Green Thumb Alert – Indoor Plants for Cleaner Indoor Air

If you are like most homeowners, you would probably be surprised to learn that the air inside your Lakewood Ranch, FL home could be more contaminated than the air outside your home. That is because pollen, allergens, mold spores and other contaminants can easily be trapped inside your house. Some of the toxins such as xylene, acetone, toluene, methylene ethyl acetate and chloroform can aggravate allergy symptoms and exacerbate asthma, while seriously degrading your indoor air quality.

Indoor Plants to the Rescue

When you begin projects such as new carpet installation or painting, the materials used can release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and chemicals that pollute indoor air. The best options for combating air contaminants are installing a whole-house air-purification system or using HEPA filtration in your existing heating and cooling system. However, NASA scientists and the Associated Landscape Contractors of America, have recently stated that their research shows that one of the most effective humidifiers and best air purifiers are common houseplants.

While houseplants are not a replacement for a high-quality HVAC filtering system, for ensuring cleaner indoor air, they can:

  • Remove harmful gases from indoor air.
  • Absorb pollutants
  • Enhance air quality by fighting indoor air pollution.


Clean and Green

Some of the best air-scrubbing houseplants include:

English Ivy

This sturdy, easy-care, climbing vine does well in small spaces, and thrives in rooms with little sunlight and few windows. Its thick foliage absorbs formaldehyde—the most common indoor pollutant, which emits from wooden floor resins and dyes from synthetic carpets.

Spider Plant

A beautiful houseplant sporting long narrow leaves, the spider plant grows quickly and requires little care. It excels at removing poisonous gases and impurities such as formaldehyde and xylene and formaldehyde, making it one of the best air purifiers. Placed in your kitchen or near the fireplace, it removes accumulated carbon monoxide.

Boston Fern

The Boston fern acts like a natural humidifier, releasing moisture into the air. It grows well in filtered sunlight, where its graceful. Frilly fronds remove several toxic air pollutants, including xylene, formaldehyde and benzene.

Peace Lily

This classic Easter favorite is among the few air purifiers that flower. It grows well in low lighting areas, but does require weekly watering. Peace lily blooms year-round, while it’s ridding the air of the VOC benzene, a carcinogen found in furniture polishes, waxes and paints. It also absorbs acetone emitted by adhesives, electronics and certain cleaners.

Snake Plant

This popular ornamental is tolerant of low lighting and irregular watering. NASA scientists have discovered that the snake plant has the ability to absorb formaldehyde, nitrogen oxide, and a variety of other airborne chemicals.

Chinese Evergreen

This common perennial is a favorite, due to its attractive, shiny, green leaves. An excellent air-purifier plant, it flourishes in low light and with minimal watering. It filters out toxins such as benzene and formaldehyde.

For more information about improving your indoor air quality, contact the experts at Custom Air Heating and Cooling. We have proudly served both residential and commercial customers throughout the Sarasota and Manatee Counties for more than 20 years.

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