moderately, keeping the soil moist, not soggy. It loves bright indirect light, but can survive in medium filtered light as well.
There’s probably no better plant that’s suitable for low and indoor light conditions than Pothos Plant, otherwise known as Devil’s Ivy. It is a notoriously hardy specimen, and will rarely bother you with plant problems. This makes it a really good plant companion for your house. However, if you really wanted to kill it as some kind of a nasty revenge, you would deprive it of water, which is the only thing that may cause stunted leaf growth and wilting. Excessive watering isn’t favored as well, but the plant loves to be heavily watered. It can even be grown in water, and other than that it’s very low-maintenance.