When researching the potential of life — or at least a space station — on Mars, NASA looked seriously at the possibility of using plants as natural air-con units.
Already known for absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen — nicely complementing humans, which do the opposite — a number of indoor plants also proved useful in removing toxic chemicals from the air, including known carcinogens benzene, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene.
You may ask why anyone would have those nasties indoors. Unfortunately, many of these chemicals can be found in tobacco smoke, car exhausts and other fumes that form urban smog, as well as compounds emitted from new carpets, furniture, paint, household cleaners, and also from cooking and gas heaters.
The combined effect became known in the 1990s as sick building syndrome.
A CSIRO study into indoor air quality found that an attached garage with internal linking door posed a greater risk of pollution than living on a main road.
As well as cleaning the air, a lot of research shows that plants actually make people feel better.
To see plants that will purify your air click here