BY KIM HUGHES –
There’s a reason the professional designers place them in businesses– they can really change the look of a room and compliment offices, hallways and entries. Many people find them comforting.
But these great living potted life forms can do much more than just look nice. They can also clean the air we breathe. All indoors plants (flowering or not) are able to purify indoor air to some degree through their normal photosynthesis processes. But some were found to be more beneficial than others in removing harmful household toxins, even removing 90% of chemicals in the air in only twenty-four hours!
The three main household toxins of concern are:
These carcinogenic chemicals are used in the manufacturing of synthetic substances and materials and are off-gassed from new materials for some time (up to several years, depending on the material of product in question). Benzene can also be emitted from gas ranges during use, making some types of houseplants great for use in the kitchen.
This means these types of houseplants may just decrease your risk of cancers, asthma, allergies, auto-immune disorders and other diseases.
Here is a list of the most beneficial houseplants for you to use. Aloe Vera, Areca Palm, Baby Rubber Plant, Bamboo Palm, Boston Fern, Chinese Evergreen, Dwarf Date Palm, English Ivy, Ficus Alii, Gerbera Daisy, Golden Pothos, Janet Craig Palm, Kimberly Queen Fern, Lady Palm, Marginata Tree, Moth Orchid, Mums, Peace Lily, Philodendron, Snake Plant, Schefflera, Spider Plant, Warneckii, and Weeping Fig Tree.
Tips for choosing and caring for your house plants:
- Choose one 10- to 12-inch potted plant per 100 square feet of your home for the most effective air purification.
- Consider light requirements of the plants and place accordingly.
- Water plants as needed and use natural fertilizers.
- Periodically dust the leaves with a damp cloth to ensure proper absorption of air particles and toxins.
- If you have children or animals in your home make sure they do not eat parts of the plants as some may be poisonous.
For more detailed plant information contact the Extension Service at 211 DeQueen Street or 479-394-6018.