When working from home or your office, have you ever felt suffocated or distracted? An air purifying plant could help you, especially if you work in a closed environment. The addition of a little pot on your desk, of a hanging plant on your ceiling, or a big vase on the floor will brighten up any your space and make your breathe a little easier. Plants are not only good for decor, they reduce the numbr or particles floating around in the air.
As many already know, plants purify the air all around them, whether they’re tall trees or little cacti. This phenomenon, recognised around the world, even grabbed the attention of a prestigious scientific organisation, the NASA. In 1989, NASA’s researchers started to get interested in the different possible uses of plants as air filters. They combined an air filter and a plant, and were able to discover the beneficial qualities of green plants. Their experiment went as follows: a large quantity of contaminated air was passed through an activated carbon filter, where the smoke, organic chemical elements and pathogenetic microorganisms was absorbed. The plants’ roots and their respective microorganisms then destroyed the pathogenetic viruses, bacteria and organic components, transforming them into new plant tissue, like flowers and leaves.
Here is a list of the 10 best plants to keep at home if you want to breathe fresher air!
1. Pothos (scindapsus)
The Pothos plant, quite trendy these days, is well adapted to fast propagation and is an indoor plant that is incredibly easy to take care of. It’s recognisable thanks to its shiny leaves, sometimes marbled, in the shape of a heart. It gets rid of toxins such as xylene, benzene, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene. It need some sunlight, but never direct, and water when the soil is dry.
2 Palm Tree (Phoenix Roebelenii)
The Phoenix Reobelenii are the smallest of their palm tree family but can still get as tall as 10 feet in certain environments. These mini palm trees need moderate to abundant sunlight and regular watering when the soil is dry. They eliminate toxins such as formaldehyde and xylene.
3 Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)
Peace lilies are well appreciated thanks to their white flowers, which give them a sophisticated and modern air. They are very easy to take care of and don’t need a lot of light. A weekly watering and yearly fertilisation in Spring will make it the happiest plant in your home! They used in particular to eliminate benzene, carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene and xylene.
The Philodendron, or philos, is easy to take care of since it only needs a moderate amount of water and a lot of indirect sunlight. Its large heart-shaped leaves are particularly recognisable, though multiple types of philodendra are available on the market which can satisfy your personal tastes. They can all eliminate formaldehyde.
5 Spider Plant (Chlorophytum Comosum)
The spider plant got its nickname from its disheveled appearance, with its long cream and green leaves. It’s the perfect choice for those who don’t have a lot of confidence in their botanist talents yet, since it’s practically indestructible. It needs indirect light and water when the soil is dry but can survive in (almost) all conditions. It eliminates formaldehyde and xylene.
6 Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum Moifolium)
Chrysanthemums are well known for their perfect addition they make in a bouquet, more so than for their beneficial properties as a plant. These plants are actually the best air purifiers in the world! They are however quite difficult to take care of, since they take a long time to bloom and need good air circulation, strong indirect light and lukewarm watering when the soil is completely dry. They can eliminate ammonia, benzene, formaldehyde, and xylene.
7 Rubber Plant (Ficus Elastica)
The rubber plant is a tall interior plant that can reach up to 3 meters. It needs a humid environment and a lot of light. The plant and its leaves are very solid, which gave it it’s “rubber” nickname. It eliminates xylene, benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene.
8 Boston Fern (Nephrolepis Exaltata)
The Boston Fern is well known for its long leaves composed of sword-shaped fronds. It’s the perfect shape for a hanging plant! However, it’s quite a temperamental plant, since it needs a very humid environment, which means its soil cannot be left to dry and it needs regular spraying. Moreover, it needs a lot of indirect sunlight. It can eliminate formaldehyde and xylene.
9 Areca Palm (Chrysalidocarpus Lutescens)
The only plant on this list not to be toxic for animals, this plant is perfect for any home, especially for large spaces. This palm tree needs a lot of water a few times a week during summer and is incredibly powerful to purify air. Il eliminates benzene, carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, and xylene.
10 Pineapple Plant
NASA discovered that the pineapple plant could stop snoring! It doesn’t eliminate any toxins, but it produces oxygen that can help improve air quality. It makes it possible to sleep deeper and, therefore can help reduce snoring. It is a very resistant plant that doesn’t need a lot of care, but it doesn’t like cold temperatures, and needs more attention in winter.