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35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins

The best indoor plants will thrive inside while simultaneously cleaning the air and making your home’s interior safer

written by: Happy DIY Home | 07-04-2021

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins

Houseplants are a fun and easy way to green up the indoors, but did you know that they can also help clean and remove toxins from the air? Out of all of the common houseplants, 35 of the best indoor plants excel at this task. Happy DIY Home has created a comprehensive list based on a study NASA performed several years ago that tested the efficiency of different plants and their toxin-removing powers. If you don’t have at least one or two in your home, you should consider adding them.

Indoor Plants That Clean the Air

As a bonus, many of these best indoor plants are considered great for beginners because they’re very forgiving, easy to grow, and easy to maintain. You’ll get a short overview of the plant, how to care for them, and any additional features they have below.

The best indoor plants will thrive inside while simultaneously cleaning the air and making your home’s interior safer. They add pops of color to the environment, and many of them are very forgiving.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Aloe Vera

 

1. Aloe Vera

This is an attractive, easy succulent to grow that does well by itself or as a companion plant. You can use the juice from this best indoor plant’s leaves to relieve any pain you may have from burns and scrapes when you topically apply it. It’s either very short-stemmed or stemless, and it has very thick, green fleshy leaves that have small teeth. It does best in well-draining potting soil mix, and you want the bottom leaves of the plant to sit on the soil to provide support. You should water it sparingly to prevent rot, and you can remove the offsets to start a new plant when you see them.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Areca Palm

 

2. Areca Palm

The Areca Palm can grow up to six or seven feet tall when they’re fully matured, and they grow at a rate of six to 10 inches every year with the correct growing conditions. This best indoor plant will live for 10 years, and they come as a small clustered tabletop plant. You have to water them enough to keep their soil moist at all times, and they do best with higher humidity and light levels since they’re from a tropical region. You’ll repot them every two or three years, and you get deep green leaves with thin stalks and narrow edges that come to a point.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Lucky Bamboo
Picture via @greenhomedecor_

 

3. Bamboo Plant

Bamboo is an ornamental plant that you can easily shape and get it to grow wrapped around pieces of wood to create a pleasing look. This best indoor plant likes bright, filtered sunlight, and they grow very well in a vase filled with small stones for support and an inch of water. It can also grow in rich potting soil in temperatures above 50°F. You can cut trimmings from the stalk to create new plants, and the best time to shape them is when they’re new shoots because they’re flexible. With proper care, these bamboo plants can live for years and grow at a slow rate.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Banana Plant
Picture via @_daves_jungle_

 

4. Banana Plant

Both outdoor and indoor banana plants need a very humus-like and rich growing medium that drains very well. They also require plenty of indirect sunlight, and many varieties need at least 12 hours every day. You get purple buds with white flowers and broad leaves in a deep green hue with this best indoor plant. You fertilize it every month during the warmer months, and it’ll need a very big pot for the roots. It also requires a lot of water, and this is a very slow-growing species that can take years to mature with minimal maintenance.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Boston Fern
Picture via @botanicabyemma

 

5. Boston Fern

Boston Ferns like indirect light with high humidity and cooler temperatures to thrive, and they do very well as hanging plants. Once you get this best indoor plant set up in the proper environment, they don’t require a lot of hands-on care, and this makes them great for beginners. The soil should stay damp as much as possible, and they grow long leaves with dozens of smaller offshoots in a bright green coloring. It’s easy to propagate new ferns from a larger plant, and you can consider putting them in a peat moss pot for the best growing results. They can live for several years with proper care.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Broadleaf Lady Palm
Picture via @plantedinpots

 

6. Broadleaf Lady Palm

This best indoor plant never existed in the wild, and it originally came from Chinese cultivars. Broadleaf Lady Palms do wonderfully in shady environments, and they actually get much darker and more lush in this growing environment. They can grow between eight and twelve inches every year, and they can reach 14-feet high. You’ll need a well-draining soil that is slightly acidic, and it takes around seven years before your plant is ready to propagate. You should apply a 10-10-10 fertilizer twice a year while being very careful not to over fertilize or water it because it can hurt the plant.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Chinese Evergreen
Picture via @joyusgarden

 

7. Chinese Evergreen

Chinese Evergreens are a favorite best indoor plant for novice gardeners because they’re very easy to care for. They like moderate watering, and you can add a blood meal fertilizer once or twice a year to encourage steady growth. They grow well in temperatures above 60°F, and you can choose from a broad range of colors. The leaves come mottled with light greens, deep green, red, purple, or lime green, and they can produce flowers as they get older that look like Peace Lilies. You should wipe the plant’s leaves down with a dry cloth to help get rid of any dust the collects on them.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Chrysanthemum

 

8. Chrysanthemum

The Chrysanthemum is over six centuries old, and they have gorgeous coloring ranging from deep bronze to whites, pinks, yellows, reds, and more all offset by deep green foliage. This is a very hardy best indoor plant that does well in a broad range of growing conditions, including colder temperatures. They like well-draining soil and up to six hours of sun per day. You should plant them one to a container in loose-packed soil to give the roots time to spread out and establish themselves, and you should plan to repot and divide them every two or three years to keep them healthy and thriving.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Dendrobium Orchid
Picture via @beautiful_house_plants

 

9. Dendrobium Orchid

Many people think that orchids are extremely hard to care for, but the Dendrobium Orchid is widely considered to be one of the easiest best indoor plants to grow. These orchids like very tall but narrow pots, and you should water them twice a week in the morning hours. They require lots of indirect sunlight, and they like temperatures to range in the upper 60s to mid 70s. You should use an orchid-specific fertilizer on them a few times a year, and you may need to stake the plant to support it when it blooms. Adding a shallow tray with pebbles and water under the plant will increase the humidity levels.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Devil's Ivy

 

10. Devil’s Ivy

Indoors under the right conditions, this fast-growing vine can sprawl out an impressive eight to ten feet with four-inch leaves. Thsi best indoor plant does very well in a range of soil conditions as long as they’re dry, and you’ll need either indirect light or bright artificial light to help the plant keep its coloring. If it’s too far in the shade, it’ll turn a duller green. This plant tolerates drought very well, so if you forget to water it, it will bounce back relatively quickly. You can train it to climb around your home, or it’ll trail along the floor.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Dracaena Janet Craig
Picture via @nieuwkoopeurope

 

11. Dracaena Janet Craig

Dracaena is another beginner-friendly houseplant that likes medium indirect sunlight, and it does well in low lighting. You should water this best indoor plant deeply, but only water it when 75% of the topsoil is dry. They don’t do well if the temperature falls below 55°F, but they need very little fertilizer to grow. They have very large, upright leaves in a lush green coloring, and this plant is toxic to both people and animals so you want to keep it away from any pets or kids when you have it indoors. It’s also very sensitive to the chlorine and fluoride in tap water, so it should get distilled water only.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Dragon Tree
Picture via @insta.plantlady

 

12. Dragon Tree

This is a very slow-growing best indoor plant that can get up to six feet tall indoors. They can take over five years to grow to their mature height, and the leaves come in three colors ranging from dark red to yellow stripes. You have to train the stem of this tree to grow upwards, and the stems have a grey-brown bark that can sprout smaller trees from it. You do have to prune them regularly to keep them growing in a single direction. It likes bright light with slightly moist soil, slightly lower humidity levels, and temperatures from the mid-60s to low 70s. If you forget to water it for months, it’ll bounce back.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Dumb Cane
Picture via @houseplantsofsf

 

13. Dumb Cane

This is a poisonous house plant that has leaves coated with calcium oxalate crystals that will cause your mouth to get swollen if you eat them. They have a nice balance of yellow and green on the leaves, and they have very broad leaves that grow up and fan out. This best indoor plant prefers light shade with indirect light, and deep watering before being allowed to dry out. You should fertilize them monthly during the warmer months, and you want to keep the humidity levels high. Avoid cold drafts with this plant, and try to keep the temperature between 60 and 80°F.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Dwarf Date Palm
Picture via @plantasiagh

 

14. Dwarf Date Palm

The Dwarf Date Palm is a single-trunk best indoor plant that grows very slowly up to seven feet tall. It can take up to seven years to reach the mature height, and this plant gives you graceful arching fronds that can grow up to three feet long. They have featherly and slim leaves in bright green coloring. They need indirect but bright sunlight, and they like to dry out between watering sessions. Your soil should be a well-draining mix, and you want to lightly fertilize it a few times a year. Don’t let the temperatures fall below 50°F because this can stunt the plant’s growth or lead to damage.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Elephant Ear

 

15. Elephant Ear

Elephant ear plants are a bold and tropical species that grows very large leaves on thin stalks, and they can have red, yellow, or purple hues against a deep green coloring. You could start them in a smaller self-watering pot before repotting them in a larger one as they grow. You can grow them in full sun, but they prefer partial shade. You can water this best indoor sparingly when you notice the top layers going dry, and applying a slow-release fertilizer once or twice a year is a good idea. They can’t survive in colder conditions outside, and they go dormant in the colder weather before coming up again in the spring.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins English Ivy
Picture via @houseofkojo

 

16. English Ivy

English Ivy is an evergreen perennial plant, and they can climb up 80 feet due to having aerial rootlets, and they can spread out horizontally and reach eight inches high. This best indoor plant produces green-tinged flowers with pretty green leaves. They need partial to full shade, and this makes them great houseplants. They bloom in the fall, and they like moist and fertile soil that is neutral or slightly alkaline. The soil should stay slightly on the dry side, and they can grow in a temperature range starting at 45°F and going up to 80°F. They grow well in hanging baskets, and you should repot them every year.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Ficus

 

17. Ficus

The Ficus is technically a weeping fig, and they’re one of the more finicky best indoor plants on the list. They give you a tree-like shape that grows well in bright but indirect or filtered sunlight. They require temperatures to stay above 60°F, and a cold draft can kill them. You’ll need a tray with pebbles and water under the plant to keep the humidity levels up, and they like moist soil that drains well and has a rich makeup. You should fertilize them once a month to support their rapid growth rates, and you get a stem with a bark-like appearance with smaller green leaves that have a sheen to them that makes the plant look fake.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Fittonia

 

18. Fittonia

The fittonia made the best indoor plant list due to their deep green foliage with delicate veins that create a striking look. They can grow between three to six inches high, but they develop a trailing spread of 12 to 18 inches. This is a temperamental plant that requires partial shade or indirect sun, moist and well-draining soil, and slightly acidic soil. They rarely bloom indoors, but the traditional bloom time is in the early autumn months. The temperatures should range from 60 to 80°F to help ensure healthy and consistent growth.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Flamingo Lily
Picture via @plantonic.my

 

19. Flamingo Lily

This best indoor plant has waxy leaves in a bold red hue, and they can easily bloom all year-round to add a splash of color to your home. They require bright but indirect sunlight to grow, and they like their soil moist. You can use rainwater to keep them happy, and they like soil that drains really well to prevent root rot. It has a preference for high humidity levels, so you may have to set it in pebbles with water to boost the immediate humidity levels in the air. The temperature can’t drop below 58°F at night or it’ll damage the plant, but the bright flowers offset beautifully with the deep green foliage.

 

35 Best Indoor Plants That Clean the Air and Remove Toxins Gerbera Daisy
Picture via Gardening Know How

 

20. Gerbera Daisy

You can grow this best indoor plant from seeds, division, or seedlings. They need a lot of sunlight to do well, but they provide you with bright pops of colors ranging from pink and orange to bright yellow and red. You want to water them lightly in the morning hours and allow the leaves to dry out during the day to prevent fungal infections, and you can enhance how they grow by using a liquid fertilizer with fish emulsion.


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