Plants to improve indoor air naturally!

Coming from the country side of Belgium, I have been used to live in an environment where the air is of pretty good quality. Since living in big cities, I have been sensitive to the smell of pollution and worried about its impact on my health. Air quality is an important consideration for our health as chemicals and many other substances can easily be absorbed through the lungs.

Turns out, outdoor air quality isn’t the biggest offender. Sometimes indoor air can be even more contaminated than outdoor, given that indoor air is often more stagnant. Molds, tobacco smoke, gases such as radon and carbon monoxide, chemical based cleaners, air fresheners and detergents, contributes to a poor indoor air quality.

During the late 1980’s, NASA began studying houseplants as a means of providing cleaner air for space stations. They showed that there are many different green house plants that can help purifying the air by filtering out certain harmful volatile compounds, making it much healthier to breathe.


The good news is, some of these plants are easy to find in Manila! You can simply add them to your interior to purify the air in your home. Here is my top list of purifying and low maintenance indoor plants:

1. Guzmania bromeliad: They are extremely drought tolerant and require less maintenance than most other indoor plants. On top, they bring a colourful touch to your interior! While most common indoor plants purify the air during the day, bromeliads release oxygen and remove air pollutants during the night.

2. Money plant: Powerful plant to tackle formaldehyde (found in carpet, pressed wood products, natural gas, kerosene, and cigarette smoke), benzene (found in inks, oils, paints, plastics, and rubber) and trichloroethylene (found in ink, paint, varnish and adhesive). This fast growing green plant needs to be watered once a week and are the happiest in a hanging basket. Consider it for your garage to tackle the toxic volatile compounds from car exhaust.

3. Snake plant: It’s a really though houseplant that can survive any conditions, from dark to bright. Snake plant is one of the best for filtering out formaldehyde, which is common in cleaning products, and personal care product. Given that, it might be good to keep one in your bathroom!

4. Aloe vera: It’s a great plant to improve your air quality. It helps to keep your home free from benzene which is commonly found in paint and certain chemical cleaners. Also, the gel in the leaves is excellent to heal cuts and burns.

5. Areca Palm: It is the very best air purifying plant according to the ratings from NASA’s research and has a pretty good rate when it comes to removing formaldehyde from your outdoor.

6. Spider plant: Spider plant is easy to grow and absorbs harmful substances like mold and other allergens. It also helps to absorb traces of formaldehyde and carbon monoxide. Beware Spider plant is poisonous to pets!

Overall cleaner air means reduced incidence of eye irritation, respiratory system, headache, lung impediment and asthma. More oxygen in blood is also associated with higher human productivity. So get these little beauties in and enjoy clean and pure indoor air!


Hi, I am Ady! Wife to my filipino love and mum to my eurasian baby bear. Loving the outdoor, travelling and everything natural & healthy!

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