As winter really kicks in our radiators are on full blast to combat freezing indoor temperatures. But concentrated heat can activate paint finishes and furniture vanishes to emit trace toxins. Counteracting this can be as simple as choosing the right house plants. If you've ever had the decorators in and been left with strong smells of turpentine or thinners you may find they are very hard to shift just with cleaning. But some houseplants, such as the weeping fig, are very effective at absorbing substances like this. Just a few hours can make a big difference. For a deep detox exercise, recommended as part of your spring clean, get several.
Research conducted by NASA shows the Peace Lily is among the best indoor plants for purifying air. A tropical native, it breaks down and neutralizes toxic gases like benzene, formaldehyde and carbon monoxide. Of course you are unlikely to have more than traces of these in the air where you live, but even traces are inadvisable..
Peace Lilies also reduce the level of mould spores in homes. It absorbs the spores through its leaves and transfers them to its roots where they are digested. In bathrooms the Peace Lily can help keep shower tiles and curtains free from mildew. The plant can also absorb potentially harmful vapours from alcohol and acetone.
Peace Lilies are amazingly tolerant and easy to grow. You can leave them for two weeks before watering, and they will revive quickly even if you don't get to them before the leaves start to wilt.
The top plants approved by NASA for air cleaning qualities are:
1.Spathiphyllum (peace lily)
2. Ficus benjamina (weeping fig)
3. Dracaena reflexa (red-edged Dracaena)
4. Header Helix (English ivy)
5.Sansevieria trifrasciata (snake plant)
All these plants are unfortunately poisonous to ingest, so you should keep pets away from them.