Recently house plants have skyrocketed in popularity, finding homes in kitchens, living rooms, offices, and our hearts. Although indoor plants may be Instagram-worthy, the biggest reason for the growing trend is the power of plants themselves.
As human beings, we have an innate need to coexist with living things. The term “Biophilia” was coined by social psychologist Erich Fromm to describe our love for life and lifeforms of all types around us. Biologist, researcher, and naturalist E.O Wilson took Fromm’s research one step further and discovered that being in nature can change our emotions and behaviors. But perhaps the most surprising discovery in the research of biophilia is the power plants have on our wellbeing.
Interior Plants: Improving Health & Happiness in the Workplace
Although urban planners understand the power of green spaces, many interior designers and office managers have yet to discover the power of plants. “Sick building syndrome” (SBS) is used to describe the negative comfort and health effects of a building—the effects we can all understand when we think about sitting at a desk with gray walls and fluorescent lighting. The symptoms of SBS can range anywhere from headaches and fatigue to eye, nose, and throat irritation, dizziness, nausea, and more. Not only is this a bad environment for people to work in, but the work they do also suffers. Enter plants.
Adding interior plants to a space can decrease SBS by 25%! But that isn’t all plants can do. According to research from the non-profit Green Plants for Green Buildings, plants in the workplace can increase productivity and efficiency by 12%, improve concentration by 19%, and even help attract and retain employees and customers.
97% of employees would like to have more indoor plants in the workplace and 88% of workers say access to natural indoor elements increases their wellbeing.
But perhaps one of the biggest effects plants have on SBS is decreasing health issues. When plants are added to a space, fatigue is decreased by 20%, headaches by 30%, cough by 40%, and a sore throat by 30%.
Plants don’t just have positive effects on employees, but everyone who enters the space. An abundance of greenery and plants has a powerful impact on visitors to a space, whether they live or work there or are customers visiting for a day.
(source: Green Plants for Green Buildings)
The Power of Greenery
We are so deeply connected to color—the design of an environment can not only affect our emotions, but it can also completely alter them, which in turn can change the way we function within that space.
Because of its strong association with nature, the color green often symbolizes tranquility, health, and freshness. Green is considered to be a calming color—reinforcing our human connection to nature and our inner selves. Ultimately, green takes us to the place we are always subconsciously searching for: serenity, peace of mind, those quiet moments we cherish in our lives.
As a result, green is quite successful at helping people adjust to and feel comfortable in new environments. It also correlates with broader thinking and creativity, making green the perfect color to incorporate in hotels, schools, and any work atmosphere.
The power of plants is almost endless. So, what are you waiting for? Start incorporating plants into your space and experience their many benefits for yourself!