Biophilia in the home

Biophilia in the home

Apparently, we’ve all gone potty for plants during Covid.

The Royal Horticultural Society has reported an 80% increase in sales of foliage and houseplants in 2020! in the UK and it’s a thing the world over - there are over 12million #plantsofinstagram posts on Instagram, sharing lovely images, giving tips, asking for advice and quite frankly, just creating some really feelgood content.

It’s not surprising: as more of us were made to work from home and kept indoors during lockdowns, we naturally turned to ways that we could easily upgrade our homes.

And to be honest, when it comes to the home, biophilia should be at the forefront of any fitout, pandemic or no pandemic.

The term biophilia was first created in the 1980s, when American biologist Edward O Wilson first observed that, “increasing rates of urbanisation were leading to a disconnection with the natural world.” Plants are something that we turn towards, to help us reflect the outdoors in our homes – and they look great – but they are important for other reasons too.

Physical wellbeing
Plants are good for us. They help reduce pollutants and improve the air quality within a home. They are a key factor in creating a healthy space: research by NASA has shown that plants can remove almost 90% of air toxins in 24 hours.

Mental wellbeing
Studies have shown that landscaping and plants can contribute towards people’s feelings. MIND UK advises that spending time in green spaces or around nature can improve a person’s mood, reduce stress and improve confidence.

Good news if you are still working from home, as a happy worker is a better worker: research by Exeter University showed that workers were 15% more productive when workspaces were filled with plants.

When taken further, biophilic interior design follows nature even more. As well as using plants wherever possible, it adapts lighting and temperature to follow the arc of the sun, mimicking its journey throughout the day to maximise our energy by complementing our bodies’ circadian cycles. Artwork and furniture designs can therefore reflect nature, water features can add to this and natural materials such as wood, stone and cork can contribute. If you have a large open plan space in your home, try to arrange the seating, to naturally lead to a ‘horizon’, to subliminally reflect the outdoors. Large windows and fresh air are key.

The Office of National Statistics has revealed that almost half the population say they are spending more time outside since COVID and 42% of adults agree that, “nature and wildlife is more important than ever to my wellbeing.” So it’s good to incorporate the comforts of nature into our homes.

It’s more than just aesthetics. It’s a quick and easy, cost-effective way to create a better- looking home - one which could benefit your wellbeing for the long-term.