12 Houseplants for a Healthier Home
There is a lot to love about houseplants: they can brighten up and decorate a room while consuming the CO2 we exhale, releasing oxygen that we breathe in turn. It is a very symbiotic relationship between humans and plants. But did you know that certain houseplants have added health benefits? According to NASA’s Clean Air Study, a number of indoor plants can remove airborne toxins including benzene and formaldehyde. Many plants also have therapeutic scents that can alleviate stress and anxiety. Below, we have listed a few of the best houseplants that can lead to a healthier home, and thus, a healthier you.
- Snake Plant – The snake plant is a great find for your bedroom. Unlike many other plants, it continues to convert CO2 to oxygen at night, meaning a better night’s sleep for you.
- Gerbera – This plant also consumes CO2 at night as well as removing chemicals from the air. This plant is highly recommended for individuals with sleep apnea or allergies.
- Rosemary – While rosemary is a great herb for cooking, it also can reduce anxiety and improve memory. If that wasn’t enough, it is also known to help repel mosquitoes.
- Lavender – Lavender is best known as an aromatherapy that helps with anxiety, but it can also improve your sleep if you keep some near your bed. It lowers your heart rate, blood pressure, and general stress level, all of which help induce sleep. This scented plant also helps repel mosquitoes.
- English Ivy – This plant not only removes formaldehyde, but also mold and animal feces from the air, improving air quality and reducing allergies.
- Spider Plant – Spider plants are notoriously easy to care for, and for this reason are one of the most common starter houseplants. Besides being handy for a homeowner without a green thumb, spider plants remove harsh chemicals like formaldehyde and carbon monoxide from the air (both commonly found in cigarette smoke) and can benefit those who suffer from headaches.
- Aloe Vera – You may already use aloe topically to help alleviate the pain of sunburns, but it can also help clear the air of benzene, which can be found in paint and chemical cleaners.
- Peace Lily –The peace lily looks fabulous while removing benzene, formaldehyde, carbon monoxide, and mold spores from the air. It is a great choice for anyone with allergies or breathing issues.
- Golden Pothos – Also a great starter plant, golden pothos are particularly difficult to kill. One of the most highly praised beneficial houseplants, it removes benzene and carbon monoxide from the air while requiring little light and irregular watering.
- Ferns – Ferns increase air humidity which can benefit those with dry skin.
- Chrysanthemums – These pretty flowers attract us humans, but effectively repel all sorts of pests including roaches, ants, ticks, fleas, and bedbugs.
- Marigold – Another beautiful flower whose scent, fortunately for us, can repel mosquitos and even rodents.
We hope that with this list, you’ll be well-equipped next time you head to your local plant nursery to pick up some new leafy roommates. If you have pets, check online to be sure that the plant you plan on buying is non-toxic to animals. For more tips on homeownership, visit the rest of our blog posts at www.nwwvt.org/blog.
Author: Jillian Branchaud, Community Engagement AmeriCorps Member