If you follow the news, you get confronted with news reports about the quality of the air in our cities. You might be aware of the air quality around your house, but did you know you can also suffer from poor air quality in your home? There are several options to clean the air in your cozy cocoon, and one of them is decorating your home with air purifying houseplants. These ‘healthy plants’ are not only an affordable and effective option; they also make your home feel like a lush oasis.
Want to learn more about the air purifying quality of houseplants? Check the NASA research.
Do you know the expression ‘having a green thumb’?
Well, I don’t have one. Too much water, too little water, not enough light, too much light. Taking care of plants is difficult! I even manage to kill succulents and cactuses. Feeling like a human version of Roundup, I didn’t dare to come close to a houseplant. Poor plants.
After moving into my new home and having to decorate a very spacious living room, the room felt empty without plants. As a certified plant killer, I made a radical decision: there will be plants in my new home, and I will do my best to keep them alive.
To reduce the risk of plants dying gruesome deaths all around me, I decided to start with some easy houseplants. And they are still alive after a year!
Are you born with a black thumb like me? Our top 8 of air purifying plants is your go-to list! I’ll share my favorite plants plus some other air purifying plants to decorate your cocoon!
My favorite air purifying plants
This plant isn’t just a pretty face. It is also useful! Aloe Vera cleans the air in your home, and it also contains gel you can use for different purposes. Buying a huge Aloe Vera (like I did) may seem like a good idea at first, but it will create some problems. Keep in mind that the leaves of the Aloe Vera will sometimes sag a little. And the more the leaves come down, the more space your Aloe needs. With other houseplants, this isn’t such a big deal: just fold the leaves or branches a little. But Aloe Vera is the stubborn type. Folding the leaves isn’t possible.
Difficulty level: Easy. My mother and I drowned this plant multiple times, and it is still alive and kicking. I would say this isn’t a tough plant to take care off.
Clears the are of formaldehyde
Other benefits: you can harvest your own Aloe Vera gel. How cool is that!
Poisonous?: Yes, for cats and dogs
Don’t overwater this plant. Especially during the winter. If you overwater your Aloe Vera, the leaves will start sagging.
The rubber plant gets its name from the sticky sap it contains. If you scratch the leaves or stem, the fluid will come out. A rubber plant is one the best air purifying houseplants you can buy for your home. I’ve got two of these puppies in my bedroom: the bigger ficus robusta and a cute little ficus decora. These plants are very easy going and grow like a weed. The rubber plant likes light places, but can’t cope with direct sunlight. It’s essential that a ficus gets enough light. My ficus robustica lives in a dark corner in my bedroom, and I can see it suffers from not receiving enough light.
Difficulty level: easy peasy!
Clears the air of benzene, formaldehyde en trichloroethylene
Other benefits: increases the humidity in your room
Poisonous?: Yes, a rubber plant is toxic for your pets (and also for humans)
Dwarf Cavendish Banana
If you like browsing interior photos on Pinterest, you might have swooned over banana plants (I know I did..). The gorgeous big leaves, the tropical vibe, the lush feeling: what is not to like?
I completely fell in love with the big version of the banana plant. Dreaming about a subtropical jungle in my house, I jumped into my car and drove to the nearest garden center. When I entered the store looking for one of those big boys, my dreams got crushed when I discovered they only sold the small version. The tiny version has something cute about it, so I decided to buy one.
The dwarf banana isn’t the easiest plant to keep. It has some diva tendencies, and the leaves are sensitive. You should keep it in a big pot. If your banana tree is healthy, young plants will grow next to the big plant. You can take the small ones out and put them in a separate pot. They make a great gift for friends and family!
Difficulty level: if you are a certified plant killer like me, this is a difficult plant. But it is worth the trouble! The baby plants will give you extra opportunities to be succesful.
Clears the air of formaldehyde
Other benefits: increases the humidity in your room
Poisonous?: this plant is not toxic to cats and dogs
Banana trees like places with high humidity. Fill a spray bottle with water and spray the tree once in a while. Spraying water is also a great way to keep the leaves dust-free.
The best air purifying plants
So these were my favorite air purifying plants! If you are looking for something else, then we have an extra list for you. All these plants got tested in the NASA research. Most of these houseplants are quite common, so maybe you already own one without knowing about its air purifying qualities.
- Snake plant
- Boston fern
- Spider plant
- Bamboo Palm