Do House Plants Actually Purify Indoor Air?
A popular benefit touted by plant enthusiasts is that indoor plants are able to help purify the air inside our homes. However, more recent studies have shown that this perk might actually be a myth. But that doesn’t mean we should toss out all our greenery. Indoor plants have numerous other benefits that are just as important as clean air!
Photo by Chewy
Can Indoor Plants Purify Air?
While plants may technically have the capacity to purify air, scientists have recently disproved the notion that houseplants can sufficiently clean the air in our homes. An indoor environment would need an extremely large amount of greenery to battle air contamination.
How Many Plants Do You Need for Clean Air Indoors?
To give you an idea, it would take roughly 1,000 plants in a 10 foot by 10 foot space to rival the air filtration that a typical HVAC system can offer. As you can imagine, this leaves little room for moving around, let alone living a normal life!
In addition to combating outdoor pollutants that seep indoors, experts note that there are other surfaces (and people) that contribute to “dirty” air. Given the amount of potential air pollutants, most plants simply aren’t large enough to purify an entire space. This is also why forests are so important–these are areas where foliage can maximize their potential as they cover the ground freely, climb one another to expand, and grow as tall as possible.
What Are the Other Benefits of Indoor Plants?
Though houseplants may not be able to single-handedly clean the air in your abode, they offer a slew of other benefits that are worth noting. Some of the perks that come with houseplants are:
- Humidity: One thing houseplants can change in your home’s air is the level of humidity. People who struggle with health issues related to dry air might find that stocking up on house plants provides some much needed relief.
- Mental health: Houseplants can greatly benefit mental health by offering a day-to-day connection to the natural world. Urban dwellers especially may crave access to greenery, and indoor plants offer a convenient solution. Whether it’s a fresh-cut bouquet or a unique succulent, adding some extra green to your environment can do wonders for brightening up your home.
- Fresh ingredients: For culinary aficionados and novices alike, an indoor herb garden can be a useful resource. Turn a simple dish into an herbaceous meal with just a couple of snips. In addition to the convenience, herbs can have medicinal uses as well as fresh scents to elevate your homelife.
While plants may not be able to magically clean the air inside our homes as once purported, it’s no reason to throw them aside. If having plants inside our homes helps us feel better and live better, that’s enough reason to keep them around!
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