15 Houseplants That Will Improve Your Indoor Air Quality

2. Snake Plant

Also known as “mother-in-law’s tongue” or “tiger’s tail” in Asia, the snake plant from West Africa is another good one to grow in your house and office for air purification. It’s one of the best air purifiers, removing formaldehyde, nitrogen oxide, xylene, trichloroethylene, and benzene. This succulent has leathery, strap-like leaves which are attractively variegated, usually with a creamy-colored edge.

The Snake Plant is one of the simplest plants to grow indoors as it’s highly tolerant of being ignored. It can even thrive in low light conditions, though does enjoy the light and prefers a mix of sun and shade during the day. Being a succulent, it needs little water, so keep the soil more on the dry side, especially in the cooler months. Over-watering is the most common cause of problems with your plant.

It’s quite a tall plant, but the leaves grow almost straight up, so they don’t take up much space and their clean architectural shape and strappy leaves keep them looking fresh even when somewhat neglected. While it doesn’t have thorns, you’re safest avoiding the tips if the long leaves, which can be a little pointed. You can easily grow more from cuttings or by dividing – simply remove the fleshy rhizomes from the roots and pot in free draining soil.

Don’t re-pot your plant too often – rather leave it in the same pot until the pot cracks. Give the waxy leaves a wipe with a wet cloth occasionally to remove dust and bring back the sparkle, and of course, this will help the plant to scrub the air as well as possible. While it is a flowering plant with small, greenish-white flowers, it is less likely to flower indoors, but your care might be rewarded with flowers one day.