We live in a very dry climate, particularly in the winter. This leads to us needing to have the windows closed for just under half of one full year, due to the cold. So you can imagine how very dry and stale our indoor air becomes! I have managed to remedy this situation by growing what is now an incredibly large family of indoor plants. This helps to solve our stale indoor air issue, while providing added beauty to our home by bringing the outdoors, indoors.
Are you wondering why these plants may help in a situation such as this? In the late 1980s, NASA researched indoor plants to see if they would cleanse the air in tightly-sealed space stations. The good news is, you can benefit from their discoveries in your home. It is true that houseplants improve indoor air quality. They absorb some of the toxic chemicals that out-gas from building materials. Some plant varieties are better at this than others. To derive all the cleansing benefits from your houseplants, you will need at least one plant for every 100 square feet of living space.
Read on to discover some of the plants that are the most effective at cleaning indoor air.
1. English Ivy (Hedera helix) is familiar to many as a landscape plant. It also does well indoors. I love English ivy’s so much, that I have recently added another one to my plant family.
Presently it is sitting on top of one of my tall bookshelves, and the leaves are draping down the sides of the shelving unit. It looks especially nice in hanging arrangements.
2. Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum) also does well in hanging pots. I have a large spider plant that I have dubbed “The Mother Plant”. She has been with me for years, and sprouts so many babies that I have potted a great number of other plants from her, as well as given some away as gifts. Another benefit of the spider plant is that pet canaries love them!
3. Golden Pothos (Epipiremnum aureum) is also a vine. Because it climbs or trails, you can train it over an indoor trellis. It does quite well in low-light conditions.
4. Peace Lilies (Spathiphyllum ‘Mauna Loa’) do well in low light as well. That’s why you will often see this plant in waiting rooms, lobbies, and other indoor gathering places.
5. Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema modestum) is another plant that grows in little light. In fact, it doesn’t like a whole lot of water, either, making it quite low-maintenance. The chinese evergreen’s cuttings root easily in water.
6. Boston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata) is especially good at removing formaldehyde from the air. These lush plants look incredibly pretty in bay windows or hanging baskets.
7. Bamboo or Reed Palm (Chamaedorea sefritzii) likes humidity, so you may consider putting it in a bathroom window. You can also spritz it with water each day to help it thrive.
8. Weeping Fig (Ficus benjamina) is actually a tree that will grow indoors. You may find it trained as a bonsai in a traditional pot. It’s another favorite plant of shopping malls and other public centers.
9. Janet Craig Dracaena (Dracaena deremensis ‘Janet Craig’) is a specific type of Dracaena. If you can not find the Janet Craig variety, another Dracaena will do as well. These plants are especially lovely when they are arranged and planted in the center of other plant and floral arrangements. They vary quite a bit, so you can just pick the sort that appeals to you most and fits best in your home.
10. Heartleaf Philodendron (Philodendron scandens ‘oxycardium’) is pest-resistant and prefers low or diffused light (no direct sunlight). Heartleaf Philodendron prefers to be in moist soil.
If you are wanting even more in depth information on the fine art of plant growing and agricultural health, some of the best books I have read (ones, that I might add, are not easy to find), can be found right here.
With such a large collection of plants, I have found that the only way to keep on top of the watering of them is by using a multitude of plant globes, such as these ones here. They also add to the beauty of your indoor plants, especially if you have them in a place where they catch the light.
Of course, water and plants make a wonderful combination – I’m sure we can all agree that plants, particularly leafy ones, thrive when they are near running water. For this purpose, we have a gorgeous indoor rock fountain that we got from this store here, which looks very similar to the one pictured below. They have some stunning works of rock art that won’t break the bank.
The kids are incredibly soothed by it, as well! And to expand this idea a bit, we even now have one sitting right beside our front door. It is only plugged in and turned on in the summer months of course, but we leave it out in the winter as well. It adds such a nice touch for visitors coming to our home. Wishing you all the best in your indoor planting adventures!