Even in warm, humid Coastal Bend, Texas, it can get downright chilly. So like our neighbors further north, we close our windows and turn on the furnace. But in times of prolonged cold weather, our houses become stuffy and the air gets stale. Opening a window can let out the heated air, forcing the furnace to work harder, so what are we to do to freshen the air?
A few years back research from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration was released proving that indoor plants could actually improve air quality in closed spaces — such as our homes. The plants do so by absorbing gases through pores on the leaves as part of the photosynthesis process. The good news is that they don’t just absorb carbon dioxide, but other harmful gases such as the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can build up in our homes, including benzene and formaldehyde.
If that sounds intriguing, here are a few indoor plants that you can easily grow that may help improve your air.
Indoor Plants for Better Air Quality
1. Garden mum. If you only grow one indoor plant, grow the garden mum. Research shows they remove benzene, formaldehyde, xylene and ammonia from the air. You can plant them outdoors when they are finished blooming.
2. Dracaena. A common foliage plant, Dracaena is available in 40 different species. The only proviso is they are toxic to pets, so if you choose one, keep it where your dog or cat can’t reach it. They remove benzene, formaldehyde, xylene and trichloroethylene.
3. Ficus. Another common indoor plant is the Ficus, which can remove formaldehyde, trichloroethylene and benzene. They can grow very tall so make sure you have the right space.
4. Snake Plant. This is a real survivor — very hard to kill, although it needs occasional watering and partial sun. It will absorb xylene, formaldehyde and benzene.
Other top performing VOC-removing plants are Bamboo Palm, Aloe Vera, Boston Fern and Peace Lily.
For more on indoor plants and other means to improve your air quality, contact CCAC — serving Corpus Christi and the Coastal Bend area.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Corpus Christi, Texas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about your HVAC system, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 361-678-2495.
Credit/Copyright Attribution: “Free-Photos/Pixabay”