Sunday, August 24, 2008

Houseplants are humidifiers and toxic removers

Green and clean

Houseplants are humidifiers and toxic removers


Plants and trees help reducing air and noise pollution. The green area in your home can help you maintain good health, as well as allow you to enjoy your little paradise with less hassles from the outside dust and unwanted cacophony.

Researchers have found that the children living in a residential area with more trees are less likely to develop asthma than those living in concrete spaces. The ratio of children with asthma in the area with most trees is at least 25 per cent lower than the rates in other areas. In addition, the child asthma rate is found to be negatively correlated with the numbers of trees in the neighbourhood.

Although plants do not directly prevent asthma, they help reducing tiny particles in the air and improve the air quality, which, in turn, have a positive effect on human respiratory system, according to the study.

Asides from their ability to add oxygen and purify the air, trees also provide shades and reduce the temperature of the house which could save you some costs of air conditioners.

But there is yet another less known benefit of having trees and plants in the residential area. A wide variety of plants, ranging from ferns to flowers, can "cleanse" the air of harmful substances. The following are some examples of such plants:

- Yellow palm, a decorative plant, is among plants with the highest capacity of toxic absorption.

- Wadsana (Dracaena fragrans), one of the most popular plants for home and office, is also one of the most effective plants to absorb formaldehyde from the indoor ventilation system.

- Red emerald philodendron is the most effective in air cleansing of all the philodendron plants, most of which can absorb the toxic substance only moderately.

- Saonoi prapang or tropic snow dieffenbachia, a ubiquitous houseplant in Thailand, can also effectively cleanse the indoor air through its trademark variegated large leaves.

- Indian rubber plant (Ficus elastica), also another common plant in Thailand, has an ability to absorb harmful substances and cleanse the air.

- Boston fern acts as both humidifier and air cleanser with an ability to absorb a large amount of formaldehyde.

- Setthi ruannai or spider plant is a perfect decorative bedroom plant that can act as toxic remover.

- Cactus, the well-known desert plant that is admired by many, can be placed on the office desk near the computer, as it is known to absorb electromagnetic waves that could cause exhaustion to humans.

- Deli (Spathiphyllum Cannifolium), a plant with white flowers that is closely related to the more well-known anthurium plants, has an ability to absorb a large amount of toxins, especially alcohol, acetone, trichloride ethylene, benzene, and formaldehyde.

- Gerbera or Transvaal daisy does not only produce gorgeous flowers but is also capable of absorbing a large amount of toxins and humidifying the room, although it is not a common choice for indoor decoration.

- Waew mayura or wishbone flower can act as a room humidifier, although its toxin absorption ability is inferior to the other plants.

With such a long list of houseplants that can absorb toxins and produce humidity, you might want to start examining the plants around you. The ubiquitous little houseplant that you always overlook can be beneficial in a way that you never imagined.

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