As was discussed in part 1 of this series on office plants, there are several reasons it is a good idea to include live plants in your commercial office spaces. Yes, artificial plants look attractive, but they do not provide the clean air and feel of nature that live plants do. So, what kind of plants will work best inside and sometimes in areas with no windows? Here are some of the most popular and easiest to care for:
Spider plant: a hanging plant that is easy to care for and fun to watch as more and more “babies” grow along with the drooping stems. These spiders are green and won’t harm anyone but are nice to have around.
Boston fern: this favorite is lush green with thick foliage of feather-like tendrils. Great for larger areas. They do require some maintenance as they must be kept moist. Sufficient lighting is also required.
Birds nest fern: needs to be watered only once every two weeks and likes low light. The fonds on this fern are crinkled and very attractive to look at.
Peace lily: is noted for keeping the air clean. It grows quickly and requires only low light.
African violet: one of the favorites for indoor plants as the blooms come in several shades of violet and pink and white. These plants are relatively small in size, so they are nice to place on a worker’s desk or workstation. They need plenty of light (Eastern exposure is the best) and moisture, but folks enjoy taking care of their “own” flowering plant.
Cactus plants: a long-time favorite are easy to care for, so make good office plants. There are many types of cactus to choose from, and often several varieties are arranged together for an interesting mini garden. Cactus requires little moisture and does not do well if watered too frequently.
English Ivy: has been around for a long time. Its delicate dark green leaves that hang over its container or climbing up a pole add lovely decoration to a space. This plant needs little light. And, interestingly, English Ivy is noted for helping to eliminate mold.
Modern bamboo is a fair newcomer to indoor plants. Its twisted stem is attractively topped with green bamboo shoots. The plant needs indirect and moderate light and should be watered when the soil is dry to the touch.
Snake plant: few folks like snakes, but this plant, sometimes called mother-in-law’s tongue, has snake-like or fork-like leaves which grow quite tall. Sometimes used for a screen in an office setting, it is easy to care for.
Philodendrons: these plants are one of the most popular and easiest to grow inside. Their shiny green leaves hang over the container or can be trained to climb across an area such as a windowsill. They take little maintenance or light and can even survive being left alone for several days.
ZZ plant: if you are looking for a tall, in-the-corner plant, these work well. The wavy green foliage grows to 28 inches tall—water when soil is dry and place in a low light area.
Rubber plant: known for removing indoor pollutants, these plants with their large, waxy leaves are attractive in any office. Regular watering is needed, and some light is beneficial.
Monstera: sometimes known as the Swiss cheese plant because its large leaves have a cut-like appearance, this office plant is ideal for a large floor space to fill. The plant grows wide and tall in little light. It is a low moisture plant requiring infrequent watering.
The plants mentioned in this blog are just a few of the most popular and easiest to care for in an office setting. For more varieties, you can go online and read about many others. The important thing to remember when considering plants for your office is the amount of lighting available and the willingness of employees to help care for the plants. It is also important to be sure no one in the office is allergic to any varieties you select.