Are Succulents Good for Your Air Quality?
Succulents are a great addition to any household. They are not only aesthetically pleasing, but they are also good for your air quality! Let’s explore the benefits of succulents and what you should look for when choosing them in order to keep your house clean and fresh.
How to Remove Harmful Toxins with Succulents
Now succulents are a popular group of house plants but they also come with some unexpected benefits – they can help remove harmful toxins from the air and improve air quality.
We’re not suggesting that you throw out all of your household cleaning goods, though! And you can still buy those organic cleaning supplies you prefer. But consider that plants are the ideal natural solution for poor indoor air quality, and NASA thinks so too!
In the late 1980s, NASA constructed a full-functioning dwelling called the BioHome that could meet the demands of one person. It had a garden, water purification technology, and waste management equipment. To make this home energy efficient and inexpensive to produce, NASA made it airtight and utilized manufactured materials to construct it.
However, the building proved to be a health hazard. The substance that made the structure fireproof was highly flammable and did not smell good. A lot of people complained of breathing difficulties after entering the facility. This occurred because of the synthetic materials used in its construction, which released volatile organic compounds into the air.
They had a solution in mind: plants. In the past, they’d studied volatile organic compounds and knew that plants could absorb them. When they added houseplants like the Snake Plant to their BioHome, monitoring showed that most of the pollutants were gone. Nobody reported having those awful symptoms anymore, which was the best part!
If a building that caused awful symptoms like stinging eyes and respiratory difficulties could be fixed by adding house plants, then your home can surely be made safe by adding some air purifying plants!
Five ways succulents can help you live healthier
Before we dive into some examples, it is worth taking a moment to appreciate how useful succulents are for more than just air purification.
They help you breathe
Succulents, and a few other plants such as orchids and areca palms, continue to generate oxygen throughout the night during photosynthesis. Succulents and a few other plants, like asparagus ferns, keep generating oxygen 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This helps you breathe by making sure the air is clearer and fresher.
They help prevent diseases
Plants release around 10% of the moisture in the air. The same may be said for your house; the more plants you have, especially in groups, the higher the humidity level in your home can be to prevent dry skin, colds, sore throat, and dry cough. According to a study by the Agricultural University of Norway, offices with plants had a 60% better sickness rate than those without them.
They help you focus
Plants in the room have been shown to improve attention, concentration, and brain functions in both students and employees. Plants have been found to boost memory retention by up to 20% when present. Succulents are especially useful at work because they don’t take up much space on your desk.
They aid in quicker recovery
Succulents might help to relieve flu-like symptoms, headaches, fever, and coughs. According to Kansas State University researchers, hospital patients with plants in their rooms needed less pain medication, had lower blood pressure and heart rate and felt less fatigue and anxiety.
Best Air Purifying Succulent Plants
1. Aloe Vera
Because it eliminates formaldehyde, which many house items emit, aloe vera is one of the best at cleaning the air. According to a study conducted by the US National Library of Medicine, plants, in general, were able to remove some pollutants and hazardous gases from the atmosphere, including carbon monoxide and ozone molecules. Formaldehyde was particularly easy for Aloe.
2. Jade Plant
Jade plant is also an excellent choice for improving the air quality in your home. On contact with its natural scent, it will deodorize any space. The Jade plant is recognized as one of the seven luckiest plants in Chinese culture, and wherever they’re planted, it brings good fortune! The shapely leaves are jade-green and glossy.
3. Peace Lily
One of the plants that increase the air quality in your home is Peace Lily. This plant cleanses the air of formaldehyde, benzene, and trichloroethylene. It also removes scents like cigarette smoke or skunk spray right away!
4. String of Pearls
The String of Pearls is a popular houseplant. Its scientific name is Dracaena marginata and it belongs to the Asparagaceae (Liliaceae) or Liliaceae family.
5. Christmas Cactus
One of the plants that promote air quality in your home is Christmas Cactus. The Christmas cactus is a succulent with thick leaves. It belongs to the genus Schlumbergera and the family Cactaceae, and its scientific name is Schlumbergera x buckleyi.
6. Dwarf Baby Tears
Another succulent that purifies the air in your house is Dwarf Baby Tears. The scientific name of the Dwarf baby tears is Pilea peperomioides, and it belongs to the family Urticaceae (or Nolinaceae).
7. Snake Plant (or “Mother-in-Law’s Tongue”)
Another succulent, the Snake Plant (“Mother-in-Law’s Tongue”), cleans the air. Its scientific name is Sansevieria trifasciata and it comes from the Liliaceae family (the same as Easter cactus).
The snake plant removes formaldehyde, benzene, and xylene from the air. In a low-CO environment with concentrations of 15ppb to 30ppb (parts per billion), NASA studied the snake plant’s effectiveness at removing formaldehyde, benzene, and xylene from the air. These three pollutants are generated by gasoline exhausts, industrial pollution, and even cigarette smoke.
8. Mother of Thousands (also called the “Devil’s Ivy” or the “Creeping Charlie”)
The Mother of Thousands (also known as the “Devil’s Ivy” or the “Creeping Charlie”) is a succulent that purifies the air. It comes from the family Crassulaceae and has been observed in Australia, South Africa, Europe, India, and North America.