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The case for biophilic design
Expansive empirical, psychological, and physiological evidence shows that the simple addition of greenery in workplaces- and even home or remote offices too- has positive benefits for the employees and people that work within them. The addition of plants in your working environment could be the cost-effective and environmentally friendly mood-boosting office refurbishment you were after- without the costly interior designer fee.
Without a doubt, humans respond positively to the natural environment, both aesthetically and affectively. The introduction of biophilic design- plants to previously plant-absent workspaces in numerous studies demonstrated significant reductions in tension and hostility, fatigue, ill-health as well as increased memory retention in small sample groups when every employee could see a plant from their desk. Additionally, workplaces incorporating biophilic design are more attractive to job applicants and can make current employees feel more relaxed.
Plants also offer a functional role in the office space by absorbing sounds, carbon dioxide, and other chemicals to make the air clearer for humans to breathe- so much so that a study found that the introduction of plants to an office environments reduced carbon dioxide levels by 10% in air-conditioned offices, and by 25% in non-air-conditioned workspaces.
So, how can we add plants to our office?
Sometimes it is not as simple as scattering a handful of pot plants around the office. Particularly for corporate environments or very small workspaces, large pots and hanging plants may take away from overall company aesthetic or take up space that may have not been available in the first place.