Research shows how effectively houseplants remove multiple toxins, known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), that contribute to the buildup of indoor air pollution.
According to Vadoud Niri, Ph.D., leader of the study, “Buildings, whether new or old, can have high levels of VOCs in them, sometimes so high that you can smell them.”
“Inhaling large amounts of VOCs can lead some people to develop sick building syndrome, which reduces productivity and can even cause dizziness, asthma or allergies,” he says. “We must do something about VOCs in indoor air.”
The study found that with the right plant, indoor air becomes cleaner and safer. Common houseplants such as bromeliads, dracaenas, and spider plants efficiently absorb the harmful compounds frequently found in homes and offices, produced by such products as cleaning supplies, paint, furniture glue, and nail polish remover.
To bring attention to the new research and many health benefits of indoor plants, Costa Farms celebrates National Indoor Plant Week the third week of September. Since its launch in 2008, Costa Farms’ 'O2 for You: Houseplants with a Purpose' campaign has raised awareness of how houseplants scrub the air clean in homes and offices.
“Houseplants work constantly to clean our air,” Justin Hancock, garden expert at Costa Farms says. “They can also help lower blood pressure, reduce stress and increase our ability to concentrate, making them invaluable for every home and office.”
It's easy to identify air purifying plants known to remove VOCs: Just look for the 'O2 for You' plant tag at local retailers or visit http://www.o2foryou.org. For more information on National Indoor Plant Week visit http://www.nationalindoorplantweek.com.