with a new house in the works and a baby on the way, i've been doing everything i can to make sure our new place will be green and healthy. one of my most biggest concerns has been to reduce the level of toxins in the new home, especially since we're planning on doing a few renovations (a big no-no when you're pregnant, apparently!). if we could afford it, we would just install the greenest materials known to man. you know, like 100% wool carpet, pure bamboo floors with no adhesives and locally crafted cabinets. since that's not possible for us though, i've looked into some other things we can do to make sure our space remains healthy. we're planning on installing the most eco-friendly wares we can afford, and then supplement those with organic products, healthy alternatives and air filtering plants.
i've known for a long time that plants can filter our air, but it wasn't until recently that i discovered just how much. according to this study by NASA, the top ten air filtering plants (above) remove 90% of formaldehyde, benzene and trichloroethylene within 24 hours. 24 hours!
another study shows that one 6" houseplant per 100 square feet of living area will be sufficient at filtering out the pollutants. and, the more vigorous the plant, the more air it can filter. so keep those plants pruned and watered! the plants filter the air by breaking down indoor pollutants and absorbing the chemicals through their leaves. the bacteria associated with the roots help break down contaminants which are then taken up as nutrients. so amazing, right?!
i was so excited when i learned this! usually our homes are the most toxic areas since they are usually kept closed up. with so many VOCs floating around, the air inside our homes is usually much more toxic than the air outside. since it's the place where we spend the majority of our time, i want to do everything i can to make sure our space is as healthy as possible.
i've got some really neat plans on how to incorporate many of these air filtering plants into our new home, so stay tuned! i can't wait to share them with you. :)