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Green Thumb: Household Plants Clean Your Air

I love gardening, but when it comes to keeping house plants my thumb isn't very green.

After learning that common houseplants can help remove toxins from the air, I am going to try my hand at growing houseplants again. While this might not seem like rocket science, NASA performed some research on plants and their ability to absorb toxins, like formaldehyde, found in pressed wood, and benzene, found in glues, paints, furniture wax, and detergents. You can fight indoor air pollution caused by these volatile organic compounds by keeping air purifying plants around your house. It is recommended that you have one plant for every 100 square feet of your living space.

To see if your favorite plant made the top ten list, just

The top ten air purifying plants are:

  1. Areca Palm
  2. Reed Palm
  3. Dwarf Date Palm
  4. Boston Fern
  5. Janet Craig Dracaena
  6. English Ivy
  7. Australian Sword Fern
  8. Peace Lily
  9. Rubber Plant
  10. Weeping Fig

I am curious if you have any of these houseplants. Let me know in the comments section below.


Join The Conversation
michlny michlny 9 years
after I read about this, I went out and bought three plants. I intend on buying more. Water them once a week and it's really simple! Makes a great addition to the home.
luv2blazy luv2blazy 9 years
So maybe that is why my 2 plants are always sick looking. I need 16 more!!!
Spectra Spectra 9 years
I am a terrible houseplant owner...they always die on me. I want to get a fern though...I've heard that they are easy to care for and they look nice, too.
carli79 carli79 9 years
re: the fungus gant problem - I had a problem with these little bugs - it's because you're watering the plants too much. don't water your plants for a couple of weeks. Let them dry out and the fungus gnats will go away, then you can start watering again.
ovenmitt ovenmitt 9 years
wow. way to not check my post before sending it off. "it's radioactive." is how that sentence was supposed to end!
ovenmitt ovenmitt 9 years
My boss smokes at work (which is totally disgusting, i know) so I bought a neon green pothos plant and put it right next to his desk. It handles the smoke really well and cleans the air and every time someone comes in and asks why the plant is a funny color i tell them it's radio I specifically got plants to clean the air in our old loft. some are on the list, but not all. I have an areca palm, a chinese evergreen, dumbcane, arrowhead plant, a peace lily and some others that i'm trying to kill. not really... right now i'm struggling with a fungus gnat problem that's driving me crazy.
jspeed jspeed 9 years
I have a couple pots of ivy - that seems to be the only thing I can keep alive!
Ikandy Ikandy 9 years
I have 2 plants...Im proud to say that Ive had them for 4 years, despite the lack of sunlight in my apartment.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 9 years
I already have 3 gorgeous plants but I want more!!!
Sweet-Adeline Sweet-Adeline 9 years
Peace lily and English Ivy grace my abode--quite purifying, I read.
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
I ♥ my spider plant. :)
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