Not only has indoor foliage been linked to lower blood pressure, anxiety, and fatigue, house plants can also increase the quality of the air we breathe.
This was famously demonstrated in a late 80’s NASA study which sought to neutralize the effects of sick building syndrome within space stations. Certain plants, the study found, can reduce the level of volatile organic compounds in the air that trigger respiratory issues such as allergies or asthma.
Not only do plants mitigate carbon dioxide levels, as they require it for photosynthesis, certain plants also collect airborne contaminants such as benzene, trichloroethylene and formaldehyde – organic compounds emitted by old synthetic building materials, paints, upholstery, furnishings and cleaning products. A study in 2009 further confirmed that house plants can reduce indoor ozone, the primary component of air pollution.
Today we’ll look at a few low-maintenance houseplants that can help purify the air in your home.
With crisp white flowers that bloom year round, Peace Lilies adapt to low light beautifully and collect benzene, an organic compound emitted from household products such as polishes, furniture waxes and paints. They also collect acetone which is a product of cleaners, electronics and certain adhesives. Their one downfall? They are toxic to pets.
The colorful, striped stalks of a snake plat can add a splash of color to any interior while combating levels of formaldehyde and benzene in the air. Their care is pretty straight forward, as they require indirect sunlight and infrequent watering.
Spider plants are among the most popular houseplants due to their easy maintenance and ability to quickly propagate new dangling baby plants. Like snake plants, they require indirect sunlight and can survive a skipped watering or two. They ranked high in NASA’s study due to their ability to collect nitrogen dioxide, trichloroethylene, benzene, and toluene. Plus, they’re dog and cat friendly. There is virtually no excuse not to have one.
Aside from ranking third in the NASA study when it comes to formaldehyde removal, this species has lush, fanning foliage and is very easy to maintain. Bamboo palms tend to thrive when placed in well-drained soil with regular watering.
Red Edged Dracaena
The spikey, red streaked foliage of this variety of Dracaena has become a favorite among house-plant owners. Furthermore, they collect benzene, formaldehyde and other volatile organic compounds such as toluene and xylene. The species prefers bright, indirect sunlight, and tolerates infrequent watering better than over watering.
Looking for new strategies to improve the air quality in your home? The clean air specialists at Superior Air Duct Cleaning are happy to help. Contact us online or give us a call at our toll-free number today to learn more.