During these corona times, health is top of mind for most of us. One health factor that is often underexposed is the great work that plants do to improve our environment. Plants bring air to everyone. They work overtime to clean our world. It is about time we are reminded of this phenomenon. Plants are way more than "what you see is what you get." They go beyond just being a decoration for your home, terrace, or garden. They are more than just a window dressing for offices and shops. Plants produce a unique hidden gift that we humans need: air.
NASA Clean Air Study
Is this new intel? Not at all. There is this NASA Clean Air Study back in the late 1980s that revealed the purifying role plants have. No need here to sum up all the toxic workings of chemicals in the air that we breathe like trichloroethylene, formaldehyde, or ammonia, but you bet there is a lot of pollution to swallow these days. Many plants have the ability to clean this, giving relief to quite some physical complaints related to dirty air.
Which Plants Work Best?
Many plants deserve the title ‘Top Air Cleaner’. Some of them are the green plants Phoenix Roebellinii, Ficus, Dracaena, Chamaedorea, and Sansevieria varieties. Also the Clusia from another article on Thursd. is a nice tiny air cleaner. Also, flowering plants work well, like Chrysanthemum, Gerbera, and Anthurium. According to this same NASA Study, one plant for every ten square meters should suffice to clean indoor spaces. But that was over thirty years ago. We sure don’t need less today, perhaps even more.
Plants are Good for Florists
Now that it looks like about half our population is in quarantine it is even more important to get access to clean air. Plants are purchased for decoration and because they last longer than cut flowers. Therefore, florists must realize that plants are often bought for different purposes. I would recommend florists to emphasize the role plants play in our lives. The message should also be that plants bring air to everyone. So tell the tale of healthy plants too, instead of focusing merely on the decorative aspect. People need these stories today. Not just for their homes, but for their whole environment.