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How to Grow Oxygen

house plantPlants are beneficial. They create fresh and clean air, balance internal humidity, inspire creativity, and provide a soothing environment. It is easy to create an indoor green haven inside your office and home by keeping a few common plants around your space.

What Plants Can Do

Remove Pollution

NASA research proves common house plants are effective in removing indoor air pollution. All plants clean the air by absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen through a process called photosynthesis. This process filters the air we breathe by absorbing harmful pollutants such as carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, volatile organic compounds (benzene, trichloroethylene), radon, and pesticides. Certain plants were found to remove as much as 87 percent of indoor air pollutants within a single day.*

Improve Health

Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) is a combination of ailments ranging from allergies, headaches, soreness, fatigue and cancer caused by breathing poor quality air, which is typically caused by the buildup of moisture, mold growth, and toxins emitted from furniture, building materials, and cleaners. Many plants absorb these harmful pollutants through their roots and leaves and process them into food. They then emit a fresh source of oxygen so we can breathe in cleaner air – ensuring we feel refreshed and energized.

Connect Us to the Outside World

Plants make us feel more connected to the natural world when modern life requires our presence indoors. Recall that plants absorb carbon dioxide (CO2) and release oxygen (O2), and humans do the opposite; breathe oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide. This symbiotic relationship between flora and fauna demonstrates the significance and connectivity between all forms of life.

Grow clean air

Outdoor Herbivore recommends these 5 EASY TO GROW plants:

spider plant

Plant Name: Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
Eliminates: Formaldehyde
Description: Requires minimal maintenance.Once mature, the plant will grow hanging roots from the stems which can be pulled off and rooted in a glass of water. Once a root system develops (about 2 weeks) transplant the saplings into potting soil.

Locate in a sunny location.  Water once a week – or less. Plants can go up to 3 weeks without water in which the leaves will begin to wilt from distress. Just provide a good soaking, and the leaves will perk right back up.

english ivy Plant Name: English Ivy (Hedera helix)
Eliminates: Benzene, Formaldehyde, Xylene and Toluene
Description: This is a trailing plant that grows in abundance here in North Carolina and is considered a nuisance since it chokes out other plants if not pruned. Nonetheless, it is a great ornamental indoor plant since it is hardy, requires little watering, grows quickly, and can be pruned to display in a variety of ways.

Locate in a shady location with little indirect sunlight.

Snake Plant or "Mother-in-Law's tongue
Image courtesy mnemo Wikipedia
Plant Name: Snake Plant or Mother-in-Law’s Tongue (Sansevieria trifasciata ‘Laurentii’)
Eliminates: Formaldehyde
Description: The stiff sword-like leaves grow upright up to 4 feet tall.
This is a hardy plant making it an excellent choice for a novice. Requires little sunlight. Keep soil dry. Water every 3 – 4 weeks.

Peace Lily
Image  courtesy UshaJ Wikipedia
Plant Name: Peace lily (Spathiphyllum’Mauna Loa’)
Eliminates: Benzene, Formaldehyde, and Trichloroethylene
Description: Elongated green leaves with white blooms.

Locate in an area with little direct sunlight. Water often or grow directly in a jar of water. Like the spider plant, the leaves will droop when it requires water.

Rubber Plant
Image courtesy KENPEI Wikipedia
Plant Name: Rubber Plant (Ficus elastica)
Eliminates: Formaldehyde
Description: A fast growing plant with oblong, glossy shaped leaves. Keep leaves shiny by wiping off dust with a moistened cloth.

Locate in moderate to low light. Water weekly.

And…don’t forget to open the windows every so often to allow a fresh breeze to stir up the stale indoor air!

Sources and Additional Information:

Colorado State



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