air-filterig houseplantsBack in the 80’s, the Associated Landscape Contractors of America and NASA analyzed houseplants for their ability to clean air in space centers. They discovered that there are some specific plants that are most effective at filtering volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the air. The great news is that these same houseplants can filter the air in our homes and office buildings as well.

The air in buildings is often much more polluted than the air outside. There are several houseplants you can have in your home or at work to cleanse the air you breathe most often. Many of these plants are low-maintenance. Plant them in pots that you really like and they will double as decor. Now, you can breathe deeply. Here are some suggestions on which houseplants are the best at filtering the air:

1. Aloe (Aloe vera)

This easy-to-grow, sun-loving succulent helps clear formaldehyde and benzene, which can be a byproduct of chemical-based cleaners, paints and more. Aloe is a smart choice for a sunny kitchen window. Beyond its air-clearing abilities, the gel inside an aloe plant can help heal cuts and burns.

2. Spider plant (Chlorophytum comosum)

Even if you tend to neglect houseplants, you’ll have a hard time killing this resilient plant. With lots of rich foliage and tiny white flowers, the spider plant battles benzene, formaldehyde, carbon monoxide and xylene, a solvent used in the leather, rubber and printing industries. As an added bonus, this plant is also considered a safe houseplant if you have pets in the house.

3. Gerber daisy (Gerbera jamesonii)

This bright, flowering plant is effective at removing trichloroethylene, which you may bring home with your dry cleaning. It’s also good for filtering out the benzene that comes with inks. Add one to your laundry room or bedroom — presuming you can give it lots of light.

4. Snake plant (Sansevieria trifasciata ‘Laurentii’)

Also known as mother-in-law’s tongue, this plant is one of the best for filtering out formaldehyde, which is common in cleaning products, toilet paper, tissues and personal care products. Put one in your bathroom — it’ll thrive with low light and steamy humid conditions while helping filter out air pollutants.

5. Golden pothos (Scindapsus aures)

Another powerful plant for tackling formaldehyde, this fast-growing vine will create a cascade of green from a hanging basket. Consider it for your garage since car exhaust is filled with formaldehyde. (Bonus: Golden pothos, also know as devil’s ivy, stays green even when kept in the dark.)

6. Chrysanthemum (Chrysantheium morifolium)

The colorful flowers of a mum can do a lot more than brighten a home office or living room; the blooms also help filter out benzene, which is commonly found in glue, paint, plastics and detergent. This plant loves bright light, and to encourage buds to open, you’ll need to find a spot near an open window with direct sunlight.

7. Red-edged dracaena (Dracaena marginata)

The red edges of this easy dracaena bring a pop of color, and the shrub can grow to reach your ceiling. This plant is best for removing xylene, trichloroethylene and formaldehyde, which can be introduced to indoor air through lacquers, varnishes and gasoline.

These are some great ideas. I can attest to the fact that the golden pothos plants are very hardy since I left mine in a hot car for a few hours. It survived! To see eight additional suggestions, view the original article at Mother Nature Network.

Source: Mother Nature Network

Image Source: Audrey


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