Oxygen is essential for human survival, and house plants are a great way to promote fresh air and reduce indoor pollution in the home. Some oxygen-producing houseplants remove harmful chemicals and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the environment. But even the most ordinary and common indoor plants have air-purifying abilities.

What are the Highest Oxygen-Producing Plants?

While all house plants produce oxygen, some are better than others, releasing more oxygen and promoting clean air. Generally speaking, the best oxygen-producing plants are those with large leaves. It’s also true that mature plants release oxygen more reliably than young house plants.

Whie you’re here check this blog out from Gardeners Dream on the top house plants for your home.

Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata)

Also known as mother-in-law’s tongue, snake plants are famed for their erect, sword-like pointed leaves. Compared to other indoor plants of a similar size, the snake plant is one of the best for removing harmful chemicals and boosting indoor oxygen levels.

Snake plants are relatively easy to care for. They hold water in their fleshy green leaves, so don’t need to be watered very often. Be sure to let the soil dry out completely between waterings to help prevent root rot from taking hold. Your snake plant will grow fastest in bright light. But these attractive house plants are incredibly adaptable and cope well in low light conditions.

Golden Pothos (Epipremnum aureum)

A golden pothos plant can absorb carbon dioxide and turn it into oxygen at a higher rate than most other indoor plants. NASA’s 1989 clean air study showed this to be one of the best plants for eliminating pollutants such as benzene, toluene, formaldehyde, and xylene from the air.

Also known as devil’s ivy, golden pothos boasts heart-shaped leaves in various shades of green. The trailing habit is well suited to hanging baskets but looks equally good draping from a high shelf or windowsill. This plant species is easy to look after and grows well in almost any light level. Keep it out of direct sunlight to prevent leaf scorch, and water the plant whenever the top 2-3cm of soil feels dry.

Boston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata)

This tropical plant thrives in humid rooms and is renowned not only for producing oxygen, but also for filtering harmful formaldehyde from the air. Boston ferns (also known as sword ferns) are non-toxic to pets, and their bright green airy fronds are perfect for softening the straight edges of shelves and units.

Place a Boston fern in the bathroom or kitchen, where it will flourish in the humidity and remove the formaldehyde found in cleaning products from the air. Water your sword fern weekly or whenever the top layer of soil feels dry. Position the plant in indirect light and keep it away from heat sources and draughts.

These indoor plants don’t like to be touched, and moving them around too often can result in browning leaves. So to make the most of your oxygen-producing plant, try to handle it as little as possible.

Aloe Vera (Aloe barbadensis)

Also known as the first aid plant, aloe vera has various medicinal properties. It is used to soothe sunburn and other minor skin conditions and is bursting with antioxidants. On top of all that, these indoor plants produce oxygen and clean the air by removing carbon dioxide.

Aloe vera plants are simple to care for. Their fleshy succulent leaves store water, making them drought-tolerant and forgiving of an irregular watering schedule. Place your aloe vera in a warm, bright spot out of direct sunlight and water when the soil dries out.

What Plant is Good for the Bedroom?

House plants help purify the air and make breathing easier while asleep. They also promote a relaxing environment that helps you to drop off in the first place. When choosing house plants for the bedroom, it makes sense to opt for those that produce oxygen at night.

Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)

Spider plants have been popular for decades, and it’s easy to see why. As well as being attractive, easy to care and producing lots of baby plants, spider plants are effective air purifiers. These common indoor plants remove carbon monoxide and xylene from the air. They also turn carbon dioxide into oxygen to improve air quality around the home.

A spider plant is the ideal choice for inexperienced growers who’d prefer to nurture a resilient plant that is almost impossible to kill. This low-maintenance plant produces oxygen 24 hours a day yet doesn’t need attention to thrive.

The long, slender strap-shaped leaves arch out from the centre, resembling a spider’s legs. Keep your spider plant in moist but well-draining soil in indirect sunlight or partial shade and mist occasionally if the air is dry.

Gerbera Daisy (Gerbera jamesonii)

The most colourful flowering plant to make the list, the gerbera daisy is a fantastic air purifier. It produces oxygen at night and effectively removes dust and excess carbon dioxide. This makes it the perfect choice for plant owners with respiratory conditions that can be exacerbated overnight.

Bright green foliage gives way to tall upright stems, each holding a beautiful daisy flower. Gerbera daisies come in an array of colours and are a great way to brighten up nightstands or windowsills. They prefer a bright spot but keep them out of the strong afternoon sun to prevent the leaves from scorching. Water weekly or whenever the top 2-3cm of soil feels dry, letting excess water drain freely before replacing the plant.

Weeping Fig (Ficus benjamina)

Boasting arching stems of glossy green leaves and an upright growth habit, the weeping fig is one of the best plants for producing oxygen, removing toxins from the home and improving indoor air quality. A weeping fig plant is especially effective at filtering pollutants like xylene and toluene from the air.

These plants can be quite fussy and drop their leaves when they’re unhappy. To prevent this, keep your weeping fig in a bright spot out of direct sunlight and be careful not to over-water the plant. Water when the top 2-3cm of soil feels dry, allowing excess moisture to drain away before placing the weeping fig back in its spot.

Chinese Money Plant (Pilea peperomioides)

These oxygen-producing plants are amazing at removing air pollutants around the home. Chinese money plants have boomed inpopularity over the past few years, partly due to their Instagrammable appearance. Almost perfectly round coin-shaped leaves grow on slender green stalks, producing a dramatically attractive effect.

These large leaves make it easy for the Chinese money plant to produce the most oxygen possible, reducing air pollution in the room. A well-placed Chinese money plant increases oxygen levels during the night, helping you get a good night’s sleep.

Peace Lily ( Spathiphyllum wallisii)

The peace lily is a beautiful plant with rich, glossy green leaves perfectly complementing the pure white flower spathes that appear periodically throughout the year. A peace lily is an ideal plant for the bedroom. It can remove harmful chemicals from the air during the day and produces oxygen at night, improving the air quality while you sleep.

Peace lilies thrive in bright indirect light but tolerate light shade too. They prefer moist, well-draining soil and appreciate the occasional misting between waterings.

Areca Palm (Dypsis lutescens)

Areca palms are ideal for removing common household pollutants such as toluene, formaldehyde, and xylene. They release oxygen at night and even take dust particles out of the air, making them an ideal choice for people with breathing difficulties.

Areca palms are relatively simple to care for. They prefer moist soil in the growing season and dry soil in winter and like to be misting between waterings. The areca palm can tolerate low light levels but flourishes best in indirect sunlight.

Areca palms regularly feature on lists of the the highest oxygen producing plants and are one of the most popular house plants for clean air. Bright green feathery fronds grow up and out from tall upright stems, creating a look that’s as fresh as the air quality the plant provides. An areca palm can reach up to 6 feet tall and is a wonderful choice of indoor plant for larger bedrooms.

Do Plants Produce Oxygen in the Winter?

Plants produce the most oxygen during spring and summer when the plants are actively growing. This is because most oxygen production occurs due to photosynthesis. Because there is less light available in autumn and winter, and therefore less photosynthesis, less oxygen is produced in the colder seasons.

However, as house plants are generally evergreen, they still release some oxygen into the air during winter, albeit not as much as during the warmer months.

Introducing oxygen-producing houseplants into the home has many benefits. Bringing a peace lily, areca palm, Boston fern or aloe vera plant into the home boosts mental well-being, relieves stress and adds to the room’s interior design. One of the biggest benefits is that it removes harmful chemicals from the air and will release oxygen to help support a healthy respiratory system. What’s not to like?

Morgan Wilson

Morgan Wilson, holding a Master's in Horticulture from Cornell University, has been an influential figure in gardening and landscape design for over 15 years. Before this, he worked as a landscape designer and a horticultural therapist. He has provided insights into organic gardening, native landscaping, and urban gardening solutions. Her background includes working in public gardens and environmental education. He is a nature photographer in her spare time and participates in community greening projects. He is also a great birdwatcher and enjoys creating wildlife-friendly garden spaces.

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