Unless you live in the far reaches of the country, in the middle of the ocean on a deserted island or in a cave high up in the mountains, chances are you’re breathing in some less than fresh air. Especially as a city dweller, air pollution is rampant. Just stand on a rooftop or go above the 20th floor of whichever urban setting you’re in for confirmation! That hazy smog is all the confirmation you need, and even though it’s outside, it’s actually inside your house too. From aerosols, toxins, smoke and other gross things we’re inhaling while hanging around, it’s no surprise that even our households are affected!
What you have indoors can also contribute to the air quality like solvents for cleaning, glues, hairsprays, fire retardants found in paints, computers, TVs… the list goes on. We can help purify the air in our homes with a few simple plants. They’re pretty, low-maintenance and are proven to improve air quality. Why not give it a whirl?
Disclaimer: While these plants are fantastic for improving household air quality, remember, to purify the air, they must absorb the toxins, therefore, becoming toxic. They should NOT be ingested by humans or pets.
12. Mother-in-Law’s Tongue
First time with indoor plants? No sweat. This one is good for beginners. While they require lots of light, the Mother-in-Law’s Tongue doesn’t need lots of water. And, it’s good for ridding the air you breathe of nitrogen oxide, and trichloroethylene which is found in refrigerants and solvents that remove grease from metals.
11. Spider Plants
If you need a low-maintenance plant, this one sure is resilient. You don’t green thumbs. Its lush foliage and plethora of teeny tiny white flowers help absorb any wafting formaldehyde and carbon monoxide.
10. Golden Pothos
The Golden Pothos helps you breathe better by removing indoor air toxins. And, it doesn’t like being too moist, so if you forget to water it now and again, no biggie!
9. Dracaena Plants
Resembling a mini palm tree, this cool-looking plant is one of the most effective at removing volatile organic compounds like benzene and xylene.
Also known as a Weeping Fig or Ficus Tree, this evergreen plant needs warmth and lots of water, but does a great job at breathing in airborne toxins and breathing out freshness!
7. Rubber Plant
These towering, oval-shaped leafy plants not only leave a lasting – gorgeous – impression, they are superb at sucking up carbon monoxide.
6. Boston Fern
These lively plants have been used indoors since Victorian times! Cigarette smoke, airborne plastics and formaldehyde found in cleaners and detergents are lessened with a Boston Fern hanging around.
5. Aloe Vera
Not only is this succulent fantastic for topically curing burns and rashes, this easy-to-grow plant helps clear chemical-based cleaner and paint by-products. This is a must-have for every household.
4. Dragon Plant
Another plant that needs little maintenance, the Dragon Plant is spiky and full of personality! This guy is perfect for absorbing xylene found in varnishes, paints and household thinners (artists, listen up!). Just try not to use fluoridated water as it’s a little bit delicate.
3. Pot Mum
Colourful and sprightly, the Pot Mum is inexpensive and readily available at most garden centres. Plus, once they’ve bloomed, you can plant them outside if you like. These bright babies are air-purifying champions and suck up ammonia and other air contaminants.
2. English Ivy
This creepy crawly vine may be considered a weed by some, but it’s a lifesaver to others! English Ivy helps to substantially reduce the amount of mould and dog faeces floating around in the air. This is a vine, however, and tends to take over, so you might have to replant it outside when it gets too big.
1. Peace Lily
This sprouting beauty barely even needs sun to keep your home fresh! The Peace Lily shouldn’t be in direct sunlight and likes to live in the shade. Plus, this peaceful and happy camper is the most efficient at removing volatile organic compounds!