A 1987 NASA study lead by Dr. Roy Wolverton was looking into ways to purify the air in control rooms, offices as well as in their shuttles and capsules while in space. Plants came out as the most effective and natural ways to accomplish this at low cost and without taking up extra space or precious power. Different species varied in their uptake of different chemicals, but plants were found to be, as a whole, very effective in removing toxic VOCs.
Via this study it was found that just two Boston Ferns can clean formaldehyde fumes from 100 square feet of closed space. Other plants that work well are Peace Lilly, Azalea, Poinsettia, Dieffenbachia (dumbcane), Bamboo Palm, Mother-in-law’s Tongue, Gerbera Daisy and Chinese Evergreen. The study estimated that fifteen average sized Mother’s-in-law Tongue (Sansevieria laurentii) or six large Bamboo Palms (Chamaedorea seifritzii) would maintain Formaldehyde free air in a 1,800sq ft space.
Today, pollutants such as benzene and toxic metals from cigarette smoke, fumes from computers and other devices, cleaning compounds, paints and formaldehyde from carpeting, drapes and particle board in furniture are creating a condition called “sick building syndrome”. These toxins contribute to the ongoing stress our body is confronted with every day. The body has to use a considerable amount of energy to deal with these pollutants on a daily basis by either storing them or attempting to eliminate them via the skin or liver. Unfortunately in most of us today, these two organs of elimination are functioning far below their ideal capacity. This ongoing stress and energy drain can contribute to the worsening of existing physical, emotional and mental symptoms. Removing these toxins from our environment, office, home, is an important step to living a healthier and more balanced life.
For the complete list of plants and their benefits you can pick up Dr. Wolverton’s book entitled: How To Grow Fresh Air: 50 Houseplants That Purify Your Home Or Office
For detailed information on how to care for these and many other plants we recommend visiting OurHousePlants.com