Plants help make a house a home, and carefully selected plants in a bedroom can aid a good night’s sleep. Some greenery releases soothing aromas that encourage slumber, while a handful of plants also improve the air quality in a bedroom.
The best oxygen-producing plants for bedrooms include spider plants, peace lilies, aloe vera, snake plants, rubber plants, golden pothos, areca palms, money plants, tulsi plants, and gardenias.
Not all air-purifying plants for a bedroom are size-appropriate, and some are higher maintenance than others. Find the ideal addition and you’ll sleep and breathe easier.
Is it OK to Have Plants in Your Bedroom?
Everybody has a unique idea of what makes the ideal bedroom décor.
Some people like to sleep in a comparatively spartan room, devoid of decorative flourishes. Others will be looking to add some personal flair to a bedroom, such as the addition of plants.
There’s plenty to like about introducing greenery into a bedroom, especially if you’re not fortunate enough to have a backyard. Indoor and Built Environment explain how plants improve and enhance our quality of life, and this can extend to sleep quality.
Benefits of Having Plants in Your Bedroom
The Journal of the Mississippi Academy of Sciences confirms that certain plants can extract harmful microbes from the air.
General air quality and ventilation will be bolstered by plants, though. This can be invaluable if you live in a large, noisy city. In such locations, you’re unlikely to open your windows for ventilation. That will let in road noise and air pollution.
What’s more, plants can bolster humidity in a bedroom. Be mindful of this, ensuring that the humidity doesn’t become excessive moisture, leading to dampness. Some degree of humidity in the room will help you breathe easier, though, staving off dry eyes and sore throats.
Of course, there’s an aesthetic appeal to plants in a bedroom, too. Greenery can look wonderful and bring real character to a room, assuming you have chosen an appropriate matching color scheme.
Different plants create varying choices of look.
Risks of Having Plants in Your Bedroom
Given that plants emit carbon dioxide into the atmosphere during the photosynthesis process, you may be concerned about sharing a bedroom with greenery.
As per Plant, Cell & Environment, plants react to differences in light and darkness, and photosynthesis ceases overnight. CO2 released by day is tempered by oxygen, and the plants are safe to share a room with once the sun goes down.
The main risk of sleeping in a bedroom with plants is damage or injury. For example, if you sleepwalk, you may trip over a plant pot. Equally, if you share a bed with pets, they may knock plants over.
What Are the Best Plants for Bedroom Air Quality?
If you’re looking for plants that’ll improve oxygenation in your bedroom, don’t just visit the local garden center and pick whatever looks prettiest. Not all plant life enhances air quality.
The question you need to ask yourself may not be “which plant purifies the air the most?” and more “which plant is best suited to my space and décor?”
Here are some plants commonly used to improve the oxygen supply in a bedroom:
1/ Spider Plant
The spider plant is arguably the most popular and commonplace indoor plant in the world.
Named for its easily identifiable, sprawling leaves that dangle, these are among the hardiest plants out there. A complete novice can successfully take care of a spider plant.
Spider plants thrive in cooler conditions, making them ideal for sleeping conditions, and can comfortably grow in dim light. It won’t matter if you occasionally forget to water a spider plant, as they prefer to dry out rather than become excessively soggy.
Spider plants can hang from a basket or sit atop a flat surface. In doing so, the plant will extract as much as 90% of any formaldehyde – found in many everyday household products – from the air. As formaldehyde is a potential carcinogen, that’s a vital service.
2/ Peace Lily
The peace lily is an evergreen plant that improves humidity in an indoor by up to 5%.
That’s ideal for anybody that struggles with dry eyes, nose, or throat in the bedroom. In doing so, the plant will filter anything inappropriate from the air and improve oxygen.
Peace lilies can get pretty big, so ensure you have space for this plant in your bedroom. It’ll not require much pruning if you have the room. Peace lilies are as simple to care for as they’re beautiful to look at.
All parts of the plant are toxic if ingested. You’re unlikely to eat a peace lily yourself but keep this in mind if you share a bedroom with curious pets, such as cats, dogs, and rabbits.
3/ Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is linked with sleep, to the point that many people sleep wearing aloe vera on their faces.
The aloe vera plant is also the most formidable, reliable oxygen producer out there. It’s recommended by NASA as the finest air-purifying plant in the world.
That’s because, unlike most plants, aloe vera continues to produce oxygen overnight. If all of this is not reason enough to celebrate the aloe vera plant, it also absorbs the CO2 we expel while breathing.
Aloe vera provides all of these benefits and asks for little in return. The plant needs around six hours of sunlight per day, but as a succulent, it holds water in its leaves. This means you can forget to water this plant for weeks and experience no ill effects.
4/ Snake Plant
The snake plant could be considered a relative of the spider plant. Not just because they’re both named after animals that many people are afraid of, but because it’s just as effective at purifying formaldehyde. The difference is that this plant’s leaves grow straight upward.
The snake plant is also comparable to aloe vera in that it continues to release oxygen throughout the night. This will keep the air in your bedroom breathable and increase the likelihood that you’ll remain asleep for an entire night.
The snake plant likes to remain dry, so don’t overwater the soil. Once every two weeks is usually fine, and you can get away with once a month during the winter.
The plant also tolerates all light conditions, though it’s happiest when out of direct sunlight.
5/ Rubber Plant
Despite the name, the rubber plant isn’t artificial. It still needs to be cared for, just like any living greenery. The rewards for undertaking this care include an almost wholesale removal of formaldehyde from the air.
Rubber plants will do well in a bedroom, kept by a window protected by curtains. This will allow enough light and heat without overpowering the plant. Rubber plants can also get by and flourish without too much watering.
If you take on a young rubber plant, be prepared for it to grow into a rubber tree eventually. This plant can reach heights of up to fifteen feet if well-tended. Ensure you have the space for such an undertaking.
6/ Golden Pothos
The golden pothos is often nicknamed “the cubicle plant” due to its omnipresence in workplaces across America. The plant cheers up surroundings, improves air quality by filtering unwanted chemicals from the air, and neutralizes unwanted odors.
A golden pothos plant is happiest in bright but indirect light, so avoid placing it directly within a south-facing window. Don’t worry, this is a very hardy plant. It only needs to be watered once a week – often, it can wait two weeks – and flourishes in any humidity level.
Keep your golden pothos at a height that pets cannot reach the leaves for chewing, as it can be irritable if eaten, and offer a temperature above 60 degrees and below 85.
7/ Areca Palm
This elegant palm tree releases a regular stream of moisture into the air of a bedroom.
As always, this requires a balancing act. Do not let the humidity overpower the atmosphere and lead to the growth of black mold.
Horticulture, Environment, and Biotechnology sings the praises of the areca palm as a purifier, though, sucking CO2 from the air. These plants enjoy access to light (though avoid scorching any leaves with direct sunlight) and keep them away from draughts.
You’ll also need to regularly water your areca palm to ensure it remains healthy and keep the humidity high by misting the soil during the winter.
Temperatures between 65 and 75 degrees will help the plant grow to its full capacity.
8/ Money Plant
Dedicated followers of feng shui typically recommend avoiding plants in the bedroom, but an expectation is made for the money plant. This greenery has a reputation as an excellent neutralizer of chemicals and supposedly calming stress and anxiety.
Money plants need daily sunlight with a degree of shade, so try placing it under a sheer curtain. Temperatures should not drop below between 65 degrees in the room and not exceed 80. Water a money plant every three weeks to cultivate its growth.
9/ Tulsi Plant (Holy Basil)
Colloquially known as Holy Basil in its native India, the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrated Medicine refers to the tulsi as a ‘herb for all seasons.’ This plant is popular in alternative therapy circles, thanks mainly to qualities that make it ideal for a bedroom.
The main reason is that the tulsi plant pumps oxygen into the air. It can provide as much as 20 hours of air in an enclosed space while absorbing and filtering CO2, carbon monoxide, etc.
The tulsi plant is the perfect way to create an urban oasis amid a city with questionable air quality. The plant flourishes most in temperatures of 70 degrees and above and must be regularly watered.
The gardenia is a beautiful flower that can be grown indoors or outside.
It’s undeniably the highest maintenance bloom on our list, struggling to grow and flourish in anything but perfect climes. As a result, many people choose to grow gardenias inside the home.
Gardenias thrive in temperatures of around 61 degrees, though this can drop by up to ten degrees in most cases. The plant needs light to flourish, so a well-lit and south-facing bedroom is best, but keep the plant out of direct sunlight.
Gardenias are something of a goldilocks plant, and you’ll need to get the watering levels just right. If you keep a gardenia alive, though, you’ll be rewarded. As well as purifying the air, the plant naturally relieves anxiety and encourages a good night’s sleep.
As air quality is so critical to a good night’s sleep, it’s never a bad idea to get some greenery that aids oxygenation in a bedroom. This is essential if you live in a larger city where air quality is questionable.