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10 Best Pet-Friendly Houseplants for Air Purification

House Plants

The pandemic shifted the work–life balance of many, as some now have more room for hobbies and self-care. It’s great to be at home more, but that can cause air pollution. The more people sharing a space, the worse it gets. Truth is, most objects, like furniture, contain harmful chemicals we breathe in everyday. That’s why we should make room for plants — they’re all-natural air purifiers. 

Plant care is an activity many people bought into during the pandemic, and the trend isn’t going anywhere. Many folks have made the jump to “plant parenthood.” In fact, seven out of 10 millennials consider themselves plant parents. Not only do they help relieve stress, but plants get rid of 87 per cent of airborne toxins per day, according to Garden Pals

Despite their superpowers, some plants are toxic to pets. Luckily, numerous plants are the whole package — gorgeous, purifying, and toxic-free.  Here’s a list of pet-friendly super-plants:

1. Gerbera Daisy

Gerberas like a lot of light, but not too much heat. They grow slowly, but once they’ve fully matured, place them in an inch of water. Because gerberas grow slow, it’s best to live in a climate with little to no snow in the winter as they don’t thrive in temperatures below seven degrees Celsius. 

2. Boston Fern

Native to tropical climates, this plant likes warmth and humidity. Hang it near bright, indirect sunlight. The Boston fern blooms slowly in spring and summer, and it enjoys lightly moist soil. Water it every other week in winter, and mist it to increase humidity (The Spruce). 

3. Bamboo Palm

Bamboo palms are tropical, so they’re perfect to place in humid bathrooms (Indoor Gardening). Water at least once a week, and if the environment gets dry, water more often. Palms enjoy indirect sunlight, but if your home can’t provide that, they simply won’t grow as fast. 

4. Spider Plant

Spider plants don’t require much maintenance, but they thrive in warm, humid places. Replicate this with a humidifier or frequent misting. This plant loves damp soil, which can be maintained with a once-a-week watering routine. 

5. Blue Echeveria

A succulent, such as the floral-like echeveria, is unlike other species. While others only produce oxygen during photosynthesis (when in contact with sunlight), succulents create oxygen at all times (Grow Your Yard). Not only that, but succulents also increase moisture by releasing water into the air. So, if you have some plants who could use the extra humidity, succulents help.

6. Aloe Vera

Aloe vera thrives on neglect. This succulent is made for beginners and those with little time on their hands. The gel inside the plant actually has medicinal properties, like healing minor scrapes and burns!

7. Money Tree

A money tree requires indirect sunlight and can be watered infrequently. Said to increase prosperity (Properly Rooted), this plant gets stressed when moved often — you’ll notice its leaves turn yellow and begin to fall — so treat it with kindness.

8. Cacti

Varieties of forest and desert cacti make great houseplants. Cacti don’t need much sun, but they benefit from at least four hours of indirect sunlight per day. Their watering routine depends on the season, but ultimately, cacti don’t need to drink much. 

9. Aluminum Plant

This silver-green beauty grows well in indirect light while indoors, but only up to four hours and in semi-shade. It has some particularities, as it likes to drink more during its growth season while maintaining moisture year-round.

10. Elephant Bush

This succulent has round leaves resembling clovers, and it is a much-favored food for elephants, which is how it got its name. The elephant bush wants to be drenched in water and then dried out over several weeks. There’s no strict routine, which makes it great for beginners or those with little time. 

Josephine Mwanvua | Staff Writer

Spring 2024

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