Regenwald auf der Fensterbank

Rainforest on the windowsill

We give off carbon dioxide and take in oxygen. C0 2 against 0 2 , a perfect cycle that constantly gives us fresh breathing air. Flora also has the necessary know-how when it comes to other waste materials.

Green liver
Plants absorb pollutants through their roots and collect them in leaves or stems. In the Philippines, for example, a type of plant extracts nickel from the ground. The Rinorea niccolifera thrives where the soil is rich in heavy metals; In the course of evolution it has adapted genetically. Plants are also able to remove chemicals from polluted soil. An example: At a US disposal site for chemical weapons and industrial waste, poplar trees clean the earth.

Green kidney
How plants make contaminated water drinkable again is being researched at the TU Berlin, among others. Hornwort, milfoil and waterweed, for example, filter out poisons, heavy metals and other pollutants from lakes, ponds, rivers and also from rainwater. The plants have learned to convert harmful substances - and use them to grow.

Green lung
Above all, the (daily dwindling!) rainforests of Asia, Africa and South America, but also other forests, act like huge filters that free the air of dust, dirt and harmful particles. Without trees we would hardly be able to breathe because of all the traffic, heat and industrial emissions. What parks and street trees can do for an entire city, smaller plants can do in your home and at work.

Space exploration
This finding is not new. In March 1788 a speech was heard in Munich about the corruption of the air we breathe, its harmfulness to people's health, and the way to improve it easily and quickly. “The purest air flows from the plants,” said the author, Karl von Eckartshausen. “We also know that plants purify the air.” This was proven 200 years later: The US space agency NASA had spent years researching ways to purify the air we breathe in space stations. She discovered that some plants are particularly talented at this.

Naturopathic treatments
To explain what a potted plant can do in the Space Station or in the living room, let's take a short trip around the world: Putrefactive gases are produced around the world. Their concentration and composition depend on the geographical location and the nature of the soil. The gases are mainly hydrocarbon compounds. In order to grow healthily in their environment, plants produce enzymes that break down toxic substances.

What was initially a protective function turned into a useful function over the course of evolution. Plants obtain products for their own metabolism (i.e. food) from the breakdown of toxins, and they release the rest into the environment as oxygen. Since putrefactive gases are very different, plants that were originally the same have developed into subspecies that break down poisons with different intensities.

Room service
Pollutants that contaminate or even poison our indoor air often occur as hydrocarbon compounds - such as the putrefactive gases found in nature. If you want to breathe more carefree indoors, you just need to bring the right plants into your house. They prove to be amazing chemists, creating a variety of useful ones from the most harmful substances. Species that have been proven to purify the air mostly come from tropical and subtropical rainforest zones. The roots of many plants lie very flat in the ground or stretch straight into the air to fish for nutrients.

Green air purification takes place in two ways: On the underside of the plant leaves there are stomata, the so-called stomata, which normally serve for the C0 2 -0 2 exchange. Harmful substances can get into the interior of the plant through these openings. There they are biochemically broken down by enzymes. This creates oxygen and non-toxic metabolic products that are stored in the cell walls in the form of organic acids, glucose, etc. This means that air-purifying plants do not poison themselves, but rather feed on the pollutants.

Root canal treatment
The absorption of poison is much more effective in the root area of ​​the plant: soil bacteria and enzymes produced by the hair roots break down poison into nutrients. This plant food is absorbed by the roots as a gelatinous mass. The NASA study showed that plants also detoxify indoor air when their leaves are completely removed. However, air has to get to the roots - but because it is excluded in conventional plant pots, we have invented the AIRY system for this.

Be careful plant?!
Wait a moment! Aren't houseplants actually unhealthy because mold easily forms on the potting soil and then fungal spores get into the air? This won't happen as long as you care for your plants properly: please use organic fertilizers instead of chemical ones and don't water them too much! By the way, hydroponics do not offer reliable protection: mold thrives here in secret.

Only a healthy plant can optimally purify the air in the room! If you have often watered too hard and discovered traces of mold on the soil, we recommend that you ignore chemical weapons and use a tea that was already considered a remedy in the Inca Empire: two heaped teaspoons of the inner bark of the lapacho tree Bring 500 ml of water to the boil, let it steep and cool, then spray the affected substrate surface with it - the fungicidal effect becomes apparent within 48 hours.

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