Can You Be Allergic to Houseplants? [Everything you need to know]

Allergies are not always dependent on plants. They can be caused by the elements that affect our plants and the dust that accumulates on them when neglected. However, understanding our allergies and what triggers them can allow us to avoid the reactions.

Can you be allergic to houseplants? Yes, you can! Since we tend to spend a lot of our time indoors nowadays, we are exposed to many elements within the four walls of our rooms. If your room is filled with houseplants that are common allergens, you need to do something about it!

Let’s understand the different houseplants, which ones cause allergies, and how we can avoid them!

Easy to Grow Houseplants (6 Pack), Live House Plants in Plant Containers, Growers Choice Plant Set in Planters with Potting Soil Mix, Home Décor Planting Kit or Outdoor Garden Gifts by Plants for Pets

Can Houseplants Cause Allergies?

“It is not hard to start a small garden; all you need is a sapling, a planting pot, a small bag of soil, and regular watering. There you go, you helped cool the earth down by one plant.” — Noora Ahmed

So what happens when plants prove dangerous?

Yes, houseplants can cause allergies. There are many different reasons why they do so. Indoor plants can combine with many natural allergens within your home, which can negatively impact your health.

There’s a reason why some people spend so much time researching the kinds of plants that are safe for their pets. They know how sensitive their pets are, and any plant that triggers their pets’ allergies is not allowed. You deserve the same attention!

  • Watch Out for Mold

Try to inspect your plants daily. The issue is often mold, which can grow within damp soil and irritate allergies. People with respiratory illnesses must stay clear of this as it can worsen their symptoms.

  • Dust

This issue is often ignored in most households, as it is present nearly everywhere. However, dust in massive quantities can damage your lungs. These quantities can only be found on leaves of indoor plants, which have been neglected for some time.

Try to spray your plants regularly and look out for dust accumulation. There’s no need for an Aloe Vera plant if all it does is increase the quantity of dust in your home.

  • Pollen

People need to understand the kind of houseplant they are investing in. Many different types of houseplants come with and without flowers. If you are prone to allergies, perhaps a houseplant that does not flower would suit you better.

This is owing to the pollen on these flowers, which can trigger already existing allergies.

Many houseplants causing allergies are not given away simply because the owners have developed an attachment. Remember, nothing is more important than your health. Giving away a plant wreaking havoc on your inner system can lead to better health.

Read How Much Oxygen Does a House Plant Produce?

Allergy-Inducing Plants to Avoid

Here are some facts about allergy-inducing plants, why plants cause allergies, and which ones you should avoid!

Are Houseplants Causing My Allergies?

Houseplants are a healthy addition to the environment of your home. However, when you start experiencing an allergic reaction, it’s time to reassess the kind of plant you are exposing yourself to. Your immune system often reacts to an allergen present within or on the plant, which can cause allergies.

These allergens are usually airborne. The solution is simple. Invest in plants that do not irritate your sinuses and trigger your allergies!

  1. Look for a plant that produces a lot of pollen in your home. Remove it from the environment to replace it with a plant that does not produce a lot of pollen.
  2. Expansive leaves that go deep into a plant are often hard to manage and clean. These can often be missed or ignored when watering your other houseplants. If you cannot care for these plants, consider replacing them with smaller ones.
  3. Try to understand how much water your plant needs. A plant can only absorb so much water. The excess water is left in the soil. Since this water doesn’t drain out, it becomes stagnant, leading to mold development. Try to water your plants sparingly.
  4. You may be allergic to a particular kind of plant. Some people are allergic to poison ivy, chrysanthemums, and some kinds of flowers. These can cause their skin to break out in hives. If this sounds similar, perhaps you should get tested for allergies.
  5. Avoid plants that shoot out liquids, acids, or poisons to protect themselves. Often, these plants can also cause allergies which can worsen over time.

Some indoor plants help with allergies. However, others can worsen them. Conduct your research before buying your houseplants.

Read How to Kill House Plant Bugs

Which Houseplants Should I Avoid?

Do not purchase an allergy-inducing houseplant while looking for an air-purifying plant. We understand how important houseplants are when it comes to the air quality of your home. However, some plants can trigger allergies in people with certain medical conditions.

Allergy TypePlant
Contact DermatitisFerns, Lily, Chrysanthemum, Geraniums, Philodendrons, African Violets
HivesLily, Tulip plant
Respiratory AllergiesIvy, Palm Trees, Ficus Benjamina, Waxplant, Ferns, Philodendrons

Here are some reasons why some plants can cause you allergies in your home.

  • Bonsai Plants

These plants are great for decorating or maintaining peace within your home. They look great; you can show them off anytime your friends come around. However, some kinds of Bonsai can get you in trouble if you are allergic to them.

Juniper and Cedar, along with the many other types of Bonsai, need to be taken care of regularly, and they can infect you if you prune them without gloves.

  • Palms or Flowering Plants

Going for flowering plants has its risks. If it’s a male flower, it will produce a lot of pollen. This pollen can cause you really bad allergies.

  • Ferns

Ferns can cause reactions similar to the hives you experience when coming in contact with poison ivy. If you are allergic to ferns, they are dangerous plants to keep.

  • Plants with Big Leaves

If you invest in houseplants, make sure you clean them regularly. Watering your houseplants could help you avoid many issues from the dirt that accumulates on plant leaves.

However, it is hard to maintain a plant with big leaves. You can’t get to every inch of the plant every time, so you are bound to miss out on dust. This dust can cause harm to your lungs.

Read Why Are My House Plant’s Leaves Curling Up?

Symptoms of Houseplants Causing Allergies

Here are some signs you may experience if you have allergies caused by houseplants.

Irritated or Watery Eyes

This is the first sign a houseplant is causing your allergies to flare up. If your eyes are itching, considerably red, or watering, it means that your houseplant is reacting with your immune system.

Sneezing or Watering Nose

This means that the allergen has entered your system and is now irritating your sinuses.

Puffy Eyes or Tiredness

These symptoms often appear long after introducing houseplants causing allergies in your home. They mean that you have been suffering from these allergies for some time and should look into solutions.

According to WebMD, houseplants have numerous health benefits; one needs to invest in those that go well with their health. Before buying a houseplant in the USA, try searching for its qualities, whether they ooze liquids that could cause contact allergies or if they are a terrible choice for people with respiratory issues.

Read Why Is My House Plant Dying

Preventing Allergic Reactions to Houseplants in the USA

Here is how you can prevent allergic reactions to houseplants in the USA and the best houseplants for allergies, be it plants in humid states such as Texas or colder ones such as Massachusetts.

Choose Non-Flowering Plants

Try to aim for species that can save you from pollen.

Do Not Overwater Your Plants

Overwatering your plants can lead to mold growth.

Give Them Their Days in the Sun

If your plant does not soak up all its water, it may need heat. Heat exposure can prevent mold from attacking your plant.

Expose Them to Humidity

If you do not have a dehumidifier, a great trick is to leave your plants in your bathroom and turn on boiling water in the shower.

Read Why is My Houseplant Wilting

The Best Houseplants for Allergies You Can Order Today

Opt for plants that can clean your air. This can remove the effects of mold, pollen, and the dust which has wreaked havoc on your lungs all year.

  1. Peace Lily
  2. Pothos Plant
  3. Palms like Lady Palm and Bamboo Palm
  4. Dracaena Plant

Best Houseplant for Allergies

Here is an extensive guide on the kinds of plants you can keep in your home. Who said you can’t enjoy your plants, even if you are allergic to them?

Indoor Plants Can Aid Allergies

Some indoor plants are actually helpful. They can assist people with their allergies. You can introduce plants to your home without compromising your health or the health of other residents in your house.

Some plants, such as Aloe Vera, can remove compounds like Benzene and Formaldehyde from the air. These could have been left behind during painting or other work done on the building. The atmosphere in energy-efficient buildings can also cause it.

If your home does not have easy access to air that can circulate within it and purify the environment, these plants can be an excellent investment. They can introduce some balance to an otherwise volatile climate.

Some ivy plants can also remove many chemical compounds that can cause respiratory infections.

Perhaps it’s time you started investing in some plants if you cannot afford air purifiers. Besides the decorative purpose and the stress relief, these plants can slowly work on improving your living conditions, adding to your life.

This is an excellent benefit in a world where smog has become all too common. Invest in plants that extend your life and avoid those that harm it.

Some great examples are listed below;

  • Succulents
  • Cacti
  • Air plants
  • Lady palm
  • Bamboo palm
  • Rubber plant
  • Dracaena
  • Some ferns
  • Some ivy plants

Make sure to research your plants and understand which ones are best for your family. Your family includes your pets. Some ferns and ivy plants can be dangerous for pets, so proceed cautiously!

Can You Be Allergic to Houseplants
Can You Be Allergic to Houseplants

Read Why are my house plant leaves drying up

Final Thoughts

“A plant needs to do more than stretch its leaves toward the sun. It also needs to send down roots deep into the ground. They hold on tightly in the dark, out of sight, where it is easy to forget them. But the fact that a plant can do these two things at once, anchoring itself to the earth even as it reaches for the sky, makes it strong.”

This quote by Cameron Dokey explains the relationship plants have with their environment. Plants have existed for far more time than humans have. We need to act and adjust accordingly.

Understanding the kinds of plants, you are allergic to should not mean throwing out those you cannot coexist with. Try to work in harmony with nature and pass on these plants to a friend who may be able to nurture them and work with them.

Plants are great investments. Understand the kinds that trigger your allergens and stay clear of them. However, the world is your oyster, and the rest of the plants are for you to choose from!

You may like the following houseplant articles: