If your apartment seems to be a bit impersonal and you want to spruce it up with a splash of color houseplants can be the perfect solution. Indoor plants don't just look nice, they also improve the air quality by removing common pollutants such as carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, and benzene. While you may not expect these chemicals to be inside your home they are used in the production of many products such as carpeting and can leave a residual smell as they dissipate. Houseplants can clean your air without using chemical sprays to mask odors. Here are some easy to care for indoor plants that are great for apartments:
- Spider Plant: formally known as Chlorophytum Comosum, spider plants are one of the easiest plants to care for and also work the hardest when it comes to cleaning the air. You can hang your plant from a hook or place it on a shelf or table and it will thrive without much sunlight. As a bonus, spider plants propagate by shooting off baby plants so you can easily offer them as gifts to friends and family.
- Ivy: there are many varieties of ivy, so you can choose one that pleases your eye. Ivies will thrive in both sun and shade and can be trained to take a shape, frame a window, or drape gracefully from a shelf. You can also plant them as a groundcover around a larger potted plant.
- Peace Lily: the peace lily, or Spathiphyllum, is another easy to care for houseplant that only needs a drink when it begins to droop. If you like this elegant plant make sure to keep it out of the reach of children and pets as it is slightly toxic.
- Mother-in-Law's-Tongue: the Sansevieria Trifasciata is popular because it can take most any condition you dish out. It's a hardy succulent that thrives in sun and shade, heat and cool, and will live most anywhere as long as you don't water it too much or leave it to dry out too long.
- Cactus: cacti come in all shapes and sizes and are perhaps the least fussy houseplant you can find. As long as it has plenty of indirect sunlight it can survive, and only needs a bit of water once every week or two. Make sure you place your cactus in a spot where it won't get bumped because the spines can be quite painful!
- Aloe: aloe plants hold many jobs: they look great, clean the air, and also provide a quick medicine for burns and scrapes. Aloes need to be near a window and are quite thirsty but can survive a week or more without water. When the top two inches of soil are dry your aloe will need a drink but can wait a while if you're out of town.