Air purifying plants are becoming more popular all the time. In general, not only do indoor plants give color and life to our homes, but they can also tie together the theme of your home. The presence of indoor plants can also have a calming, relaxing effect on people.
Now, there is the idea of indoor plants being able to clean the air inside your home. Much of these claims come from an article published by NASA in the ‘80s. In the meantime, research has shown we need to take the NASA article with a grain of salt. The truth is, you’d need hundreds of plants inside an average-sized home for the plants to have a significant air-purifying effect. However, air purifying plants can still improve the air quality inside your home without you needing to create an actual forest.
Why does the Quality of Air Inside Your Home Matter?
Consider how much time you’re spending inside your home. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, most people spend 90% of their time indoors. And if you are indoors, you are exposing yourself to indoor pollution.
There are many sources of indoor pollution, such as aerosolized cleaning products, scented hygiene, and body products, and products such as perfume or cologne. There are also microorganisms such as bacteria or mold in your home that can become airborne.
Even your furniture might be emitting gases that can act as indoor pollutants! The risk is particularly high if you have any furniture made from particleboard. Also, if you have freshly painted walls, your indoor air might contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs). In fact, studies have shown that the levels of VOCs indoors are 2-5 times greater than levels outdoors. High levels of indoor pollution in your home could cause health issues. You might experience symptoms such as headaches, fatigue, and nausea. Indoor pollution is especially dangerous for people with respiratory problems, such as those who have asthma.
Bottom line: Indoor plants can help make the indoor air you breathe cleaner and healthier.
8 Air Purifying Plants that can Help Clean the Air Inside Your Home
1. Devil’s Ivy
Also known as pothos, this plant species is one of the most popular choices as an indoor plant. They are easy to care for and have leaves with bold, striking colors. While it can be grown in pots, this species will thrive when grown in hanging baskets since it is a vine. In fact, you might need to trim down your Devil’s Ivy in the future because it just might grow all over your home if given a chance!
2. Peace Lilies
The Peace Lily is also known as a spathiphyllum, and it is another popular plant because they are undemanding and will grow in most conditions. They have glossy green leaves on long stems that will make them the center of attention for any room in which you place them. While they can endure drought and neglect, Peace lilies will thrive if you water them once a week. And they grow beautiful white flowers!
3. Spider Plants as Air Purifying Plants
If you’ve got a lousy track record when it comes to keeping plants alive, the Spider Plant is the best choice for you. Spider plants can survive in virtually any condition in your home and do not need much in terms of water or sunlight. Even if you forget to water or place your Spider plant in sunlight for a week or two, they’ll still be as healthy and happy as can be. Here’s an adorable piece of trivia: baby Spider plants are called spiderettes!
4. Rubber Plants
Originally from India, rubber plants are now one of the most common plants you can find indoors, especially in living rooms and other large spaces. Rubber plants have gorgeous leaves, and they love bright sunlight. You only need to water rubber plants every week or so during the summer and every two weeks in the winter. Rubber plants will grow as large as you allow them. If you want to restrict their growth, simply use a small pot.
5. Snake Plants
The snake plant is another striking and trendy plant. There are several reasons why people love the snake plant. First, they are easy to care for and highly resistant to drought and temperature changes. Second, they can be kept small and compact or allowed to grow tall. Finally, snake plants are also known as “Mother-in-law’s Tongue plants” because their shape supposedly resembles the sharp tongue of a mother-in-law.
6. Aloe Vera
Aside from being air purifying plants, aloe vera plants have another health benefit! You can use the sap inside an aloe vera leaf to moisturize your skin. Additionally, aloe is known to give relief from rashes and scaly skin. You can even use the sap to soothe mild burns. Aloe vera plants love sunny locations and regular watering.
There is a Draceana plant for everyone! In fact, there are over 40 different species of Draceana plants that come in a wide range of colors. These plants grow tall (around three feet), so make sure you provide a large pot and wide space for the plant. These plants like indirect sunlight and misting rather than watering.
8. Boston Ferns as Air Purifying Plants
Boston ferns are popular air purifying plants because of the unique shape of the leaves. While they are easy to grow and will propagate quickly, make sure the soil underneath the plant always stays moist. It’s a good idea to mist the soil daily and give it a good soak once a month. Boston ferns love indirect sunlight and high humidity.
Air Purifying Plants for the Indoors – The Wrap-up
So, indoor plants might not exactly be the powerful air cleaning machines that popular belief is making them out to be, but they still improve the air quality in your home while making it look beautiful. What’s more, a collection of indoor plants will also have a positive effect on your mental well-being. That’s a win-win situation all around!