10 Air-Purifying Plants For Your Home Or Office (Part 1)
- Written by Alicia Drewnicki
- October 14, 2019
- 5 min read
At Honestly Good, we’re huge nature lovers, and believe that you can never have too many plants in your home. Our leafy companions are more than just pretty faces though – did you know that there are certain plants act as air purifiers? NASA conducted a Clean Air Study and found out that some plants are particularly effective at filtering chemicals and pollutants from the air in our living spaces.
In case you’re wondering how chemicals get in our homes, this can be from many household items and fluids, including paint, cleaning liquids, carpets, glues, furniture wax, air fresheners, upholstery, or synthetic materials.
Here’s our Honestly Good lowdown of 10 fantastic air-purifying plants and how to care for them:
1) Peace Lily
In A Nutshell: One of the top air purifying plants with beautiful white blooms and glossy green leaves.
What It Helps With: Peace lilies break down a variety of toxic gases including carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, xylene, trichloroethylene, and benzene.
Top Tips: These plants are tropical, so make sure they don’t get a cold breeze from an open door or window. Give them medium indirect sunlight, and if no flowers appear, it’s likely to be because the plant isn’t getting enough light, so move it to a brighter location. Also – look out for drooping leaves, as this plant gives a clue it’s thirsty by its telltale droop. A weekly drink should do the trick. Finally, peace lilies like high humidity, so misting their leaves will keep them happy.
2) Florist’s Chrysanthemum
In A Nutshell: The perfect addition to brighten up your home. Florist’s chrysanthemum plants are typically grown outdoors, but can also be brought inside your home during the colder months.
What It Helps With: Colorful and fierce, they stack up as one of the best flowering plants for cleansing the air of formaldehyde, benzene, and ammonia.
Top Tips: Look for a plant with plenty of buds, make sure they have indirect sunlight, water with warm water, and remember to deadhead them frequently.
3) English Ivy
In A Nutshell: A great pick to add some character to your home, and trail down shelves.
What It Helps With: Ideal for the bathroom, English Ivy can help purify the air of mould, formaldehyde, and benzene.
Top Tips: Put your ivy on a windowsill that has at least four hours of sunlight a day – ivy plants prefer medium to bright light, and won’t survive as well in low light conditions. Be careful not to overwater your ivy – wait until the top inch of soil is dry before watering.
4) Snake Plant (Sansevieria)
In A Nutshell: This hardy plant also has the nickname “mother-in-law’s tongue” and is the perfect low maintenance choice for plant beginners.
What It Helps With: This plant works hard while you sleep, as it releases oxygen at night (which makes it a great bedroom plant), and it filters benzene, toluene, xylene, formaldehyde, and trichloroethylene from the air.
Top Tips: Perfect for low to medium light environments, just remember not to over water it as its roots are prone to rotting.
5) Boston Fern
In A Nutshell: A lush green plant that if treated well boasts bountiful textured divided leaves (known as fronds). A real show-stopper.
What It Helps With: It helps remove formaldehyde which can be sometimes be found in air fresheners, upholstery, and even certain nail varnishes.
Top Tips: These plants are native to swamps and tropical areas, so they’re good in high humidity areas with indirect/filtered light (such as your bathroom). Remember to mist the leaves regularly and keep the soil moist. Trim the fronds when they’re dried up to keep the plant looking healthy.
6) Red-edged Dracaena (Dragon Tree)
In A Nutshell: A spiky and easy to care for tree with a lot of character and a flash of red on the edges of its leaves.
What It Helps With: It’s great for filtering airborne xylene and trichloroethylene.
Top Tips: Perfect for a spot with indirect sun, these plants have the potential to grow over 6ft high in the right conditions. Water when the soil dries out, and mist the leaves frequently.
7) Barberton Daisy (Gerbera Daisy)
In A Nutshell: A bright and beautiful colour boost for the home – these flowering pot plants are native to South Africa and can grow up to two feet tall.
What It Helps With: These plants cleanse the air of benzene, formaldehyde, and trichloroethylene – sometimes found in paints, and synthetic fibres.
Top Tips: They love light! Keep in a room with curtains open and lots of natural light, and keep the soil moist.
8) Spider Plant
In A Nutshell: A cost-effective and resilient houseplant that keeps on giving – spider plants have long grass-like leaves and are known for producing “spiderettes” that you can cut off and replant.
What It Helps With: Spider plant – we salute you! These amazing plants remove formaldehyde and carbon monoxide from the air. They’re so effective that when put in a sealed chamber, they removed 95% of formaldehyde in 24 hours.
Top Tips: They love indirect sunlight and are easy to look after. If leaves turn brown, this might be because of fluoride in water, so feed with distilled water instead. Repot the ‘spiderettes’ in a new pot and watch your spider plant family grow.
9) Broadleaf Lady Palm
In A Nutshell: This long leafed palm grows almost 2 metres tall, so is the perfect statement piece for a living room or office.
What It Helps With: Talk about palm power! This beautiful specimen removes ammonia, formaldehyde, xylene, and toluene from the air.
Top Tips: Surprisingly, this palm doesn’t need a lot of light, and survives well for low light areas of the home.
10) Dwarf Date Palm
In A Nutshell: A hardy slow-growing plant that’s the baby of the palm family.
What It Helps With: It’s known for its ability to filter out xylene and formaldehyde.
Top Tips: Put the plant in a spot with bright indirect sun, and keep the soil moist and well drained.
So there you have it – 10 amazing air-purifying plants for the home. Before purchasing them, please be aware that some plants aren’t suitable for households with pets and children, so be sure to look them up first to check they’re child and pet-safe. Look out for Part 2 coming soon with even more amazing air-purifying natural wonders.