Whether your home or office is old or new construction, your environment could be contaiminated with invisible chemical compounds that are emitted from paint, plastics, carpet, cleaning solutions and other building materials.
The three top chemical offenders include:
Formaldehyde: In carpets, upholstery, glues, paint and more.
Benzene: In plastics, synthetic fibers, lubricants, rubber and more.
Trichloroethylene: In paint removers, rug cleaning solution, adhesives and more.
In fact, a two-year NASA study was conducted and the published results stated that, "Low-light-requiring houseplants, along with activated carbon plant filters, have demonstrated the potential for improving indoor air quality by removing trace organic pollutants from the air in energy-efficient buildings This plant system is one of the most promising means of alleviating the sick building syndrome associated with many new, energy-efficient buildings". If you are a real science "geek" and would like to review the actual NASA report, click the following button:
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So, in addition to houseplants adding beauty to your home or office, there's real science behind the improvement of your overall living or working environment.
I've listed some of the plants used in the NASA study that proved to remove the highest level of these unwanted chemicals from an interior environment:
Dracaena plants come in several varieties (ie.g., D. fragrans; D. deremensis) and can grow 6 to 10 feet tall. This plant thrives in bright, filtered light and keep the soil moist.
Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)
Peace lilies make excellent houseplants for the home or office and are one of the best plants to absorb various chemical compounds and clean the air of the rooms they are installed in. A well cared for plant will also produce beautiful white flowers. Do not overwater this plant and check the soil to determine if it is dry.
Florist’s Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum morifolium)
The "mum" is at the top of the list to absorb unwanted chemical compounds and will bloom in ideal conditions for 5-6 weeks. This plant requires bright light and the soil must be kept damp at all times. After the flowering period is over, this plant is usually discarded.
Bamboo Palm (Chamaedorea seifrizii)
Since bamboo is a rainforest plant, it prefers filtered light and a cool environment.
It can be easily grown as a houseplant and must be watered regularly. Misting the bamboo plant mimics the humid conditions this plant grows in naturally.
Golden Pothos (Epipremnum aureum)
This houseplant is very hardy, easy to grow in a home or office setting and is considered one of the most effective indoor purifiers of the plant world. Golden Pothos prefers bright, indirect light and water regularly when soil becomes dry.
English Ivy (Hedera helix)
English Ivy is a vigorous grower with trailing vines and is easily grown in pots or hanging baskets. This plant perfers bright light but no direct sun. Keep the soil evenly moist.
Rubber Plant (Ficus elastica)
Rubber plants are bold evergreens from India and Malaysia that gets its name from the sticky sap that dries into a low-quality rubber. It is popular as a houseplant and prefers bright light but no direct sun. Keep the soil evenly moist.
Areca Palm (Chrysalidocarpus lutescens)
Areca palms feature arching fronds and thrives in bright, indirect light. Keep the soil moist and mist occasionally.