5 Air-purifying Plants That Encourage You to Breathe Deeply

Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 08:25 pm

The capabilities of the plant world never cease to amaze us. The metabolic processes of our indoor plants also benefit us: they produce oxygen, increase humidity and thus make our environment more liveable. Some can even filter pollutants from the air. However, this effect turns out to be rather small under everyday conditions, as has been found. Nevertheless, this special property fascinates us, which is why we would like to introduce you to five air-purifying plants.

the green lily (Chlorophytum comosum)

The green lily belongs to the asparagus family (Asparagaceae). It is not only an air-purifying plant, but also frugal and thus uncomplicated to care for. You don’t have a green thumb, but still want to improve the air quality in your home? Then a green lily could be the perfect choice for you.

5 Air-purifying Plants That Encourage You to Breathe Deeply

The green lily especially loves a sunny spot. But it will do well in almost any location indoors. Its long, striped leaves hang down from the windowsill or from a hanging basket. When it feels at home, it sprouts long flower stalks, at the ends of which small rooted offshoots form. Green lilies like a fresh to moist substrate. The top layer of soil may dry out a little between watering. If it is potted once a year in fresh substrate, there is no need for additional fertiliser.

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The Dragon Tree (Dracaena)

Both the marginal dragon tree (Dracaena marginata) and the fragrant dragon tree (D. fragrans) are air-purifying plants. However, the former is ahead of the latter because it can filter a few more harmful chemicals than its close relative.

Dragon trees have long, shiny leaves and the variegated varieties in particular bring an additional interesting play of colours. The small indoor trees prefer a warm location – preferably all year round. Temperatures should not fall below 15 degrees Celsius. Use a nutrient-rich but well-drained substrate and keep the root ball moist at all times. Do not use water with a high lime content, as the ideal pH value of the soil for a dragon tree is in the acidic range.

The Garden Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum morifolium)

A surprise candidate on the list of air-purifying plants is undoubtedly the garden chrysanthemum. On the one hand, many people have probably only known it as a balcony plant or cut flower, but it is also a fabulous houseplant. On the other hand, it turns out to be a real all-rounder when it comes to getting rid of sheep matter. The garden chrysanthemum can filter benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethene, xylenes, toluene and ammonia from the air. This range is amazing – although you would probably still need a lot of garden chrysanthemums for the air to improve measurably.

The chrysanthemum needs a bright location and regular watering. Liquid fertiliser is added to the water every two weeks. In this way, the plant can not only fulfil its task as an air freshener, but is also well equipped to beguile with a lush flowering floral from August onwards.

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the monocot (Spathiphyllum)

The monocot, also known as the peace lily, is extremely elegant to look at with its large leaves and shapely white flowers. And this beauty also improves the air. When it comes to filtering pollutants, Spathiphyllum ‘Mauna Loa’ is particularly ahead.

The monocot is robust, but needs a lot of water and high humidity. It would therefore do well in the bathroom. If there is a lack of water, the tropical plant quickly becomes noticeable with drooping leaves. It needs a bright location, but preferably without direct sunlight. Provide the monocot with sufficient nutrients by applying liquid fertiliser every few weeks.

the arching hemp (Sansevieria trifasciata)

The bow hemp is a classic among the low-maintenance houseplants and already embellished grandmother’s living room back in the 70s. It is less well known that the succulent is also an air-purifying plant. Another advantage is that the arching hemp also produces oxygen at night, which is why it makes an ideal bedroom plant.

With its firm, almost leathery leaves, the bow hemp can store large amounts of water. No wonder, then, that it is one of the most drought-tolerant houseplants. It likes it bright, but is indestructible and even thrives in shady rooms. Its only problem is waterlogging. Therefore, pot it in a well-drained substrate.


  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts.

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