Everyone has a couple of houseplants somewhere in their home and there are a number known to purify the air and absorb harmful pollutants from your indoor environment. Through photosynthesis, house plants pull volatile organic compounds (VOCs) out of the air and absorb them through their soil, therefore it’s best to trim the lower leaves, so that the soil can be exposed. My understanding is it’s good to have a cluster of plants located in one area rather than just one plant here and there. With everyone using electrical devices, paints, and household cleaners these days, it’s great to know that these houseplants act as filters and can literally clean and purify the air we breathe.
1 Bamboo Palm
This is one of the best houseplants out there for purifying the air, mainly because it can get rid of all sorts of chemicals and it’s an elegant choice too. It can handle the shady spots in the house, like dark corners and under the stairs, and it can eliminate carbon monoxide, benzene, formaldehyde, xylene, chloroform and more, making it the best choice for the laundry room, living room or bedroom.
2 English Ivy
Although the English Ivy plant is technically a weed in the garden (it attaches to bark, brickwork and threatens all kinds of forests and open spaces), it can also been potted as an ornamental plant that can handle shady, low-light conditions indoors. It’s good at eliminating benzene, carbon monoxide, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene, as well as absorbing particles of fecal matter, making it a great choice for the bathroom.
3 Rubber Plant
Rubber plants are from India and are part of the evergreen family. They like a lot of bright light and need a fair amount of water and fertilizer to keep them healthy. You may need to prune them a little to reduce the plant size. Some rubber plants have a purple tinge to their leaves while others are creamier in color. This is the best choice for eliminating carbon monoxide, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene, a bi-product of the dry cleaning process, making it a good suitable for the laundry room or living room (as some furniture gives off formaldehyde).
4 Areca Palm
The Areca Palm like the Bamboo Palm is fantastic for getting rid of lots of indoor chemicals. It’s smaller and has arch-like leaves that are attractive and graceful looking! The Areca Palm however, needs more sunlight and water to keep it growing healthily. It’s a great choice for humidifying the air as well as eliminating benzene (found in many paints), carbon monoxide, xylene, trichloroethylene and formaldehyde.
Chrysanthemums typically only last for six weeks before it is finished blooming, but in that amount of time not only does it look pretty, it does a great job at purifying the air. Place one of these plants in bright, indirect sunlight and check the soil every day for moisture. It’s a great choice for eliminating formaldehyde, xylene, benzene and ammonia.
6 Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is best known for its healing properties as it’s used a lot for treating burns, cuts, bites and other skin irritations. Yet, it is equally powerful as an air cleaner too. It loves the sunshine, so any sunny windowsill in the house will do and it’s good for eliminating benzene and formaldehyde.
Azaleas are great to have around during the fall, as they tend to thrive better in cooler temperatures. They’re the best when placed in basements, bathrooms and kitchens, as they absorb lots of formaldehyde (more than any other plant on this list). Formaldehyde is a known carcinogen typically found in wall finishes and insulation as well as in some toiletries (nail polishes).
I hope that you get to purchase one of these plants for your home and I love the fact that there are antidotes available to purify the indoor chemicals we’re exposed to in our homes. Do you have any of these plants in your home?