Plants: Your Secret Weapon Against Indoor Fumes

It is an interesting fact that around 90% of our time is spent indoors, and yet the air quality in our homes and offices can be as much as 2-5 times worse than outdoors.

Unexpected sources of air pollution include:

• Dust and other airborne particles that drift in from outdoors
• Chemicals hiding in everyday cleaning and air freshening products
• Fumes from cooking and smoking
• Carbon dioxide from log fires, cooking, exhaling
• Even new furniture, synthetic fibres paint and carpets can give off toxic gases like formaldehyde which are poisonous in large quantities

However, rather than panic or throw open all the windows (which can make it hard to regulate temperature), we can instead deploy nature’s secret weapon: houseplants.

Not only do many of them effectively remove noxious chemicals like ammonia, trichloroethylene and benzene from the air, but they also create a soothing presence, which helps to relieve stress.

Thanks to processes like photosynthesis, they are also naturally designed to take in carbon dioxide and convert it into oxygen. Some, like spider plants, have the added bonus of being non-toxic to children and pets.

What’s your favourite houseplant?