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Plants for Indoor Air Quality - Part of a Team Effort

  • Apr 06, 2022
  • 41

In basketball or football, some teams seem to depend on a player or a few players to make a difference in the outcome of a game. Coaches often preach “there is no I in team” to indicate that the game is won by a group effort. This is also indicative of the air quality in the home or office. One person or singular effort can’t be expected to be the hero who wins the game of good health.

It has long been known that the use of plants for indoor air quality is one of the best natural solutions there is. A rule of thumb is to have one plant for every 100 square feet of interior space, but that does not assure that air quality will be completely acceptable within a building because the number of pollutants can be more concentrated in some buildings than in others.

Using plants in conjunction with a good air filter system is a twofold way to attack poor air quality. An air filter system such as the one you can read about in the Blueair air purifier review is an example of what mechanical equipment can do in conjunction with houseplants. Having two players who can score points gives your team a much better opportunity to succeed.

We have a very active and work-oriented society, which discourages many people from keeping houseplants. They are viewed as time-consuming and problematic because they do require some attention, such as fertilization and watering. People who aren’t home much feel that they won’t able to care for the plants properly.

The selection criteria for plants should be directed at the lifestyle of a person and the location where the plants will be. Some living things require more sunlight than others do. Whether a plant is going in a workspace or in the home has much to do with the selection process.

A horticulturist is the best person to ask what plants will best serve any given situation. Peace lilies and ferns are two of the most often chosen plants because they are relatively easy to maintain and they survive in low light areas.

Reasons to Use Plants Indoors

One more analogy to sports might be that a team has individuals who contribute in different ways with a cumulative positive effect. On the basketball team, one player may be a big scorer, while another is a playmaker. The scorer won’t get the high numbers without someone to supply the ball when there is a scoring opportunity.

A good mechanical means of cleaning the air is the Alen T300 Air Purifier, which will do an excellent job of removing contaminants from the gases in the room. While the air purifier does do a good job, it does not photosynthesize the gases in the air. Plants not only remove harmful gases, but they also convert them into clean and breathable oxygen.

Homes and buildings are designed to be primarily air-tight to preserve the heated or cooled air for our comfort and to keep our utility costs low. In so doing, the amount of oxygen in the air is diminished until some outside air is drawn inside. Even though HVAC systems are designed to “make up” exterior air, enough people breathing in a building can seriously diminish that.

It is easy to see that indoor plants are a wise choice to work in a team effort along with an air purifier for the best indoor air quality both at home and at the office.


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Jeff Hertzberg By, Jeff Hertzberg
Jeff Hertzberg is a physician with 20 years of experience in health care as a practitioner, consultant, & faculty member at the University of Minnesota Medical School. His interests in baking & preventive health sparked a quest to apply the techniques of Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day to healthier ingredients. He lives in Minneapolis with his wife & two daughters.
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