With recent increased publicity about the dangers of radon gas in our homes, I was curious whether indoor plants could mitigate radon’s effects. It’s well-documented that houseplants can absorb and neutralize many toxic compounds indoors that exude from today’s building materials, carpeting and furniture; things like formaldehyde and volatile organic compounds (voc’s.) Common houseplants like spider plants, palms, ferns and ivies are quite efficient at cleansing the air and making home air healthier.
Do plants have this same air-purifying effects on radon gas that is a product of naturally occurring soil elements; a gas that can easily enter homes through basements and foundations? To find an answer, I scoured as many scientific sources as I could search, including university recommendations. There is extremely little written about this topic, with apparently little research.
But the few sources I did locate indicated that indoor plants have little or no effect on radon gas.
So although houseplants greatly improve our indoor environment, it appears they cannot be depended upon to eliminate the dangers of radon gas indoors. Unless future research is conducted that proves otherwise.