We may be biased, but there is a lot of research around the benefits of having plants where you work and play. But don't take our word for it — just read through the list we've compiled for you.
Who knew your desk plant would turn out to be your favorite co-worker? Okay, maybe that's already the case. But now there's scientific reasoning for it.
Multiple studies have found that plants in the workspace increase both productivity and creativity. One study found that students in a campus computer lab worked 12% faster and were less stressed when plants were placed nearby.
In a 2004 study, researchers challenged people to make creative word associations. They performed better when a plant was in the room with them.
And a 2007 study showed that people with more plants in their workspace took fewer sick days and were more productive on the job.
A study published in the Journal of Physiological Anthropology found that plants in your home or office reduces physiological stress. They found that interacting with plants results in "suppression of sympathetic nervous system activity and diastolic blood pressure and promotion of comfortable, soothed, and natural feelings."
And we could all use a little less stress in our lives.
Having plants around can also increase attention and concentration — but they've gotta be live plants.
In a small study, researchers put students in a classroom with either a fake plant, a real one, a photograph of a plant, or no plant at all. Brain scans of the participants showed that the students who studied with real, live plants in the classroom were more attentive and better able to concentrate than students in the other groups.
Psychologists have used horticultural therapy to increase feelings of well-being among people with depression, anxiety, dementia, and other conditions. The therapy method includes gardening and having plants in their rooms.
In today's "always on" culture, it's important to make mental health a priority. And plants are just the beginning.
Plants may help patients heal fasster.
A 2002 review of the research revealed that people recuperating from several kinds of surgery needed less pain medication and had shorter hospital stays than people who weren’t looking at greenery during their recovery periods. This research focuses on plants and natural scenery in hospital settings.
The best job perk? Plants! No, really.
Researchers interviewed over 440 Amazon employees in India and the United States. They found that those whose office environment included natural elements like indoor plants felt greater job satisfaction and more commitment to the organization than those who didn’t work around natural elements.
Researchers said the natural elements helped to buffer the effects of job stress and anxiety.
There's quite a bit of debate on this one.
Scientific support for improved air quality most notably came from a NASA study conducted in the 1980s. Researchers then were looking for ways to improve the air quality in a sealed spacecraft, and they concluded that the roots and soil of houseplants reduced airborne volatile organic compounds significantly.
Since those early studies, researchers have both confirmed those findings and called them into question.
The TL;DR of it all is that it takes quite a few plants to really get the air quality benefits. But hey, we think it's worth the chance.
Aside from all of the science-backed health benefits of having plants in your space, they also add a modern aesthetic. Yes, indoor gardening and houseplants are trendy, but for good reason. They add a textural, natural, and comforting element to any space.
So no matter what your reasoning is for adding plants to your space, you can rest assured that science backs you up.