Indoor air quality is a big deal. People are now really starting to pay attention to indoor air quality and what it means for their overall health. In years past, air pollution was considered to be the result of the quality of outdoor air, but we now know this is only half the story. Poor indoor air quality can not only affect your health, but it can also lead to reduced productivity and cognitive impairment in children.
However, there are many ways in which indoor your air quality can be improved. Today, Central Indiana’s most trusted heating and cooling company – Complete Comfort – will be discussing 5 plants that can improve your indoor air quality.
Before we get started, let’s talk a little about the science of phytoremediation – the treatment by which green plants remove, degrade, or stabilize the air quality inside your home. It was NASA who first discovered and documented that plants can help reduce volatile organic chemicals/compounds found in indoor air when they were researching ways to improve the air quality for astronauts aboard the International Space Station.
NASA’s research showed that pollutants such as formaldehyde, benzene, and ammonia are absorbed by the leaves on green plants. Once trapped inside the leaves of the plant, the VOCs are translocated to the root zone – where microbes within the soil break them down. Generally speaking, almost all green plants possess this ability. When selecting a plant, it’s more important to find one that’s going to be easy to care for and thrive in your home. The leafier the better, we say.
Now, here are the 5 plants we think are the best.
Plants to Improve Indoor Air Quality
Kimberly Queen Fern
Kimberly queen ferns do an excellent job removing VOCs from the air. They’re also easy to care for and make a great addition to the home. These air cleaning plants prefer bright indirect sunlight, but they won’t hold it against you if you bathe them in some direct morning sun.
English Ivies are one of the best plants you’ll find at scrubbing the air – just be sure to find an area in the home near a staircase or trellis – because these plants love to climb. They can grow up to 50-feet in length, but that can take three to five years. And like Steven Seagal, English Ivies are hard to kill – requiring very little water and care once established.
As one of the highest rated air cleaning plants out there, we love bamboo palms. Sure, there are plenty of beautiful tropical plants to choose from, but most of them are going to require bright indirect light. Bamboo palms will grow in just about any light you put them in. Yes – the more light they have, the taller they grow – but you could place a potted bamboo palm in a dark room and it will do just fine.
Rubber plants not only do a fantastic job at cleaning and improving your indoor air quality, but they also class up any room – especially an office or entranceway. These air scrubbers love bright light, but they’d prefer light that is indirect and not too hot. Home offices with plenty of light work well. You may also consider setting your rubber plant near any window that has a shear curtain.
Peace lilies do two things really well: they clean the air, and they release lots of moisture into the air. These beautiful plants are easy to care for, preferring shaded areas of the home. The moisture released makes the plants great for homes where the relative humidity is low and needs to be increased. *We do not recommend the peace lily if you have indoor cats.
While these 5 indoor plants will help improve your indoor air quality, the best way to make sure your home’s air is healthy and breathable is with regular maintenance checkups and air testing. Routine checks on your HVAC system can also save you from an expensive repair later. Our highly trained experts can monitor and improve your indoor air quality – as well as spot signs of larger issues to come. Complete Comfort is Central Indiana’s most trusted heating and cooling system provider, and we’re confident you’ll understand why when you meet us. Call us at (317) 671-7552 to schedule your appointment today!