Indoor plants do more than just liven up a room – they also clean the air you breathe. Here’s what you need to know about choosing and caring for houseplants that freshen your indoor air.
Benefits of Indoor Plants
One primary reason people keep houseplants is to improve indoor air quality. They achieve this by reducing carbon dioxide levels and airborne dust. Some can even filter out volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as benzene, formaldehyde, ammonia, and xylene.
Certainly, filling your house with plants helps to ensure clean indoor air, but that’s not all. Here are some of the other benefits of indoor plants beyond air filtration:
- Houseplants reduce stress levels and increase feelings of well-being.
- Indoor plants improve productivity, learning abilities, and clarity of mind.
- Foliage absorbs sound to reduced background noise from indoor and outdoor sources.
- Potted plants act as beautiful, inexpensive home décor.
Houseplants that Clean the Air
Our top picks for beautiful, easy-to-care-for plants that freshen indoor air include:
- Peace lily: The lush, dark green foliage and delicate white flowers of the peace lily make it many people’s favorite. Keep the plant in a cool room with indirect sunlight and water it when the leaves begin to droop, slightly.
- Rubber plant: This hardy houseplant has thick, leathery leaves and thrives even in dimly lit rooms. Keep the soil moderately dry to help it reach its maximum potential.
- Boston fern: This graceful little plant does best in indirect sunlight and humid conditions. Keep the soil moist and mist the leaves with a spray bottle once a week.
- Aloe vera: Place this succulent on a sunny windowsill and water it only in the driest conditions. Not only does it improve indoor air quality, but you can also cut into the leaves to access healing gel for treating burns.
- Sanseveria: The stiff, upright leaves of this hardy plant can reach four feet tall with very little care. Place it in a bright room, water it occasionally, and enjoy its air-cleaning benefits.
- Spider plant: This makes the perfect hanging plant, with clumps of long, curving leaves that hang downward in a beautiful cascade. The resilient spider plant survives despite forgetful watering, though it does require bright, indirect sunlight to thrive. Rotate the pot weekly to encourage balanced growth.
General Houseplant Care Tips
In addition to the specific watering and sunlight requirements mentioned above, help your houseplants stay healthy and beautiful with these additional tips:
- Dust the leaves frequently. Your houseplants are part of your décor, so keep them looking pristine with a quick swipe of a wet sponge or microfiber cloth once a month.
- Prune your plants. Trim yellowing leaves, cut dead stems down to the soil line and clip old, drooping buds to help promote new plant growth.
- Watch out for insects. Check the leaves, stems, and soil regularly for changes that could signal a pest infestation. If found, pursue a treatment suitable for the type of plant and the insects infesting it.
Get Help with Household Cleaning
Indoor plants may help promote fresh air, but you still need to keep up with general household cleaning, including dusting the very plants you entrust to filter the air you breathe. If you don’t have the time or patience for household chores, hire Molly Maid for guaranteed, contract-free house cleaning services. We’ll free up your time so you can do more of the things you love.