When you think of air pollution, smoke, smog, factory emissions and all sorts of vehicles leaving trails of black smoke are probably the first few things that you picture. Well, that’s precisely because you think of the air pollution in the environment, not indoor air pollution (Yup, that’s a thing!) You’d be surprised to know about the degrading quality of the air that you breathe at home and the various factors that are responsible for it.
Indoor air-purifying plants are the key to a clean and green home. They are a much safer option to cleanse the air at home, as opposed to air purifiers. It would be an understatement to call indoor plants ‘low-maintenance’ because truly, they can survive with bare minimum supplies. Occasional sunlight, very little water and the right kind of soil are all it takes to keep these plants happy. Plus, they have so much to offer in return; and let’s admit it: a healthy, green plant in a fancy pot is ideal for home decor!
8 Indoor Air-purifying Houseplants to Clean the Air at Home
Why invest in indoor plants that are just pretty to look at when there’s a whole list of houseplants that not only purify the air at home, but also keep it clean and pollutant-free? Here are few indoor plants that serve the purpose
1. Bamboo Palms
Bamboo Palms top the list of indoor air-purifying plants because they get rid of major indoor air pollutants like acetone, xylene, and toluene. These pollutants arise out of household objects such as paints, nail polish, petroleum and diesel products, detergents, cleansers, and wooden furniture. These pollutants can have harmful effects on pregnant women and children. Bamboo Palms absorb harmful gases and replace them with fresh oxygen instead. They grow well when they have access to bright, indirect sunlight. Plus, they release a healthy dose of moisture into the air- something that is always welcome during the chilly months.
2. Boston Fern
Also known as the Sword Fern, Boston Fern is said to be one of the oldest plants on earth. This plant thrives well under part light, part shade, and in moist conditions. These ferns help get rid of formaldehyde, an indoor air pollutant. A study published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information claims that the most significant sources of formaldehyde are combustion processes like cooking, heating, incense or candle burning, smoking, etc. Not only do these ferns absorb harmful pollutants like formaldehyde, but they also provide a certain level of humidity to the room, making the air pure and fresh.
3. English Ivy
English Ivy is one of the few plants on NASA’s list of air purifying indoor plants. This plant is easy to grow and can survive indoors as well as outdoors. This elegant houseplant works wonders in absorbing carbon dioxide from the air and removing other harmful chemicals. It’s like a natural air purifier, which is why most people prefer to plant it in hanging pots next to the windows. Apart from ornamentation, English Ivy has numerous medicinal properties. This plant is widely used to cure respiratory conditions. If you have pets at home, make sure you keep them from chewing on the leaves of this plant, because they’re poisonous.
4. Snake Plant
This plant is named after its long, snake-like leaves. It can grow in the darkest corners of your house, and you need only water it once a month – this makes it the ideal plant for those who haven’t developed a green thumb. This plant removes pollutants like benzene, formaldehyde, and xylene from the air at home, making it pure and oxygen-rich. Also, its leaves grow upwards instead of sideways, saving a lot of space. It serves as the ideal plant for home decor when planted in an elegant ceramic pot.
5. Rubber Plant
This is another plant on NASA’s clean air study. The large leaves of the Rubber Plant absorb the carbon dioxide from the air and convert it into oxygen. Rubber plants also get rid of bacteria and mold spores that float in the air, making this an ideal houseplant. While naturally purifying the air, this plant does not pose any harm to humans and pets. These plants can grow up to 8 feet tall and can handle under-watering way better than over-watering. Rubber plants remove pollutants like formaldehyde from the air at home.
6. Chinese Evergreen
True to its name, this plant remains green and healthy all around the year. Chinese Evergreens can survive in full shade, provided that their soil is well-drained. They emit high levels of oxygen, making the air around clean and pollutant-free. This plant also gets rid of chemicals and bacteria in the air, making it oxygen-rich. You can opt for this indoor plant for purifying the air; ensure that you keep it away from animals/pets because the sap of this plant can be poisonous.
7. Peace Lily
Known for their ability to fight harmful gases like carbon monoxide and formaldehyde, Peace Lilies are elegant indoor plants, and one of the favourites of the indoor plant enthusiasts. They cleanse the air by breaking down and neutralising complex chemicals and gases in the air. Due to the texture of its leaves, this plant can be easily mistaken for an artificial plant. Peace Lilies love low levels of light, and they display apparent signs when they are over/under watered. You need not worry about the growth of this plant. With proper care and the right kind of soil, it might even grow white leaf-shaped flowers for you.
8. Spider Plant
This plant gets its name from the spider-like shoots that spring out of it. This easy to maintain houseplant grows well in light that is bright, but not direct. Spider plants are hard-working plants that get rid of harmful pollutants in the air. Spider plants are very effective in the absorption of ozone from the indoor air, thus improving the quality of the air we breathe. These plants should be preferably kept next to windows so that the air that enters your home gets filtered right at the beginning — one thing to remember about this plant that it needs plenty of water to grow and to carry on its processes of purifying the air.
So there you have it — a list of plants that not only purify the air but also give your home a fresh look. Air-purifying indoor plants are the least expensive way to keep your home clean and green. They work wonders in boosting a fresh dose of oxygen in your home, and most of the above mentioned require very little sunlight, water and care. So why invest in air filters when these pretty plants will do the job for you?