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Who doesn’t love houseplants? Something about crisp, green, growing leaves seems to brighten up any room. But did you know that houseplants can elevate mood, enhance creativity, promote wellness, and according to studies by NASA, Associated Landscape Contractors of America, and the American Society for Horticultural Science, they also purify indoor air?

Our modern day homes are rife with pollutants that can cause a host of health problems. Chemicals from furniture, floor coverings, paints, detergents, air fresheners, and household cleaners can hover inside poorly ventilated homes, as well as those with good airflow. Fortunately, there are many houseplants that will filter these chemicals and clean air naturally, as well as brighten up your living space.

Below is a list of the best houseplants for cleaning the toxins out of the air in your home:

1. English Ivy

This charming evergreen vine grows happily in low or indirect light conditions. The leaves are poisonous, so keep them away from pets and kids. Fortunately, English Ivy enjoys containers and hanging baskets, and brightens up shelves and dark corners beautifully. Studies have shown that English Ivy is effective at removing benzene, carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, as well as other allergens such as mold and airborne fecal matter. Hang one near your pet’s letterbox, or in the bathroom.

2. Peace Lily

The beautiful broad green leaves and cupped white blooms of the peace lily is a favorite in the NASA study for removing the three most common pollutants: formaldehyde, benzene, and trichloroethylene. Peace lilies will thrive and flower in bright light. They can handle lowlight conditions, though they may not produce blooms. Keep the foliage and flowers clear of dust to maximize their detoxifying power. The plant is poisonous as well, so keep it out of reach of kids and pets.

3. Bamboo Palm

This sturdy palm can grow tall, between 3 to 6 feet, and is an elegant plant in any room. It’s effective at removing the formaldehyde often used in furniture, so arrange it next to chairs, couches, and end tables, in indirect light. During dryer winter months, the bamboo palm can also add a bit of welcome moisture to the air.

4. Ficus

Ficus is a tropical looking evergreen with twisting roots and bright green, shiny leaves. It’s effective at removing pollutants from furniture and carpets, though it can be a bit temperamental to grow. Keep the leaves clear of dust and water moderately.

5. Dracaena

The sword shaped leaves of the Dracena plant can come in a variety of colors and variations, and can easily reach ceiling height when cared for properly. This plant is best for ridding the air of chemicals found in lacquers, varnishes, and gasoline.  Also known as a Corn Plant, the Dracena is a dramatic, but fairly easy plant to maintain.

6. Chrysanthemum

You’re probably already familiar with these colorful flowers. Mums are popular in bouquets, but as a potted plant, they are excellent at filtering out chemicals found in glues, paints, detergents, and plastics. Chrysanthemums love bright light, and add a gorgeous pop of color to any room.

7. Golden Pothos

Pothos are excellent for filtering out formaldehyde and stays green, even if kept in the dark, which makes it ideal for basements and garages.  A proficient grower, Pothos is great in containers and hanging pots where its trailing vines can tumble over the pot’s edge.

8. Snake Plant

A common, if not slightly offensive, nickname for this blade-like plant is mother-in-law’s-tongue. It’s awesome at filtering out chemicals found in toilet paper, tissues, and other toiletry products.  It enjoys low light and humid conditions, which makes it ideal for bathrooms.

9. Spider Plant

Often considered a gift plant, since the Spider Plant produces runners with ‘babies’ that can easily be transplanted. Spider Plants filter out chemicals emitted from leather and rubber. This resilient plant takes very little maintenance, and can get by happily without water.  It will tell you it’s thirsty when the green of the long, skinny, striped leaves fade. A little water will perk it right back up!

10. Aloe

Aloe is an excellent low maintenance plant for sunny locations. It’s great at removing chemicals from paints and chemical cleaning products, and the gel inside the succulent spiked leaves can be used to relieve cuts and burns. Aloe is a slow grower, but it can get quite large.

The recommended rule of thumb is one potted houseplant every 100 square feet, but you really can’t have too many houseplants for good air quality. Here’s a list of even more air cleaning plants. Display plants in groups to maximize their filtering power and create a lovely aesthetic. And then…breathe easy!

Image source: Merec0 / Wikimedia Commons

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93 comments on “10 Best Houseplants for Improving the Air Quality In Your Home”

Click to add comment
Jillian Gustin
1 Years Ago

Sherina Climaco I know you love them plants girl

Sherina Climaco
11 Dec 2016

Good lookin' out! ??? I do love them plants

Diptanu Chaudhuri
1 Years Ago

we can fight climate change, pollution,poverty etc by introducing rooftop plantation all over the world.Roof top plantation should be in govt buildings ,buses,taxi and other vehicles having roof.This will help us to create a fresh, pollution free environment especially in cites all over the world.Laws can be implemented to make rooftop plantation mandatory for each and every building in cities.Birds,butterflies and various insects have become perish in cities.Rooftop plantation will bring back the beautiful birds,bees,butterflies etc which are no longer seen in polluted cities of the world.

Isabella Cristina Vanackere Castellano
1 Years Ago

Borja Buades Rodeño

Paige Bromley
1 Years Ago

Drew Torio

Caroline Duder
1 Years Ago

Vicky Barton

Tiff Anne Edmunds
1 Years Ago

Charlie Anne Smith

Mary Shaw
1 Years Ago

Also spider plants, Palm trees, etc

Michelle Whatley
1 Years Ago

Jason Tittle

Joško Brkić
1 Years Ago

Nice non removable banner covering half the page. Good luck fishing for clicks. Bye now.

One Green Planet
06 Dec 2016

Hi there - are you seeing this on mobile or on the site?

Joško Brkić
06 Dec 2016


Fay Haralabidis
1 Years Ago

Julie Roberts


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