Plants Can Improve Indoor Air

I’ve talked a lot about indoor air quality, and I’m happy to report that Beijing Kids has an excellent post this week about indoor plants. They discuss a short video from the TED Conference series; this presentation discusses three common house plants and details how efficiently they can remove CO2, create oxygen, and also absorb toxins.

The video and article go into very practical details as to which plants are good for bedrooms vs living rooms, and which absorb toxins. I think indoor plants are a great idea for everyone, even those of you with big air purifiers. And this certainly isn’t the first research to show how indoor plants can help absorb toxins and purify your air. As far as health tips go, this one’s a no-brainer! And given the severe air pollution in Beijing, we should do everything we can to fight these toxins, and indoor air purifiers along with plants are a great combo.

The picture below shows the three plants. All are easy to find in Beijing; the Beijing Kids article nicely includes the Chinese characters and pinyin:

Areca Palm (风尾竹, feng(4)wei(3)zhu(2), about RMB 180 each) –  Efficiently converts CO2 to oxygen. Meattle recommends four shoulder-high plants per person.

Mother-in-Law Tongue (虎皮兰, hu(3)pi(2)lan(2), about RMB 50 each) – Efficiently converts CO2 to oxygen at night and is best placed in the bedrooms. Meattle recommends 6-8 waist-high plants per person.

Money Plant (绿萝, lv(4)luo(2), about RMB 150 each) – Removes formaldehydes and other volatile chemicals. Meattle suggest one to two shoulder-high plants per person.


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