Cleaning our air is accomplished by every plant in the garden and home. Plants clean the air we breathe by taking in carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen, they increase humidity by transpiring water vapor through microscopic leaf pores, and they absorb pollutants on leaves and in the plant root-soil system.
Through the process of photosynthesis, plant leaves absorb chemicals, bacteria, or harmful elements floating on the breeze, which they then filter into useful waste products like water and oxygen – “waste” products that we humans thrive upon. That benefits us because we take in oxygen and expel carbon dioxide. So we’re a perfect match: When we talk to our plants, we expel the carbon dioxide that they need, and in return, they absorb our carbon dioxide and expel the oxygen that we need. Our respiration provides what they need, and their respiration provides what we need.
Some of the best plants for cleaner air according to some studies and other sources include:
Which is the best single plant?
Chrysanthemum, especially in bloom.
How many plants in a room?
Two “good sized” plants in a room of 100 square feet. But a whole nursery-full would be even more enjoyable!
Plant roots also help to take in any errant chemicals or heavy metals that might be lurking in your soil. This process is called phytoremediation. The roots then “lock up” those toxins, and the plants can then be burned. The resulting ash is light, small, and easy to store. Some effective plants include alfalfa, corn, Date palms, mustard greens, sunflowers, poplar and willow trees, and water ferns and water hyacinths.