In honor of Earth Day, I thought I'd tell you about my lack of green-thumb-ness. ie. I kill most plants. Especially indoor plants.

I've always loved the idea of them, because my mom has always been great with things like this. I remember moving into college, and she bought me a cactus. She said there was no way I could kill it... she was wrong. So I pretty much swore off having house plants for the following 15+ years. Plants don't paw at you or whine when they're thirsty. They can't move their face away if they've had enough to drink. So I do the classic never water, then over-water. Most plants don't like that. 

detox house plants

As I've gotten more into natural/alternative health, and realized how amazing plants can be to have inside your house, I became determined to try again. As you may remember from elementary school, plants are perfectly matched to exist with us humans, and vice versa. We give them carbon dioxide, they give us oxygen. It's a happy living situation. 

Some plants are especially good at pulling the crap out of the air.

Have you considered what we're surrounded with? Unfortunate toxins from our furniture, paint, flooring, etc. So when I learned that some plants are especially great at detoxing these things, I of course wanted them. 

Two for one, right? Pretty + helping me breathe cleaner air. But I'm still a plant killer. So over the last year, I've been experimenting, and these are what I've kept alive successfully! (And also a few that I suggest trying if you're not horrible at plants like I am!*) 

  • Mother-in-Law's Tongue or Snake Plant (pictured above) – got the minimal pot at Ikea
  • Aloe Vera – bonus, you cut a piece off to rub the juice/sap on sun burns!
  • Spider Plant (my mom calls this one hen + chicks) – I kept this one alive for about 8 months! I'm going to get another one and try again ;) 
  • Money Plant – seems like a perfect thing to put in the feng shui money corner of your house
  • Areca Palm – maybe I'll get bold enough to try keeping one alive; they don't just remove toxins, they also help restore humidity - would be awesome in winter
  • Succulents + Cacti (pictured below) – although they're not especially powerful at detoxifying the air, I admit that I gave in to the trend last year, and am still hooked. I continue to have a bad record with cacti (another one bit the dust), but the succulents have done pretty well! 

* Many of these are known to be toxic for dogs, cats + kids, so place with caution!

PS. If you're using traditional 'air fresheners' consider trying essential oils instead. We've been using a diffuser and it's fabulous. We pick a different scent every few days, it's subtle, and we're not breathing toxins. Woot! (Email me if you're curious and I'd be happy to tell you more!)