By: Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer
If you work at home, you may want to use plants to liven upa bland workspace. Having living plants in your home office can make days morepleasant, boost your mood, and increase your productivity. Read on forsuggestions on home office plants to consider.
Choosing plants for workspaces in your home is similar tothat of any houseplant you have.
Consider growing conditions, such as available light andspace, when choosing houseplants for a home office. Generally, plantsfor workspaces are relatively compact, but in the home nearly anything goes.Most require little care and tolerate occasional neglect.
Here are a few suggestions for home office space plants.
These, of course, are merely suggestions. Depending on youravailable space, indoor conditions, and personal preferences, you could eveninclude a potted tree or other large floor plant, like citrus,rubbertree plant, parlorpalm and dracaena.
If light is limited, you may want to invest in a smalldesktop grow light. (Some even plug into the USB port on your computer).
Most home office plants benefit from light feeding duringspring and summer. If you’re busy or forgetful, a slow-releasefertilizer will provide nutrients gradually for three months or more,depending on the type.
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Office greenery and workplace happiness and productivity go together because of our appreciation for nature, the power of attention stimuli, and—according to one thought leader—the “friendships” we form with living things.
Biophilic design holds that natural environments evoke in humans a different response than urban environments. They give us a sense of being away feeling relaxed, tranquil, and simply existing. And when introduced to sterile environments, natural elements can help in mental recovery and stress relief.
In an extensive literature review, Kaitlyn Gillis and Birgitta Gatersleben of the UK’s University of Sussex link indoor plants to stress reduction and pain tolerance. “Plants have the ability to directly bring green, living nature into the indoor environment,” their report states. “Psychological studies have demonstrated the health and wellbeing benefits of placing plants inside.”
The researchers cite a handful of studies, including breakthrough research by Roger Ulrich in 1991 that found hospital patients with views of the outdoors require less pain medication than those who are unable to connect with nature.
WeWork Ocean Gate Minatomirai in Yokohama.
Researchers from the University of Michigan suggest urban environments are brimming with “dramatic stimuli,” or distractions that require urgent, directed attention to avoid, say, being hit by a bus. Certainly, receiving an urgent request or an email that requires an immediate reply is less dramatic than being hit by a bus, but the stimuli is similarly immediate and “top-down.”
This is different in nature, which is “filled with intriguing stimuli that modestly grabs attention in a bottom-up fashion,” the researchers say, adding natural environments can help “replenish” our capacity for attention and focus. Something as simple as viewing pictures of nature can make a difference, the researchers found imagine what a wall garden might achieve?
Taking the stage at a TEDxWhiteRock thought-leadership conference, Canadian engineer Mike Robinson shared a novel approach that uses desk plants to boost employees’ personal accountability. Instead of simply giving each employee a desk plant or dressing the office in greenery, Robinson asked his team to choose their desk plants and make their decisions based on the feelings of the plant.
“So you have to put yourself in the spot of the plant, as it were, and say, ‘Which person do I want to be my new friend?'” he says. This encourages ownership and heightens a sense of accountability. The results? Robinson’s empirical observations suggest employees are working more efficiently since choosing their “plant friend,” and he says no plant has died in five years.
WeWork 383 George St in Sydney.
Though many articles (and plant retailers) suggest the benefits of indoor plants extend to “purifying the air,” this is likely not the case in a standard office.
These claims are based on 1989 research by NASA scientist Bill Wolverton that did declare plants to be a “promising economic solution to indoor air pollution.” However, this experiment was conducted in an airtight laboratory with the aim of determining whether plants would benefit humans in closed environments in space.
“It’s such an alluring and enticing idea,” Elliott Gall at Portland State University tells The Atlantic. “But the scientific literature shows that indoor houseplants—as would be typically implemented—do very little to clean the air.”
The perception of air quality improves with office greenery, however. And perhaps in workplaces—where employees should feel happy, energized, and engaged—that’s also an important result.
Patch Plants have a great range of indoor and outdoor plants, and while more pricey than your average garden centre, the plants are amusingly given human names like Ben and Susie. Their specific qualities, needs and caring instructions are listed.
Bunches may not be as well known as Patch nor is their selection of house plants as vast, but the plants are generally cheaper and come in beautiful pots, so no need to spend extra on the planters.
The Nunhead Gardener is a dreamy urban jungle and its two shops in south London are a must-visit for any local resident.
Good old IKEA has a strong selection of plants, flowers, pots and growing accessories.
Freddie's Flowers are a nationwide flower delivery service. Each box of flowers, which you assemble yourself (very therapeutic!) costs £25 and lasts for around two to three weeks - not bad value at all.
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