Air purifying indoor plants – part 2 of 2

Here is the second part of our article related to air purifying indoor plants.

You’ll find a list below of the most common and easy-to-grow plants that yield maximum possible results.

To read what was in the first part, click here.

What does each indoor plant filter out?


Green leaves of the ficus tree filter air pollution out..Ficus mainly absorbs formaldehyde, xylene and ammonia that is present in detergents.
It acts on cigarette smoke, deodorizers and also varnish.

This plant grows in a well-lit place and is particularly well suited to growing indoors in our houses and apartments.

Being among the most sold plants overall is also a tribute to its appealing ornamental value.


Even a few green philodendron leaves can filter air pollutants out.Philodendron mainly absorbs formaldehyde and pentachlorophenol.

These compounds appear in most materials used for furniture as well as glue, varnish and domestic cleaning products.

This is a plant that loves moisture and will also do very well in a bathroom for instance.

Caring for it is easy and you’ll be seduced by its shiny green leaves.


A small pot with ferns does wonders to clean indoor air.Fern is one of the most effective air purifying indoor plants.

Very effective thanks to its increased absorption and rejection capacity, it eliminate most products used house cleaning and upkeep.

And it also filters those present in furniture-building materials.

For use indoors, choose the Nephrolepsis exaltata.


Areca palm in a pot, cleaning indoor air from pollutants.Areca isn’t only one of the favorite indoor plants of all, if not the most commonly used, it is also among the air purifying indoor plants.

It absorbs xylene and formaldehyde very well.

These products accordingly appear in paint and varnish, as well as in most home care products.

Areca like sunny and well-exposed spots.


Calathea plant leaves, shown on the photo, purify indoor air from contaminants.Calathea does particularly well in well-lit spots that aren’t in direct sunlight.

Apart from its extremely ornamental unique and original foliage, it also purifies the surrounding air, filtering out a multitude of compounds that are more or less poisonous.

Caring for calathea is easy and requires practically no care at all, which makes its enjoyable presence all the sweeter.


A small pot of anthurium on a table removes air pollution.Anthurium has become a must-have in terms of indoor plants.

Its blooming is marvelous and can last all year round if well cared for.

On top of this, it has the advantage of absorbing many toxic substances such as ammonia.

It is thus perfect to embellish a kitchen or any other rather damp room in the house, such as a bathroom.


A dieffenbachia arrangement in a wicker basket acts as a filter for particles suspended in the air.Dieffenbachia is native to Central America and Brazil.

Care, repotting, watering and exposure are as many small things to do that will make your dieffenbachia even more lush.

It makes our houses and apartments look lively with its elevated ornamental impact.

Apart from all these advantages, dieffenbachia has the advantage of humidifying the air when it is too dry, which is very useful when air conditioning is used.


Dracaena houseplant close-up with lemon-lime leaves clean air as they breathe.Although some varieties look very similar to palm trees, dracaena isn’t a palm tree.

But the similarity is confusing and the care it needs is often very close to that of a palm tree.

Both appealing to the eye and very easy to grow, it is among the most sold and liked indoor plants.

Thanks to dracaena, you’ll be ridding your air of formaldehyde and benzene which are typically found in cigarette smoke. Two famous dracaena houseplants are Dracaena marginata and Dracaena massangeana.


Red, orange and green croton leaves purify the air indoors.Croton is native to the islands of the Pacific Ocean.

Care, repotting, watering and exposure, are items to focus your attention on that will make your croton even nicer.

It makes our houses and apartments look lively with its elevated ornamental impact and unique foliage.

And it also boasts a powerful air purifying capacity and effectively cleanses the air of formaldehyde.


Spathiphyllum flower works as a plant to filter toxins from the air.Under our climates, Spathiphyllum adapts well to living indoors in our apartments and homes.

It grows best when surrounding temperatures hold around 68 to 72°F (20 to 22°C).

Both decorative and easy to care for, spathiphyllum has the surprise capacity to eliminate toxic chemical products.

It absorbs compounds that emanate from varnish, plastics, paint and other materials used in furniture.

Lastly, here are a few more very effective air purifying indoor plants:

  • Cycas – With the bearing of a palm tree, this plant is perfect to cleanse the air of xylene and toluene that come from paints, varnish, ink and also glue, perfume and chemical deodorizers.
  • Clivia – It effectively traps chemical particles that float in the air.
  • Ivy – It absorbs toluene, trichloroethylene, formaldehyde as well as carbon monoxide.
  • Azalea – Very effective against ammonia that wafts up from house care products. Azalea japonica is well suited for indoors with its smaller, distinguished leaves.
  • Chrysanthemum – It mainly eliminates trichloroethylene that is found in solvents (happily, this compound tends to not be used anymore).
  • Chlorophytum – It greatly contributes to reducing excess carbon monoxide levels.
  • Sansevieria – Eliminates benzene.
  • Rubber tree

Two major advantages of air purifying plants

  • Purification of surrounding air
  • The joy of seeing your house embellished and full of plants!

Finally, another way to reduce pollution levels inside your house is to ventilate rooms of your house or apartment on a regular basis.

Of course, in summer windows are almost always open, but in winter opening windows for 15 minutes twice daily in each room is necessary.

This will benefit your indoor air as it will your green plants, too!

To review the first part of this article dedicated to air purifying indoor plants, click here.

Smart tip about plants that clean air from toxins

Set your air-purifying plants up as an indoor plant wall, it’ll be even more effective and will save space, too!

Credits for images shared to Nature & Garden (all edits by Gaspard Lorthiois):
Under © CC0 1.0: Ficus shared by Travel-Ing, Dieffenbachia shared by PENEBAR, Spathiphyllum shared by HK2710, Croton shared by paulbr75, Anthurium shared by galinait84
Under © CC BY-NC-SA 2.0: Palm frond shared by Daniel Foster
Under © CC BY 2.0: Lemon-lime dracaena shared by Maja Dumat
Under © CC BY-NC 2.0: Calathea shared by scott.zona
Under © CC BY-NC-ND 2.0: Philodendron shared by Olena Shmahalo
By Bloemenbureau Holland: Areca pot and fern in pot by Erik von Lokven and Elize Eveleens

  • Judith Smith wrote on 27 September 2018 at 17 h 31 min

    Thank you for this wonderful article. Good health is what we all need and the air we breathe is important. Thank you.
    kind regards
    Judy Smith

    • Gaspard Lorthiois wrote on 28 September 2018 at 12 h 10 min

      That’s very true, Judy! Our air is loaded with things our bodies haven’t had to deal with, so having plants clear it out is for sure a great help. You’re very welcome.

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