National Indoor Plant Week | Air Purifying Plants

From cleaning the air to reducing stress and anxiety, improving productivity or creativity and simply giving us rootedness, we celebrate all the ways air purifying plants serve our well-being.

We know that being outside in nature makes us feel good, but did you know that bringing plants into our home and workplace environments can make us healthier and happier?

The Problem: Indoor Air Pollutants

Since the beginning of time, humans have depended upon a relationship with plants for our survival. Our lifestyle today has us spending less and less time outdoors. In fact, EPA studies show we spend about 90% of our time indoors, where concentrations of pollutants can be 2 -5 times higher than outdoors.

While our homes and buildings may be more energy efficient than they used to be, the EPA also finds most buildings lack adequate ventilation to properly filter for true indoor air quality. You might be surprised to learn that the places where we spend so much of our time are full of common things that produce harmful toxins.

Indoor air pollutants come from a long list of everyday culprits such as, building materials, HVAC sources, office equipment, glues, inks, cleaning and personal care products, furniture, and flooring to name a few. The chemicals from synthetic materials in the production or use of these items emit harmful toxins that can remain trapped in our tightly sealed homes and workspaces for us to ingest as we simply breathe.

The Solution: Naturally Air Purifying Plants

In 1989, when NASA researchers set out to find the best ways to clean the air in space stations, they took these factors into consideration. They determined, “The answer to these problems is obvious. If man is to move into closed environments, on Earth or in space, he must take along nature’s life support system.

The results of the NASA Interior Landscape Plants for Indoor Air Pollution Abatement identified several air purifying plants that naturally remove toxic agents such as benzene, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene – chemicals from indoor air pollutants that have been linked to health effects. The research recommends having at least one the air purifying plants per 100 square feet of home or office space, to improve indoor air quality.

Plant Something Healthy

Studley Flower Gardens is a proud sponsor of Plant Something NH, a program of the NH Plant Grower’s Association dedicated to educating the public about the health, environmental and economic benefits of plants. With a little help from our Plant Something NH friends, we share these NASA recommended air purifying plant options

Plants Make People Happy

While the NASA study focuses on air purification, many other studies have shown that the effect of nature in our home and work space serves to stimulate our well-being in many other ways. If Instagram trends are any indication, plants simply make people happy and you should know there are many good reasons to bring plants indoors other than to make your home look like a jungle!


Plants have always been a means of cost-effective décor and they never go out of style, but for many, they represent roots where permanence is not yet possible, landscape where a garden is not possible, and the most heart-warming of all – a family of sorts, to care for and come home to. No matter what the science says about talking to your plants, we like to think they enjoy it!

The internet is filled with data on how nature and plants contribute to improved: physical and mental health, anxiety, community cohesion, compassion for one another, concentration, creativity, energy, healing, happiness, learning comprehension, memory, performance, relationships, and stress. In fact, plants make people so happy it is difficult to think of a reason why we would not all surround ourselves with plants, but they may not always make pets happy. With pet safety in mind, check out our picks for the Top Pet-Friendly Plants.

Simply introducing something from nature into your life might improve your circumstances. Discover more research sources and learn more about The Health and Well Being Benefits of Plants from the Ellison Chair in International Floriculture or check out Forest Bathing, a book by Dr. Qing Li, at your local library and see our article on How To Grow & Enrich Community.

My Pro Tip:

Create your own sanctuary, a natural and soothing place of refuge from the stresses of everyday life. Introduce several plants to every room in your home and work spaces, then note how your mood improves when in their presence. Using a combination of plants in varying heights, textures and habits, it’s easy to turn living areas into an oasis of good health and happiness.

Many people worry about properly caring for plants and the secret is in choosing plants that are well potted and appropriate for your lighting, space and lifestyle needs. Prayer Plant is just one of many options for new growers that we recommend and you’ll find Jen Reviews has a comprehensive prayer plant care guide available online. Visit us and let our pros offer more suggestions to help you make the right selections for your environment, choose your containers and even pot your plants. We’re here to help you find joy in plant parenthood – nurturing and watching your plants grow!

See you at Studley’s!

written by Jeffrey Meulenbroek

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