Being Around Plants Improves Happiness, Study Finds
Over lockdown, many of us looked towards house plants to create a sense of peace and tranquillity.
Aside from simply making our working from home spaces look a little more beautiful, it would appear that house plants can have a truly positive effect on our lives, boosting happiness and productivity.
Conducted by The Joy Of Plants to mark the launch of the Houseplant Hideout at Shoreditch BOXPARK, a recent study of 2,000 adults determined what the optimum working environment should look like.
Plant lovers won’t be surprised at all to learn that this ideal setting should involve a good plant selection (40%), plenty of bright colours (32%) and – music to my ears – pleasingly decorative stationery (27%).
Meanwhile, it was discovered that more than two-thirds of participants believed plants positively impacted their mental health.
Expert botanist and garden designer James Wong has revealed that being surrounded by plants can indeed boost your mood and wellbeing on account of the green, leafy colour. This deceptively simple addition to your home can apparently calm stress, reduce pain and even improve feelings of self-worth.
According to Wong, concentrating on and nurturing a living, growing thing is all tied in with mindfulness, helping to alleviate the sort of gnawing tension and anxiety that can drag so many of us down day-to-day.
As a botanist, I am fascinated by the growing body of scientific evidence which supports what this new consumer research highlights – that being around plants can measurably improve both mental and physical health.
The effect of houseplants seems to work on a number of inter-related levels and the best thing is that the only side effect of this therapy is having a beautiful home.
This study found that three quarters of adults possess an average of five houseplants, the reasons being because they find them calming (45%), like the way they add colour (44%) and enjoy the improved quality of indoor air (39%).
It was also discovered that an additional 36% found that the presence of plants brought them joy. A further 34% found them to have therapeutic powers, while 25% reported that their stress levels were reduced as a result.
Over the course of 2020, a year when many of us were stuck indoors casting a critical eye over our homes, the demand for succulents skyrocketed, with some UK plant retailers seeing as much as a 500% sales increase since the start of the pandemic.
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