Indoor Plants that Clean the Air and Remove Toxins

Plants are more than just an aesthetical adornment for the home, they also provide us with a healthy breath of fresh air. In fact, NASA conducted a Clean Air Study and concluded that certain indoor plants naturally remove toxic agents, helping neutralise the air. Indoor air pollutants range from things like cigarette smoke to the harmful chemicals found in cleaning products and air fresheners. Such plants work to absorb air pollutants like carbon dioxide and in turn release oxygen. So, if you’re looking to brighten up your home or clean the air and remove toxins, these plants are for you. Here’s a list of some incredible air purifying plants with some basic care guidance.

Monstera Deliciosa

Monstera Deliciosa
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These plants are trending due to their large-leaved beauty and, fortunately, Monstera Deliciosas are really easy to look after. The Monstera Deliciosa requires bright to medium indirect light and only needs watering about once a week, perhaps twice in a hot climate. Wait until the soil is fairly dry until watering it again. Native to Mexico and Central America, it loves humidity. If you have pets, it’s best kept out of reach.

Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera plant
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In addition to its healing properties, Aloe Vera also works its magic by purifying the air around us. As a succulent plant, it thrives in bright locations. Water an aloe plant by thoroughly drench the soil and then allowing the water to drain freely. Do this by ensuring the pot has plenty of drainage holes or, if not, remove the plant from the pot before watering. Always ensure that the soil of the plant is completely dry before rewatering. Aloe Vera is considered a medicinal plant as it can be used to heal wounds and skin conditions, though it’s toxic to pets. Even if you don’t use it for its healing properties, reap its air-purification benefits!

Pothos

Pothos
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This green beauty is perfect for shelves because, though it starts out small, its trailing vines can grow up to 10 feet long. Pothos thrives with medium to bright indirect light, although it can impressively withstand low-light conditions. This plant requires erratic watering care and it’s important to let its soil dry out between waterings. Pothos is not pet friendly.

Peace Lily

Peace Lily
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Peace Lilies are indoor-friendly plants that produce a beautiful white flower. Peace Lilies enjoy medium to low light. Avoid overwatering these plants because it’s often the most common reason for it to die. Instead, check the soil a couple of times a week. If it’s dry it needs watering, if it’s damp it doesn’t. The leaves will actually droop when it needs watering so watch out for that too. These plants are not pet friendly so keep them out of reach of any four-legged friends.

Snake Plant

Sanseviera/Snake Plant
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This exotic plant, also known as Sanseviera, is a great household addition due to the low-maintenance care it requires. This flame-like plant has air-purifying properties, and is even used as a charm against evil in its native land Africa, and in Latin America too. It grows bolt upright making it the perfect home deco. The Snake Plant prefers bright light, though it can tolerate lower light levels too. This easy-to-care-for plant is perfect for beginners as it normally needs watering every 7 to 14 days. This could even be longer in the winter months, always allow the soil to dry thoroughly between watering. It does wonders for filtering out harmful chemicals and purifying the air, though it’s not pet friendly.

These air purifying plants are not only beautiful additions to any home, they also filter our homes of those nasty air pollutants. These houseplants plants, among many others, clean the air, remove toxins and also offer an abundance of benefits that can be found here. What’s your favourite air purifying plant?

Green Living: 10 Tips for Simple Sustainability at Home

Sustainable living is governed by a lifestyle that aims to reduce a person’s environmental impact. When broken down into small steps, we have the power to make changes in many aspects of our day-to-day life. Though the journey to consuming mindfully and sustainable living may not happen overnight, by making some of these simple changes you can start reducing your environmental impact today. To make sustainable living more accessible, here are 10 simple tips to help you live greener.

Kettle Care

Any tea or coffee lovers out there? This one’s for you. By simply measuring out the water before boiling, whether that be in the mug itself or with the markings on the kettle, you will save energy. The UK actually uses more electricity on kettles than it does on ovens. Luckily the solution is simple, don’t overfill the kettle and regularly descale it to clean out the limescale. If it’s full of limescale it actually takes more energy to boil the same amount of water.

white ceramic cup on saucer
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Control Food Waste

Take a look at the fresh produce in your kitchen, particularly the fridge. In order to eliminate food waste, plan your meals around what’s available and prioritise food in order of sell-by date. If a perishable product is about to go off, for example bread or bananas, freeze it. Instead of throwing away any food that has already reached its expiry date, remove it from its packaging and place it in the food bin so it can be disposed of in an eco-friendly way.

Less Energy on Laundry

When it comes to washing your clothes, the most efficient way to save energy is by turning down the temperature on the washing machine. In fact, research confirms that washing at 30°C instead of 40°C reduces your energy consumption on average by 57% per cycle. The majority of the cycle’s energy goes on heating up the water, so by reducing the temperature less energy is consumed. Additional energy can also be saved by hanging fresh washing out to dry as opposed to using a machine dryer.

Washable Cloths

The idea of having a disposable tea towel seems absurd, yet that’s not quite the case with our cleaning cloths. By investing in washable cleaning cloths for cleaning and dusting your home, you are able to reduce household waste by washing rather than throwing away dirty cloths.

wooden hanger with towels and basket with bathroom products
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Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products

The next time you’re in need of a new cleaning product, opt for the eco-friendly options. Make a concerted effort to find local stores that stock these eco-friendly products as not all supermarkets will sell them. These products reap benefits as they don’t harm the environment. Additionally, by going green there will no longer be harmful chemicals absorbed into the skin or breathed in when cleaning. It’s a win-win purchase.

Ditch the Plastic

Fortunately, many governments have enforced laws to limit the use and sales of plastic. As of October 2020, regulations banned the sales of plastic straws, cotton buds and stirrers in England. We, as individuals, can also promote conscious living by ditching plastic. Replace the one-use plastic bags at the store with reusable shopping bags like tote bags or the lifelong bags available at the check-out. Also, when looking for new beauty, hygiene or cleaning products, opt for the solid options like bar soaps and shampoos. Instead of investing in products that come in plastic packaging, look for ones with glass containers for sustainability purposes.

LED Lightbulbs

The next time you go shopping for a new lightbulb, get an LED bulb as opposed to the conventional fluorescent bulb. Though LED bulbs tend to be more expensive, they actually save money in the long run as they are more energy efficient. LED bulbs produce less waste than their fluorescent counterparts when producing light. One reason is because more energy is spent on producing light rather than heat.

black kettle beside condiment shakers and green fruits and plants on tray on brown wooden table
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Go Paperless

Paperless billing is particularly common nowadays. From household bills to banking, the majority of companies offer email billing rather than post paper billing to save on paper. It’s also a great way to make bills more accessible too. Many tasks like assignments and journaling can also be done virtually too. Also, a kindle is a great option for any book lovers.

Avoid Trends

When shopping, ask yourself will I use this a year from now or is it just a fad? Think about your potential purchases with the future in mind, especially fashion. Shop for timeless products and items of clothing that you fall in love with, disregarding the influence of current trends. Shop smart on your journey towards sustainability.

Recycle, Resell, Reuse

For all things paper, plastic and glass related, recycling is a sustainable option. In terms of clothing, objects, games, toys etc., these products can be resold on sites like Ebay, Facebook, or even donated to local charities and, in turn, given to a new home. For items that have had their fair share of wear and tear, get creative and see if they can be turned into something new. A good place to start could be turning an old t-shirt into a cleaning cloth, though YouTube is an amazing source of DIY inspiration.

“Cherish the natural world because you’re a part of it and you depend on it.” – Sir David Attenborough

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