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Being a plant parent is more than just a hobby that makes stark spaces feel homier. If you adopt the right plants, you could actually have cleaner air.
How Do Plants Help Clean the Air?
Plants improve air quality in a few different ways. For starters, they absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen through photosynthesis. They also increase humidity and passively absorb pollutants. While this is true of all plants, some are especially good at keeping the air healthy and fresh, like aloe vera and rubber tree plants (more on them below).
Of course, having a couple of houseplants around won’t drastically change the air quality in your room (versus say, being surrounded by trees or greenery on your property). Still, these air purifying plants will have some effect, while also helping to promote calmness and relaxation and adding to the overall ambience in your space.
Keep in mind that plants can help clean the air but they can’t eliminate viruses from the air like an air purifier can. If you’re concerned about your health or looking for a heavy-duty way to clean the air in your space, you’ll want to pick up a true air purifier rather than just a couple of houseplants.
Buying Air Purifying Plants Online
These days, you don’t have to go to a nursery or even to a plant shop to buy air purifying plants. You can find some of the best air purifying plants online, with dozens of picks that are easy to ship — and easy to care for.
When you’re shopping for the best air purifying plants, the most important thing to keep in mind is how easy or difficult it is to care for your plant. Some plants, like orchids and gardenias, are notoriously difficult to keep alive indoors. Unless you have two green thumbs, you may not want to select plants that are so difficult. Instead, you’ll want plants that are resilient and non-fussy in their care requirements, like spider plants and anthuriums.
We’ve rounded up four of the best air purifying plants that strike a harmonious balance between being beneficial to your air quality and being easy to keep alive.
1. Burgundy Rubber Tree Plant
NASA (yes, that NASA) recommends rubber tree plants as one of the best plants out there for those who are trying to clean the air. Luckily, they’re super easy to care for, too. Rubber tree plants can grow well even with low levels of light. Plus, they are natural humidifiers. In addition to being practical, their leaves have deep hues that add aesthetic value to any room.
Rubber tree plants get their name from the rubbery texture of the leaves, as well as from the latex liquid produced by the plant, which is a natural source of rubber.
This plant comes pre-potted in a handsome wicker-style pot, and is packaged and ready to ship fresh.
2. Red Anthurium Flamingo Flower
If you want to add some color to your space, consider picking up an anthurium flamingo flower. So named due to the bright pink color of its blooms, the flamingo flower is also one of the best air purifying plants you can find online, thanks to its leafy greens that surround the flower petals.
These plants have beautiful, bright heart-shaped flowers and are super resilient. They do not need direct sunlight to prosper and only need to be watered once or twice a week.
3. Costa Farms Aloe Vera Plant
Aloe vera is a widely-loved healing plant. Most people know it for its ability to soothe burns, but it also purifies the air from pollutants like benzene and formaldehyde, which can be found in household cleaning products.
You only need to water your aloe plant once every two weeks, too and that’s about all the “care” it needs. The rest of the time: just stick it on a sunny windowsill and enjoy the benefits of this plant.
We like that this aloe vera plant comes in a decorative pot, which looks great on a desk, side table or shelf.
4. Reverse Variegated Spider Plant
Even if you’ve had bad luck with plants in the past, you should be able to keep a Spider Plant alive and well. Spider plants are considered one of the easiest plants to grow — and boy will they grow.
The draping look of the slender leaves are great for placing spider plants in hanging pots or letting them grow over a ledge or window sill. They’re meant to grow freely too, so you won’t need to do any trimming or pruning.
Plus, they purify the air from carbon monoxide, ammonia, formaldehyde, and other toxins that might be lingering in your air.