Office Plants and the Science Behind It

Gardening Basics
// October 11, 2018

Does your office environment feel stuffy? Adding greenery to your workspace could fix that! Office plants have a lot of benefits – they help in sharpening the focus, improve health and purify the air. A plant on your desk could remove up to 87% of toxins!

The following blog elaborates on science-backed benefits of bringing these little magicians of nature indoors:

1. Increase Humidity

Plants release about 97% of the water they take in. Place several plants together, and you can increase the humidity of a room!

Studies at the Agricultural University of Norway document that using plants in the interior spaces decreases the incidence of dry skins, cold, sore throats, and dry cough. Read about importance of humidity in indoor gardening.

2. Purify the Air

Indoor air can be about 12 times more polluted than outside air in some of the areas, due to compounds in plants, furnishings, clothing and building materials.

Plants remove upto 87% of volatile organic compounds and other toxins every 24 hours, according to NASA research. VOCs include substances like formaldehyde, benzene, and trichloroethylene.

The NASA research discovered that plants purify the trapped air by pulling contaminants into the soil, where they convert VOCs into plant food. Buy air purifying plants online.

3. Promote Health

Indoor Air Quality is a health concern, particularly in India where people may spend up to 90% of their time indoors. In a study by the Agricultural University of Norway, sickness rates fell by more than 60% in offices with plants.

4. Boost Productivity

Extensive research conducted by the Royal College of Agriculture in England revealed that the students demonstrate 70% greener attentiveness when they’re taught in rooms containing plants.

Texas A&M University conducted a study and found that employees in a room with a minimum of two potted plants and a bouquet of colorful flowers generated 13% more creative and inspiring ideas than the ones with sculptures and showpieces.

mini plants for office desk

When choosing a plant for your workspace keep the following things in mind:

  1. The plant should suit the area.
  2. Avoid high-maintenance plant.
  3. Do not bring the ones that grow quickly or need abundant sunlight.
  4. Determine light levels and office space.
  5. In a windowless office opt for fluorescent lights.

To bring a perfect plant in your office, check our list of 13 popular office plants below. They are divided into three categories: best for improving air quality, low lighting needs and easy maintenance.

1. Plants for purifying the air:

1.1 Rubber Tree Plant:

Water the Rubber Plant enough to keep the soil moist. When the plant is in its dormant stage, water it once or twice a month only. If the leaves begin to turn yellow, reduce the water supply. If the leaves start to fall, water more.

Place the plant in bright, indirect sunlight, preferably near a window with sheer curtains.

1.2 English Ivy:

This evergreen climbing vine needs moist soil. Once established, it can tolerate dry conditions too. Place it in the shade. Buy english ivy online.

1.3 Aloe Vera:

Plant Aloe in a wide container with the well-draining potting mix to prevent it from rotting. Keep the soil on a dry side and water minimal during winters. Place Aloe Vera in full sun.

1.4 Bamboo Palm:

These plants tolerate low light conditions, but grow pretty tall with more light. If your plant is healthy, it will show dark green leaves. But if the leaves begin to wilt or turn brown, modify your watering schedule. Use filtered water, at room temperature and water only when the soil surface is completely dry. Check if the water is draining properly. Place the plant in Indirect to low light.

houseplants which purifies air

2. Plants that tolerate low light conditions:

2.1 Peace Lily

This vigorous plant prefers moist soil, but it’s best to avoid overwatering. If the peace lily plant is not flowering, move the plant to a darker room. In case of excessive light, the peace lily plant will show brown leaf tips. Place your Peace Lily plant in the shade.

2.2 Parlor Palm:

Parlor Palm prefers scarce water supply. Check the soil surface before watering. Place the Parlor Palm in bright, indirect light in the early morning or late afternoon.

2.3 Snake Plant:

Since Snake Plants can rot easily, place them in well-draining soil. To prevent them from rotting, avoid overwatering especially in winters. Place your Snake Plant in indirect to low sunlight.

2.4 Boston Fern:

These thrive well in high humid conditions, hence mist them regularly. Remember that the soil requires constant moisture. Dry soil causes Boston Ferns to die. Increase humidity if the leaves begin to turn yellow. Place Boston Fern in indirect sunlight. Buy fern varieties: Green Fern Mini, Fern Morpankhi, Fern Emina.

Shade loving plants

 

3. Low maintenance plants:

3.1 Chinese Evergreen

The plant prefers warm temperature and low humidity but tolerates less ideal environment too. Chinese Evergreen plants enjoy moderate watering. Place the Chinese Evergreen plant in low to indirect light.

3.2 Philodendron

Water these plants even if the topsoil appears a little dry. Droopy leaves indicate inadequate water conditions. Pale new leaves indicate insufficient nutrition, hence feed the plant with fertilizer during spring and summer. Place the Philodendron plant in bright, indirect sunlight. Buy philodendron broken heart online.

3.4 ZZ Plant (Zamioculcas)

In case there are no or minimal windows in your office, ZZ plants are ideal as they can survive in artificial light. Water them only when the soil surface appears dry. Overwatering will kill the plant. If the plant leaves, curve, lean or turn yellow it is an indication that the light is more than needed. Place the ZZ Plant in bright to moderate indirect light.

3.5 Jade Plant

Jade plants need to be watered only when the soil surface appears completely dry. In case the plant leaves shed or turn brown, water more frequently. Place your Jade Plant in moderate light. Buy crassula ovata jade plant.

3.6 Areca Palm

These plants need specific lighting conditions. If place in the direct light, the leaves might turn yellow. Maintain soil moisture in spring and summer, and allow it to dry in fall and winter. Report every 2-3 years to get rid of soil deposits. Place Areca Palm in bright, indirect light.

interior plants

 

Sources:
Gardeningknowhow.com
Bayeradvanced.com
Healthline.com
Ambius.com

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