The houseplants craze that began in the pandemic is far from over – if anything it’s gaining traction! And there’s a reason for this: Having greenery around is actually great for your mental health, air quality and stress levels! Studies showed that people living in urban areas that had access to green spaces like parks and gardens were far happier and more satisfied with life than people who had no greenery surrounding them. Office workers with plants around their office reported higher levels of job satisfaction and performance than those who didn’t – the point is, plants are important!
But it’s also important to be aware of what type of plants you have in your home. We all want to get the most out of our plants, even if all some of them do is sit there and look pretty. But for those of us interested in the air-filtering quality that some plants have, a little more research is required, especially if we have a pet running around the place!
The NASA Clean Air Study came up with a list of 12 plants that naturally help remove toxins, including formaldehyde, from the air – but how many of those plants are pet-safe? We want our air filtered to remove some of the CO2, and pollutants that come form paint and furniture, but we don’t want to compromise on our fur baby’s safety!
So for all you plant and pet moms out there, these are the best air-filtering plants that have been proven to be non-toxic to pets!*
*Note: Even when plants are classified as non-toxic to pets and humans, you should still ensure your pet doesn’t consume the plants- they may experience an upset stomach and vomiting, despite not causing lasting damage.
The adorable little money plant (aside from being rumoured to attract money to your household!) is a super easy little plant to look after! It’s not a hugely powerful purifier so you might need a few of them around to actually make a filtering difference, but it’s so cute that we don’t mind!
A medium amount for light works best for this Asian plant, so a nice mix of light and shade should do the job. Water about once a week to make sure it isn’t waterlogged and rest easy knowing it is totally safe for your pet to sniff around at!
You probably already have a spider plant as they’re one of the most popular plants around and can be found in any garden centre. They’re also popular as they’re a great starter plant for gardening beginners – very difficult to kill and not too fussy about where you place them, these little purifiers will thrive in light or shade.
They remove toxins like formaldehyde, benzene and carbon monoxide and are great for curious pets to sniff around at!
The bamboo palm is one of the fussier plants on this list, but it also is very suited to an indoor lifestyle and looks fabulous in any room, so if you don’t mind the work, they’re worth it! They cleanse formaldehyde from the air, an ingredient commonly found in bleaches, toilet cleaners and fabric softeners, making it a great one to keep around. It also filters benzene, toluene, and xylene from indoor air.
This plant needs bright but indirect light and should be watered once a week. It’s a slow grower, making it ideal for indoor life, but it can grow up to 12 feet tall after a few years! They need to be pruned often and you should avoid overwatering them and drain the pot well. There was debate around how suitable this plant was for pets for several years, but the ASPCA has ruled that it is safe for pets.
Another diva of a plant, the Boston Fern likes attention and is fussy about its care. Luscious and dramatic looking, its leafy fronds are a beautiful addition to any home. And it’s not just beautiful – it’s one of the best plants for filtering formaldehyde from the air as well as filtering car exhaust pollutants too!
This plant wants to be in a cool spot away from any direct sunlight. It likes to be kept humid so invest in a mister and spray it regularly. Feed these plants weekly during growing seasons, and monthly during the winter.