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Why use plants in interior design?

26 April 2021

Why use plants in interior design?

Why use plants in interior design?

Biophilic meaning

One of the top interior design trends of 2021 is biophilic design. This is a concept used within the building and interior design industry to increase occupant connectivity to the natural environment using direct nature, space and place conditions. So why is this trend so popular and why should you consider it when creating a design?

Why incorporate Biophilic interior design?

Most of us spend a great deal of time interacting in a virtual environment involving digital technology such as computers, smart phones and tablets. This often occurs in offices, filled with artificial lighting, synthetic furniture and recycled air, pumped in through air conditioning. The environments we have become accustomed to are a world away from nature and the great outdoors. Nature has been proven to reduce anger, fear and stress, all while increasing pleasant feelings. It contributes to physical wellbeing, reducing heart rate, blood pressure, stress hormones and muscle tension. There is no wonder why current working generations have increased levels of anxiety and mental health issues, including depression. There is a growing body of research from heath experts and researchers showing that nature also reduces feeling of isolation, promotes calmness and lifts moods. Also known as Ecopsychology, the mental effects of nature on us are unparalleled.

These remarkable findings are being utilized in indoor designs to create positive wellbeing spaces in our homes.

The benefits in the home include:

  • Thermal comfort level assistance
  • Air quality
  • Aesthetic environment

How can you incorporate biophilic design?

Not all biophilic designs have to include a full wall of living foliage. Incorporating biophilic design into your interior designs is a lot more achievable than you may think. Living plants can be expensive to install and maintain, requiring watering and pruning. Small plants and printed wallpaper all come under the biophilic umbrella and can also instate the benefits of biophilic design without the hassle. Having small plants on a desk or a potted plant in a living room can all help bring elements of nature indoors. Large windows that look onto the outdoors also constitute a biophilic design as it enables the outside to become inside. Large windows let in natural light, which has been proven to help regulate people’s circadian rhythms which in turn promotes wellbeing. Natural light also wards off seasonal depression, reduces the health risks of florescent lighting and boosts vitamin D. In order to incorporate anything into your interior design, space planning is essential. You can learn more about space planning in module 5 of our course. Need inspiration? Take a look at some of these biophilic design concepts.

Why use plants in interior design?

Location: Madrid, Selgas Cano office

Architect: Selgas Cano office

This extreme example of biophilic design really brings the outside in. The large window allows the office to function on full natural light and lets the occupants be fully emersed in nature. This office is as close to nature as physically possible.

Why use plants in interior design?

Location: Tokyo, Pasona Group offices

Designers: Kono Designers

This office in Tokyo has incorporated plants throughout its design in the form of an office ‘farm’. Using both hydroponic and soil-based farming, the design puts crops and office workers in a common space. For example, tomato vines are suspended above conference tables, lemon and passion fruit trees are used as partitions for meeting spaces, salad leaves are grown inside seminar rooms and bean sprouts are grown under benches. The design not only adds the benefits of plants to this office but provides a team building activity by getting employees to work together to look after plants and it also provides satisfaction through the produce the plants provide.

Why use plants in interior design? Pic. Credit: Katty Kuo Home

Don’t be scared of using larger plants. This elephant’s ear plant offers a great option for larger spaces such as lofts, apartments with tall ceilings, balconies and offices. The green in these large leaves also provides a pop of natural color to an interior which can be complemented by any wall color.

Why use plants in interior design? Pic. Credit: Landscapingdubai.com

This small foliage wall helps soften the architectural elements of this design. Natural material provides textures and forms that are challenging to recreate, and when it comes to quality there is no substitute to the real thing. Although artificial plants add a similar effect to natural plants, they don’t have all the benefits.

Plants and foliage can soften harsh lines and add dimension to an interior design, all while adding color. When it comes to decorating with plants, the possibilities are only as limited as the mind of the designer! Living plants are great decorative home accents, and when used properly, they can even become key design elements on their own.

So the next time you see an unused corner, empty wall, or lonely shelf in your home, consider bringing it to life with a decorative plant.