Add Plants for Better Air Quality


A NASA Study Confirms That Certain Plants Can Filter Air


Scattering simple house plants all over the house is a simple way of uplifting the overall mood of the place. It’s a convenient and affordable way of upgrading your home décor by adding style and color.


But house plants are not just for decorative purposes, certain plant types have the ability to clean and filter the air we breathe, a major benefit for better family health.

We’ve learned in the past that green plants produce fresh air. However, if we take into consideration the amount of pollution and toxic substances in the air, simply producing fresh air is not enough.

Fortunately, NASA conducted a study in 1989 regarding the ability of several house plants to purify air. Named as the Clean Air Study, the research shows the specific types of plants that have this essential ability and also the types of toxins these plants can filter. The study goes as far as explaining what bad effects these toxins can cause in living organisms.


What are the toxins present in our air?

  • Trichloroethylene- can be found in paints, thinners, lacquers, printing inks and adhesives
  • Formaldehyde- seen in synthetic fabrics, facial tissues, plywood panels, paper bags, and table napkins
  • Benzene- ingredient used in making dyes, glue, wax, paint, plastics, detergents, and pesticides
  • Xylene- present in leather, tobacco, rubber, and vehicle exhaust
  • Ammonia- abundant in fertilizers, floor waxes, and window cleaners


Effects in humans?

  • Trichloroethylene- causes dizziness, vomiting, drowsiness, headache and coma
  • Formaldehyde- short term exposure may result in nose, mouth, throat irritation and swelling of the lungs
  • Benzene- exposure may cause eye irritation, dizziness, unconsciousness and heart rate increase
  • Xylene- causes confusion, headache, heart problems, coma, and damage to kidneys and liver
  • Ammonia- results in coughing, sore throat and irritation of the eyes


Air-filtering plants we need?

  • Boston fern- filters formaldehyde and xylene
  • Spider plant- filters formaldehyde and xylene
  • Chinese evergreen- filters formaldehyde and xylene
  • Kimberley queen fern- filters formaldehyde and xylene
  • Lilyturf- filters xylene, trichloroethylene and ammonia
  • Bamboo palm- filters formaldehyde and xylene
  • Weeping fig- filters formaldehyde and xylene
  • Dwarf date palm- filters formaldehyde and xylene
  • Peace lily- filters all toxins
  • Florist’s chrysanthemum- filters all toxins
  • English ivy- filters xylene, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene
  • Barberton daisy- filters xylene, formaldehyde, benzene and trichloroethylene
  • Varigated snake plant- filters xylene, formaldehyde, benzene and trichloroethylene
  • Red-edged dracaena- filters xylene, formaldehyde, benzene and trichloroethylene


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