Haskins Garden Centres has offered its customers alternative ways of getting healthy this year by introducing a range of house plants which are shown to remove toxins from the air.

During the winter months, homeowners tend to keep windows closed and turn up the central heating – according to Haskins Garden Centre this creates the perfect environment for toxic compounds to linger until their concentration becomes detrimental to individual health.

Alasdair Urquhart, plant advisor at Haskins Garden Centre, said: “Healthy living starts at home and these days we are exposed to so many different chemicals and fumes that it soon takes a toll on our health.

“A healthy houseplant is an ideal investment at this time of year as we have less fresh air flowing freely through the home when the windows are closed. This limits the amount of fresh air which enters our homes. By adding a few unique houseplants to your home, you are adding interest to a room as well as clearing away toxins and purifying the air.”

Clean-air houseplants are available at Haskins Garden Centres (www.haskins.co.uk) in Ferndown in Dorset, West End in Southampton and Roundstone and Snowhill in West Sussex and include:

  1. Areca Palm (Yellow Butterfly Palm)

This graceful palm loves bright, direct sunlight and is consistently rated among the best houseplants for removing all air toxins. It also acts as an excellent air humidifier for dry, air conditioned offices and is animal safe.

  1. Spathiphyllum (Peace Lilly)

Preferring partial shade, this elegant plant is one of the few air purifiers which flowers. It blooms all year round and rids the air of benzene, a carcinogen found in paints, furniture wax and polishes. It also absorbs acetone, which is emitted by electronics, adhesives and certain cleaners.

  1. Aloe vera

An easy to grow, sun-loving succulent which thrives in bright conditions. It helps clear the air of formaldehyde and benzene which can be a by-product of chemical based cleaners, paints and more. It’s also well known that the gel inside can heal cuts and burns.

  1. Nephrolepis exalta (Boston fern)

First popularised during the Victorian era, the Boston fern is considered one of the most efficient air purifiers. It works especially well in removing formaldehyde and prefers indirect light or darker rooms. It is also animal safe.

  1. Phlebodium ‘Blue Star’ (Rabbits foot fern)

As a good all-round air purifier, this blue-green fern has striking foliage that performs well in areas of indirect light. It prefers to be watered from beneath and is animal safe.