Using Plants as an Alternative to Air Purifiers

In Uncategorized by Matty Byloos1 Comment

How to Use House Plants as Air Purifiers in the Home

House Plants as Air PurifiersAre you troubled by the quality of air in your workspace or home? Unsure about the effectiveness or quality of those popular air filters? Maybe you just want another method of cleaning the air inside your home or office without having to add to your power bill. You do have a viable option that you can use instead of an air purifier. You can begin cleansing and purifying that indoor air with the help of some hardy, and inexpensive, green plants.

Unseen Problems in the Air
For most people it is the air inside that is more aggravating than the air they breathe when they are spending time outdoors. The doors and windows are frequently closed which means that many pollutants are being trapped and constantly circulating throughout a home or office.

Just think about how many odors, gases, chemicals and other contaminants might be circulating in your home at this very moment? Then there are additional problems such as animal hair, pet dander, bacteria, mold and an assortment of other allergens.

In fact the usual home is host to numerous contaminants at any given time. That new carpet you are installing is emitting toxic fumes that are often quite noxious as well. Paint, detergents and household cleaners only compound this problem.

Air Filter Options When It Comes to Using House Plants
You can opt for an air filter that can be used to clean and purify that indoor air but why not choose a ‘greener’ alternative? Plants are a perfect solution when someone wants an effective and efficient filtering system for indoor air. Indoor plants are also a great deal less expensive than the mechanical air filters that are available.

Houseplants Do Purify the Air
The effectiveness of using green plants for this purpose has even been documented by independent studies conducted by NASA officials. The simple use of houseplants can remove carbon dioxide, ammonia fumes, benzene and even eliminate formaldehyde odors from an enclosed environment. You can refresh the air in a home, garage or other enclosed environment by placing a few green plants on shelves or on the floor. Hanging some plants from the ceiling is another option to consider.

How Plants Filter and Clean Indoor Air
The leaves, roots and stems of a green plant can serve as air filters. Polluting odors, toxic substances and other contaminating agents can be absorbed into the plant and in return the plant will release clean oxygen into the air. Many people have found that common allergies and breathing ailments are reduced or even resolved once a few green plants are placed in the home.

Making Space for Air Purifying Plants
It really does not require a lot of extra room for the placement of some houseplants. You can arrange a few plants on a desk, coffee table, kitchen window sill or set them on a shelf. Larger plants can be put into attractive containers and placed in a corner of the room where they will even add visual impact along with those air purifying benefits.

Any room can house at least one or two green plants. You should consider placing some plants in the bedrooms, family room, kitchen and workshop. These are all rooms that are prone to the highest amount of toxins and pollutants.

What Plants to Choose When Using House Plants to Purify Air?
While any plant can help cleanse the indoor air you should look for some of the varieties that have large leaves. The more leaf area the plant has the better it will function as a natural air filtration unit.

Best Varieties of Air Purifying Houseplants
Palms (Dwarf date, bamboo, reed or areca)
Peace Lily
Ivy (English or other hardy varieties)
Ferns (Boston, Australian Sword)
Snake Plant (Mother-in-Law’s Tongue)
Rubber Tree Plants
Spider Plant

Rubber Tree plants, Dracaena and most ferns are able to filter out a wide array of toxic odors, fumes and pollutants. If you have a room where available lighting is limited and the indoor environment may prove harsh for some houseplants consider using the spider plant, a Christmas cactus or snake plant. These are plants that can thrive even if they are neglected or have to survive in less than ideal environmental conditions.

Maintenance and Care of Air Purifying House Plants
A good rule of thumb is to have one or two (6-10 inch plants) per every 150-200 square feet of living space. You can mix and match the variety of plants according to your personal preferences.

Always choose healthy, vibrant plants and replace them on an ‘as needed’ basis. Provide the plants with a suitably sized container. Give these living air filters adequate water, plant food and fertilizer and make sure that they receive the amount of direct sunlight or filtered light that they need. Other than these basic requirements your houseplants have few demands.

Let Plants Do the Work for Free
Unlike a mechanical air filter these houseplants can continue to perform their purification and air cleansing duties for years if you provide them with a little routine maintenance and care. Even if the power supply is interrupted these natural air filters will remain on the job, working hard to keep the indoor air healthy and free of contaminants.

* * *

Learn even more now about the Best Indoor Plants for Healthy Air in the Home.

This has been a guest post for Easy Ways to Go Green, by M.H. Bio: M.H is sharing honest and well researched air purifier reviews and ratings at

(Photo Via: Nylokal)


  1. This is so interesting! I had never heard of using plants to filter and clean indoor air. This is something we can all do to help make our homes more environmentally friendly.

Leave a Comment