7 Houseplants That Improve Indoor Air Quality
- English Ivy – Hedera helix is a plant you have likely seen a lot in your life due to its popularity and easy care maintenance, not to mention the staggering rate of growth. These plants climb and grow fast! Some people might consider them nothing more than an invasive plant or weed – largely because you most often see this plant climbing the walls or up the trellis on abandoned homes and buildings. The fact that it cleans out formaldehyde, xylene, and toluene, trichloroethylene, and benzene is reason enough to bring these lovely, large leafed plants inside.
- Bamboo – Bamboo palms are part of the Chamaedorea family that have 107 different species. These plants are fantastic for your home and work area, take up little space, and can live through drier than usual conditions (like when you forget to water). These plants remove formaldehyde, xylene, and toluene from the air.
- Aloe Vera – A well documented beneficial plant to have around, Aloe Vera (Aloe barbadensis) removes formaldehyde and benzene from the air. It requires little water and prefers a lot of sunshine but can do well in artificial light, too. Of course, aloe also has the added benefit of being excellent treatment for burns, scrapes, and abrasions.
- BONUS: Ficus Tree – Prefer to have a nice little tree? Ficus benjamina, otherwise known as the Weeping Ficus or just ficus, are great little flowering trees that also help clean the air you breathe. It will remove formaldehyde, xylene, and toluene. These mini trees take up little space, will thrive without natural light, and can take being drier than usual for those forgetful waterers. It has the potential for getting rather large (as far as mini trees go) but they are easily clipped back to fit where you need them to.
Before you decide which plants you like and rush out to buy some, there are some things you need to consider about your home. Certain plants can cause allergic reactions while others are not good for homes with pets. Cats, in particular, are known for nibbling on leaves and won’t know that the plant they are eating is poisonous to them. The same is true for dogs though there tend to be less cases of poisoning by plant with them versus cats.
If you have birds that you allow to be out of the cage, make sure that the plants they may land on (or nibble on) are safe for them, too!
Other considerations would include your climate, temperature preferences in your home, and sun exposure. Certain plants require direct sunlight for so many hours a day while others prefer the shade. You wouldn’t want to bring a cool weather loving plant in your home if you keep the temperature around 80 degrees (F).
It has been well documented that having house plants can boost your mood, clean the air, and make your home more welcoming. Especially when it is cold outside, house plants remind us that even though it may be freezing outside, it will pass and things will turn green once again!
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