Indoor air pollution is a big concern, with everything from cleaning products to carpeting to household furniture sometimes at fault.
The good news is that house plants are an economical yet efficient way to remove toxins and irritating particulates from indoor air – plus they make a gorgeous addition to any room.
Add These House Plants and Enjoy Cleaner Indoor Air
1. Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
This fast-growing plant is easy to care for and requires minimal maintenance, except for clipping its offspring (that grow from shoots) for repotting.
It does best in natural but indirect light and shouldn't sit right in front of a sunny window. Spider plants help clean the air of formaldehyde, xylene, carbon monoxide and benzene.
2. Aloe Vera
A true sun-lover, aloe vera is a succulent primarily known for the gel within its leaves. This clear, slightly thick gel contains enzymes, vitamins and amino acids, making it ideal for healing wounds and burns.
This naturally medicinal plant loves a sunny place next to a window, where it will work hard to remove formaldehyde and benzene from the air.
3. Bamboo Palm (Chamaedorea seifrizii)
Growing anywhere from 4 to 12 feet tall, the bamboo palm is a stately plant that can be a focal piece all by itself.
It thrives in anything from full to part sun, so it is suitable for many areas of the home. The bamboo palm helps remove formaldehyde from indoor environments, as well as benzene and trichloroethylene.
4. Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)
Fond of slightly shaded areas, the peace lily is a low-maintenance plant that excels at removing mold spores from the air. This plant also adds moisture to indoor air lacking proper humidity.
Peace lilies are good at removing benzene, ammonia, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene. It doesn't like chlorinated water, however, and can be a skin irritant due to oxalates in the sap.
5. Rubber Plant (Ficus elastica)
Resilient and long lasting, the rubber plant hardly blinks when placed in low temperatures and low-light conditions.
Its sap is mildly toxic to pets and people and should always be placed out of reach of little hands and paws. The rubber plant removes many volatile organic compounds (VOCs), especially formaldehyde.
6. English Ivy (Hedera helix)
This vigorous plant loves direct sunlight and well-watered soil, but it can handle indirect light as well. In addition, it should receive an occasional misting to keep leaves from drying out.
English ivy is a powerhouse at removing formaldehyde, and it does well removing xylene, toluene, benzene (especially from cigarette smoke) and mold spores as well.
Pelargoniums are brightly colored scented geraniums that do best in sunny, draft-free areas of the home.
Their fragrant leaves (ranging from rose to ginger scents) excel at neutralizing odors and adding oxygen. They also help remove indoor air toxins, and they deter moths and other insects.
8. Azalea (Rhododendron simsii)
A gorgeous shrubby plant with bold pink flowers, the azalea loves partial sun throughout the day or else sun in the mornings and shade in the afternoons.
These plants need well-watered soil and an occasional misting, along with temperatures that average 60 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit. Azaleas helps keep indoor air clean by removing formaldehyde.
9. Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema modestum)
The Chinese evergreen thrives in low-light, less-than-ideal conditions, making it suitable for most rooms of the home. One important note is that it can be toxic to pets and should be placed out of reach.
This plant has an intriguing property of becoming more effective at removing toxins and pollutants the longer it is exposed to them.
10. Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata)
A hardy species, the snake plant does well in many sunlight and temperature conditions, but it prefers bright light and slightly drier soil.
It is a powerful air cleaner, removing toxins like xylene, formaldehyde, benzene, trichloroethylene and nitrogen oxide.
An interesting feature of this plant is its ability to work at night, since plants are typically only active during the day. While people are sleeping, the snake plant helps to remove excess carbon dioxide and replace it with oxygen.
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