Take a Fresh Breath 

by RaeAnne Marsh

Indoor air quality has taken on greater import in this COVID era. While they are not a replacement for air filtration systems, plants are more than an aesthetic reprieve for our eyes. Since NASA began researching ways to improve air quality for astronauts in closed environments in space, we’ve learned they can counter some of the toxins our made environment surrounds us with — in addition to helping reduce stress and, of course, recycling our carbon-dioxide exhalations into the oxygen we need to breathe. If the indoor environment includes pets and small children, it would be wise to discuss choices with staff at a plant nursery as some plants are toxic when ingested.

Spider Plants

A non-toxic choice in more than 200 species, this plant cleans the air of formaldehyde and xylene. It works well in a hanging basket and, an added plus, is easy to care for.


Also non-toxic, bamboo plants remove many common indoor toxins while also releasing moisture into the air.

Chinese Evergreen

Carbon monoxide and benzene are two of the many toxins Chinese evergreens eliminate. And the plants add some bright color as its leaves in some varieties are shot through with a deep pink.

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