British Lung Foundation
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I was trying to figure out how my lungs got bad and thought about using an air purifier. Doctor said it wasn't that helpful except during pollen season but that I should use a cool mist humidifier to combat dry air in winter. That has helped. I have bronchiectasis (recently diagnosed) , but never smoked. I started adding potted plants to my house to purify the air and found the names of the most effective ones by googling. I like plants anyway and that, I hope, will help though should've done it long ago. I saw a program on French TV (TV 5.org) about how people are vegetating their homes now with whole walls full of plants. Anyone know more about this idea?

28 Replies

Hello for the past 3 months I have had a peace Liliy next too the chair where I sleep

Don't know if it's mind over matter but I haven't been waking as much or coughing

You take care


deenyweeny in reply to newlands

Thanks for your comment. Peace lilies are one of the plants on the recommended list and I have two of them. I also have some really large airplane plants and am growing some new ones off the babies.

Hidden in reply to newlands

Be care if you have a cat Dorothy as lillies are poisonous to them. x

newlands in reply to Hidden

Thanks no cats just my Woody and he doesn't go near them

Hope your ok

Dorothy xx

Hidden in reply to newlands

Yep fine thanks Dorothy. Apart from my still bad back (3 weeks 5 days and counting), an infected boil which is just starting to go with ab's. Oh and a cough which you can probably hear from there. No energy, bitter cold and a huge list of jobs to do like hoursework blah blah :)

How are you? x

newlands in reply to Hidden

I'm ok thanks fed up of all this rain though xx

jarc13 in reply to Hidden

noticed your comment about a boil. used to have so many of them. i started putting bacitracin ointment on them and it was like magic. hope you can buy it where you live and it works like magic on you. :)

Hi The following are purifying house plants

Spider Plant

Snake Plant

Gerbera Daisy

Bamboo Palm

Areca Palm

Peace Lily

Between them they remove/ absorb nitrogen oxide,formaldehyde, xylene,toluene,

trichlorethlene, carbon dioxide and mold spores

The Gerbera Daisy improves sleep by giving of oxygen while absorbing carbon dioxide.

deenyweeny in reply to stone-UK

Thanks. I have some of those but not all. I have an aloe plant, too, and will be adding other plants as time goes by. I read that the average home should have 17 house plants. When I mentioned airplane plant, that's the same as a spider plant.

I have bronchiectasis with other stuff and I'm always a little confused about advice for humidifiers, drying washing on radiators is not good, but putting water in the room is !!!! I like house plants, but have aspergilloma in both lungs and it is found in soil, and rotting leaves. I do have 3 orchids, as they are in a special compost stuff. So I tend to stick with them :-) jan x

Mandy6513 in reply to grannyjan

Thats where i get confused to Jan...damp weather is a nightmare and getting a shower makes breathing difficult....also a mist humidifier is such a simple thing to use yet ive never had it mentioned to me by any professional


it sounds a wonderful idea deeny - except that every plant I have ever brought into my house has taken one look at me - and died!

Hidden in reply to Hidden

I am the same SS despite my father being a gardener. I did buy the odd plant when I was younger and my dad always had to rescue it. He told me he was going to call the plant police on me and report it. :D x


Oh I can't stand pot plants in my home. I don't know why but they give me the willies. I think it comes from watching an episode of The Avenger' way back in the 60's when it showed a creeping plant taking over the house with Steed and his side kick inside it :) x

deenyweeny in reply to Hidden




'. . . the effect on oxygen levels are not significant. There is a much greater impact on CO2 levels. Still, with respect to the effect on indoor air quality, the most important influence of plants is the removal of a class of pollutants known as volatile organic compounds (a.k.a. 'fumes') that include formaldehyde (Kim et al, 2010, Tarran et al 2007, Aydogan et al 2011. Plants also substantially reduce CO (carbon monoxide) (Tarran et al 2007). . . . '

So, it's a good plan to have plants around even if they don't increase oxygen levels, and they're pretty, too. Thanks for the input.

The comment about formaldehyde is interesting - I saw a prog on TV that suggested that some cleaners and air fresheners contain a substance which turns into formaldehyde in the atmosphere. It really shocked me!

I wouldn't get a mother inlaws tongue (snake plant ) they never keep still .

stone-UK in reply to mmzetor


I wonder if there is a Thin Ice plant?

mmzetor in reply to stone-UK

its ok my mother in law isn't on here

I have a peace lily too and they are easy to keep. They are also a good oxygenating plant. They are poisonous to rabbits.

Only problem I can see with a wall of plants is hay fever messing the day up?

Ive just bought 2 Himalayan salt rock lamps which have lots of information on how they clean the air etc and i dont know if its a massive coincidence but i havnt been breathless once since i got them a couple of days ago which is surprising as im full of cold

NASA did a lot of research on the best plants to use for air purification too


If you have bronchiectasis be careful when dealing with plants. Many of our bugs are found in compost as has already been said. Pseudomonas thrives in flower water, probably other bugs too. That's why flowers and plants are not allowed in hospitals anymore.

Three plants that do not compete for your air at night are cactus, aloe vera and mothers tongue all the rest take oxygen so don't have any other plants other than these 3 in your bedrooms.

to make a cheap indoor hyperbaric oxygen chamber buy a cool mist humidifier and some 35% food grade Hydrogen Peroxide add a few drops into the water and you have a homemade unit that will benefit you no end.

research negative Ions and lung protection rather than ask a doctor about something they don't know about. here's a couple of books that will help you and put you on the right track.



distilled water has a negative Ion which apart from the 70 thousand contaminants in tap water is an extra reason we should only be drinking distilled water also to help clean out your lungs you need to clean your liver out silymarin from mil thistle is awesome at cleaning the liver out as well as slippery elm bark.

These are interesting ideas. I will do some more reading about it.

I use a Britta water filtering pitcher. Hope it's as good as the water sold in stores.

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