17 houseplants that naturally purify the air

Plants are just as much our ‘babies’ these days as they are pieces of decor.

But they help us as much as we like to think we help them, by purifying the air we breathe with their natural filtering properties.

The EPA estimates we spend around 90% of our time indoors, and with pollution a growing concern in society it makes sense to start thinking out we can make the air around us healthier.

Some plants are better at this than others, and Rick Hoskin, Founder of Filter King knows what we should be looking out for when it comes to our foliage choices.

He tells Metro.co.uk: ‘The air within a home is about ten times more polluted than the air outdoors. Toxins such as carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, and trichloroethylene can cause serious health issues.

‘Houseplants absorb air through their porous leaves, using it to aid in the conversion of light into food. Plants use carbon dioxide during the process of photosynthesis, but they also take in components that are hazardous to our health – isn’t that amazing?’

The team at Filter King have rounded up the 17 best common houseplants that’ll purify your air, with plenty of them only needing minimal care too.

Check them out below.

1. Peace Lily

These easy to care for plants have the ability to remove toxins from the air, making them a very effective supplement for a home air filtration system. However, peace lilies can be toxic when ingested – so keep away from children.

The peace lily enjoys medium to low light, and you should err on the side of underwatering rather than overwatering, which will help you avoid root rot.

2. Garden Mums

Chrysanthemums – with their colourful blooms – are a stunning way to brighten up your home, enjoying sunny spots and moist soil.

Thanks to their superior filtration processes, these flowers are also great at removing pollutants like toluene and ammonia.

3. Devil’s Ivy

Devil’s ivy is easy to maintain, though it does best in direct sunlight. It can also filter numerous airborne pollutants, making it a great option for indoor air purification.

This one is an almost-impossible-to-kill plant, so ideal for people wanting to dip their toe into growing.

4. Red-Edged Dracaena

NASA has identified this plant’s ability to filter particles such as xylene, trichloroethylene, and benzene.

The Madagascar dragon tree or Dracaena Marginata, as it’s also known, can even grow up to 15 feet high in the right conditions.

5. Snake Plant

Known to improve indoor air quality, snake plants are popular among homeowners who want cleaner air but lack the green thumb needed to care for most other houseplants.

You typically don’t need to water them more than every ten days, so people who travel a lot can keep them without worrying too much about a strict watering schedule.

6. Aloe Vera

These plants are known to purify indoor air, and they grow fast while looking great on a table or a bookshelf. 

Better yet, you can cut the stems and use the gel inside for everything from moisturising your hair to applying to athlete’s foot.

7. Bamboo palm

These are some of the best plants for the filtration of formaldehyde, which is a common pollutant in homes.

You will need to trim this back from time to time, as they can grow very large, and it’ll thrive best in moist but well-drained soil.

And here are the rest of the top 17 plants for purifying the air in your home:

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