Breath of Fresh Air: Houseplants for Improving Air Quality
There’s no doubt that houseplants enhance any room in the home or office. But did you know they also directly benefit you? That’s right! Many types of houseplants can improve the air quality in your home by pulling toxins out of the air. Here’s a guide to the best houseplants to put into your home for a breath of fresh air:
1. Spider Plant: This resilient houseplant is sturdy and reliable, even if you have a penchant for neglecting houseplants. But as resilient as they are, spider plants still grow best in bright, indirect sunlight. Spider plants pull toxins such as carbon monoxide and formaldehyde out of the air. Bonus: this plant is considered safe if you have pets who stick their noses where they don’t belong!
2. Pothos: This easy-growing plant is another combatant to formaldehyde and would work well in a garage since car exhaust is riddled with it. Pothos require bright, indirect light and moderate watering, but don’t overwater – it’ll cause root rot. However, pothos are considered poisonous and should be kept away from pets and children.
3. Aloe (Vera): Aloe Vera is best known as a topical gel for sunburns. This sun-loving succulent cleans the air from benzene and formaldehyde, and the leaves of the aloe plant can be snipped off to access the gel inside to heal burns and cuts. No need for store-bought Aloe Vera! Place Aloe in a sunny window and water at least once a week.
4. Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema): This beautiful foliage plant comes in a variety of color combinations and can help clean the air of a variety of pollutants. Chinese evergreens are easy to care for and can live in conditions where other plants won’t. Because they are tropical plants, they like a little humidity. Mist the leaves and leave a saucer of stones and water beneath the plant to keep it from drying out too much.
5. Warneckii Dracaena: This striking foliage plant grows easily indoors, even without direct light, and combats pollutants associated with varnishes and
oils. With a potential height of 12 feet, the Warneckii is surely a conversation topic.
6. English Ivy: English Ivy is a common houseplant that grows quickly and easily. As an air purifier, a study found that ivy reduces airborne fecal-matter particles and filters out formaldehyde in household cleaners. Ivy grows best with four or more hours of direct sunlight with evenly moist soil.
7. Snake Plant (Sansevieria): Known as mother-in-law’s tongue, sansevieria is an attractive upright plant that filters out formaldehyde, which is found in household cleaners, toilet paper, tissues, and personal care products. The bathroom is an excellent place for the snake plant as it thrives with low light and loves the humidity.
8. Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum): One of the lowest-maintenance houseplants, peace lilies are a common sympathy gift. They love low light and require weekly watering; that’s all it takes to make these beautiful foliage plants bloom. The peace lily is a great soldier against formaldehyde and benzene.