Sustainability – what is it and why is it important?

Sustainability is much more than a buzzword. While the use of the word has certainly increased in frequency, the concept itself is hardly new. An ecosystem, a lifestyle, or a community that is sustainable is one which supports itself and its surroundings.
Sustainability itself can be defined by three core elements:

  • Environmental Protection
  • Social Development
  • Economic Development

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Environmental Protection

Environmental protection entails examining how our use of the environment affects it, and how we can ensure that negative effects are minimised and behaviours that positively impact the environment are emphasised.

Social Development

Ensuring that human beings have access to basic resources, that their health is being protected, and that they enjoy a good quality of life within a sustainable environment is crucial.

Economic Development

Sustainability without economic development simply cannot succeed. In order to convince individuals, communities, and organisations to invest their resources in sustainability, there must be incentives above and beyond the long-term advantages.

Why is it so Important?

Sustainability is important for a very simple reason: we cannot maintain our quality of life or the Earth’s ecosystems unless we embrace it.

Sustainability in the Home

There are many different ways to support sustainability at home.

Recycle

Recycling should be something we’re all doing as a matter of course now. Recycling eases pressure on the world’s resources and the environment.

Growing Food

Giving up a portion of your garden to plant vegetables has become increasingly popular in recent years. Container gardens, which can be moved and easily swapped out, are another great choice.

Conserving Water

Choosing plants native to your area that have evolved to thrive under the naturally present conditions is one choice. You can also consider installing rain barrels, depending on your local regulations, or planting a “rain garden”—planting water-loving foliage in areas where water tends to gather, to allow it to be absorbed into the soil rather than running off into storm drains.

Use of Fertilizers, Pesticides, and Herbicides

The chemicals you use on your lawn matter, and not just to your grass. Using safer, organic alternatives can help you keep your landscaping looking lovely without polluting or endangering the ecosystem. Lawn and garden care chemicals can have lasting effects on plants, animals, and insects in your area, and can also have a negative impact on the water supply.

There are so many ways to embrace sustainability, we hope this blog has given you some ideas to get you started.


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Biophilia & other Reasons to Have Plants in the Workplace

If you’ve been reading about the buzzword Biophilia but have yet to understand what the buzz is about, then we’ve made a helpful infographic for you, designed to show you the amazing relationships that can occur between workers and plants in the modern office.

Plants truly are amazing. If you’re looking to improve your office space with some smart greenery, why not enhance your office with our office plants for hire service. Impress your workers and guests with an outstanding boardroom, ensure that they remember you as an innovative and forward-thinking company by transforming your spaces into greener, healthier, places to enjoy working in.

planteria group infographic

And if you’re interested in reading more about the joys of biophilia and the many benefits of plants, we have plenty of blogs to keep you up-to-date on the latest hints, tips and news:

   Biophilia – What is It and Why is it Important

   Indoor Air Quality: Facts & How to Improve

   The Best Plants for Your Office Environment

   Biophilic Design in the Workplace


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The Benefits of Biophilic Design in the Workplace

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Anyone with a keen eye for design will have spotted the rise of the ‘Biophilia’ design trend. Plants; they are everywhere at the moment.

Planters of succulents, shelves of spider plants and ferns, indoor hanging plants in every room, even printed wallpaper with banana leaf or palm leaf patterns. However, there is much more to this trend than just aesthetics.

plants on shelves in office

The Rise of Biophilia

The whole concept of Biophilia (The love of nature and living things) connects us to the wider world and our innate desire to protect and nurture that which feeds us and does us good, both physically and also emotionally.

One of the ‘founding fathers’ of the psychology behind biophilia was Edward O Wilson. He coined the term Biophilia and wrote the book of the same name, first published in 1984 and still widely available if you want a more in-depth read on the topic.

A synopsis of the subject and some of the research that has come out of it can be found here:  Biophilia white paper.  Another great source of information and brilliant blogs is the Human Spaces blog, and you can subscribe for free. In addition, a recent blog post of ours looked at The Three Pillars of Biophilic Design.

office wall art

 

The Benefits of Biophilia

There are many benefits to having plant displays and other biophilic elements in your work or home interior. Biophilic elements refer to anything that evokes the sense of the beauty of the natural world, such as water features, fish tanks or plants.

You can also add natural analogues which are patterns and design styles that mimic nature – think honeycomb patterns, furnishings with curved edges even artificial planting or wood-effect flooring. It’s not so much about the what, it’s more about how the inclusion of biophilic elements make people feel.

white and black office planters

 

Here are 5 benefits of Biophilic Design in the Workplace:

1. Live plants improve air-quality.

They do this by using carbon dioxide (bad for us) to produce oxygen (good for us). They also transpire through their leaves, making the air more humid, which is excellent for combating the problem of dry-air, a widely reported problem in air-conditioned offices.

Additionally, plants absorb VOCs (volatile organic compounds) such as chemicals that are widely used in domestic cleaning products, contained within some carpets and emitted from electronics. More about improving air-quality here.

 

   2. Make you more creative and (as much as 15% more) productive.

A series of studies from Exeter University concluded that employees were 15% more productive when “lean” workplaces were filled with just a few houseplants, as employees who actively engage with their surroundings are more efficient and more creative workers.

office plants in white planter

 

3. Helps relieve stress and improve mental well-being.

Stress is a known cause of both mental health disorders and cardiovascular diseases. According to the World Health Organisation mental health and cardiovascular diseases are expected to the be the two prime contributing factors to illnesses worldwide by 2020.

Studies also show that our ability to directly access nature can alleviate feelings of stress. The millions of neural channels in our brain link to the human body’s nervous system. This system is comprised of two networks: the sympathetic and the parasympathetic systems. The sympathetic system stimulates the human body when cognitive function is needed. The parasympathetic system serves to relax the body and is used for internal processes such as digestion. When the body’s natural balance of sympathetic and parasympathetic is achieved, the body is in the ideal state of homeostasis.

But in chaotic and stressful environments, like a busy office, the body’s sympathetic system is highly engaged in a “fight-or-flight” mindset. Concurrently, the parasympathetic system is suppressed, disrupting our natural balance and resulting in energy drain and mental fatigue. This combination induces stress, frustration, irritability and distraction. In contrast, human interaction with nature provides an increase in sympathetic activity. This results in decreased stress and irritability and the increased ability to concentrate.

In Japan Shirin-Yoku (Forest Bathing), the practice of mindfully spending time in the forest, using all of your senses to appreciate nature, has been proven to combat stress, enhance mental wellness and bolster brain health.

 

4. Feel happier and healthier.

Not surprisingly, biophilic elements make us feel in a more positive frame of mind.  Positive people have a positive impact on others, take better care of themselves and are healthier. Another point to consider here is that they are less likely to be off work sick, so if you are still on the fence about adding biophilic elements to your workspace, consider the impact it could have on reducing absenteeism in your office.

 

5. Attract and Retain the best talent.

 Having a thoughtfully designed, attractive workspace, full of natural light and biophilic elements, shows who you are as an organisation.  It also sends a powerful message about your social conscience and green-credibility and that you care about your colleagues.  We spend a large amount of time at work, and whilst we are there, we want it to be a positive experience.

Want to add some biophilic elements to your workspace, retail space or venue? Contact us today.


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Celebrating Butterfly Awareness Day

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The 2nd June was a cause for celebration at the beauty that is the butterfly. Every year BEAD (Butterfly Education and Awareness Day) allows you to learn all about the stunning insects and their habitats, creating a cross-curricular learning environment where you can find out various fascinating facts about the incredible creatures.

Butterflies play an important role when it comes to flowers due to their pollinating capabilities. Pollen collects on the body of the butterfly and is transferred onto the flower that it next encounters, spreading the pollen and thus continuing the cycle of pollination.

As we celebrate butterfly awareness day, find out which flowers attract the special insect, and how you may be able to attract them to your garden.

 

What Flowers Attract Butterflies?

With butterflies, you must incorporate plants that best serve the needs of all of their life stages to attract them. As is common with most animals, the insects need a space to lay eggs and also need food plants for their larvae.

Adult butterflies are attracted to bright colours such as red, yellow, orange, pink and purple blossoms. Here we have listed some of the top flowers and plants which you can use to attract butterflies:

· Buddleia

· Verbena

· Knapweed

· Ivy

· Eupatorium

· Marjoram

· Michaelmas Daisy

· Lavender

· Scabious

· Hebe

Find out more about these plants and what species of butterfly they attract here.

 

How to Attract Butterflies to Your Garden

Butterflies are a beautiful and welcome visitor to any garden, however, in recent years some species have seen a decline. Many ask the question; how do you attract butterflies to your garden? Here at Planteria Group, we have the answers.

One of the main elements that will attract butterflies to your garden is planting pollinator friendly flowers. Ones rich in nectar, such as wildflowers, are a great choice.

Why not create a butterfly garden? This will provide the resources to sustain resident breeding populations of native butterflies. Take a look at the top 10 plants for butterflies..

If you are a lover of butterflies, you can transform your space into a butterfly garden with these easy steps:

· Avoid insecticides.

· Plant nectar rich flowers, such as bramble.

· Keep nectar and host plants close together.

 

Celebrate National Insect Week

18th – 24th June hosts National Insect Week, an event which aims to educate and raise awareness, by encouraging people of all ages to learn more fascinating information about insects. This fun filled week sees hundreds of events and activities across the UK, giving you the chance to discover insects you might not have known existed. It also gives you the opportunity the meet the entomologists who study them, answering any curious question you might have.

The week is supported by a large number of partner organisations who are interested in science, natural history and the conservation of insects, helping to reach a wide audience and create maximum interest for those who attend.

One of the partner organisations is the Butterfly Conservation, whose aim is to save butterflies and moths. Through their work, they have been able to raise awareness about the decline in numbers that many species of butterflies and moths are currently experiencing.

Butterflies are a beautiful part of nature, playing an important role in pollinating flowers. Will you be celebrating National Insect Week? As a specialist in plants and flowers for business, we offer a range of plants and we can help you turn your outside areas into butterfly attraction zones giving you an eco-friendly space that can be enjoyed by your colleagues and the local butterfly population.

If you would like to find out more about our services, contact a member of the team today by calling 0345 505 333. Alternatively, email enquiries@planteriagroup.com with any enquiries – our friendly team will be more than happy to help.


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World FM Day 2018: Enabling Positive Experiences

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It’s #WorldFMDay – Hurrah! We’re joining in the celebrations and recognition of Facilities Management (FM) people and projects that enable positive experiences. Some of our biggest clients are FM companies and BIFM members, so we know a thing or two about helping get things right for you and your clients.

In today’s world our cities are so built up and our environments often claustrophobic and bland so it’s more important than ever that we work together to create welcoming, feel-good spaces to enable businesses (and people) to thrive.

What could be more suitable than floristry and green planting to bring positive changes to the built environment?   Planteria Group has 40 years of experience working with FM companies providing planting and floristry services to suit your budget.  Even if you’re already working with another planting provider, we’re confident we can go above and beyond to meet your requirements.  If you’re considering us, why not request a no-obligation free quote?

 

5 Positive Benefits of Planting for the Built Environment:

1) Soften the interior and/or exterior of your business, providing psychological benefits such as positive effects on reducing stress and promoting health and well-being. As humans we have an innate desire to be connected to nature, also known as biophilia, and it seems we have lost much of this ability to be in the natural world as our cities and work environments have become absorbed by the concrete jungle. By adding a variety of plants and flowers for businesses we suddenly bring back a part of the nature that we crave.

2) Increase productivity, creativity and happiness. It is proven that a vibrant, welcoming environment has positive effects on the speed at which we work and improves mood. Studies show that employees who are exposed to plants within the workplace, actively engage with their surroundings, are more productive and have a more positive outlook at work.

3) Make spaces more welcoming and inviting for employees, visitors and clients. Having a space that is pleasant to be in and beckons to visitors has a positive effect on businesses and improves perception of their image. Plants and flowers bring life to a space and boosts eco-credentials too.

4) Improve air quality and reduce allergens by cleansing the air. As shown in NASA’s Clean Air Study, plants provide a natural way of removing toxins from the air and also reduces the presence of aggravating allergens. NASA researchers suggest efficient air cleaning is accomplished with at least one plant per 100 square feet of home or office space.

5) Reduce sickness and absence at work. Combining all of the points above results in reduced illness and time away from work, increasing the overall effectiveness of businesses and staff wellbeing. One of the most common illnesses in today’s workplace is Sick Building Syndrome which is often linked to poor air quality and indoor air circulation which can easily be combated with a variety of planting solutions.

A recent Norwegian research study tested what happened when plants were placed into and then removed from offices. When plants were present headaches, coughs, sore throats, fatigue and dry skin all reduced. Several similar studies around the world have found similar results:

  • Absenteeism reduced by 30%+
  • Minor illnesses reduced by up to 30%
  • Dry skin reduced by up to 20%
  • Coughing reduced by up 37% due to improved air quality

Interested in how we can offer similar improvements for you?

Have a look at some of our Creative Planting Innovations & our Nationwide Orchid Delivery Service.

Contact Us Today or Request a Free Online Quote.

Follow us on LinkedIn and Facebook for regular updates, inspiration and case studies.


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Hotel Flowers Fit for A Royal Wedding

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19th May is a day the world will be paying attention to, as the highly anticipated Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle commences.

As a provider of corporate floristry solutions, Planteria Group offer a plethora of flower options for hotels and commercial environments that are fit for a Royal wedding!

hotel lobby desk with bright green square vase and an arrangement of lily plants

 

Why Flowers Are Essential Elements

Studies have shown flowers have a huge effect on an individual’s mood, impacting their happiness and providing long-term effects of self-satisfaction. Without us even realising, flowers have a greater impact than we think, proving they are an essential element of an interior design for numerous commercial buildings.

Hotels are part of a huge industry used every day, providing a service for those in need of accommodation for short periods of time. Flowers provide a touch of luxury for any hotel, making an impactful first impression.

Flowers have the power to trigger happy memories and the scent a beautiful bouquet produces can create a sense of fondness in many guests.

Our flowers for hotels cater to traditional, contemporary, classic or exotic designs. Our professionalism ensures we draw on a wealth of creativity, dedicated to help you plan stunning flower displays.

 

Hotel Flower Ideas for You

When it comes to choosing the right flowers for your hotel, the choice may feel overwhelming or confusing with the wide range of options available. This is where we can help. We buy seasonal flowers direct from the grower and can advise on the best choices available for your particular décor to help you choose the perfect one’s for you.

 

1. Calla Lily

The Calla Lily comes from the Greek word that signifies beauty, yet there is more to them than their stunning appearance. These beautiful flowers have become symbols of youth and rebirth. Commonly white, the Calla Lily may also come in a variety of colours including yellow, pink, green, purple, orange and black.

 

2. Proteas

Proteas are exotic flowers native to South Africa which are used in all seasons. This beautiful, and unusual flower is ideal for both large statement flowers or minimalist bouquets, allowing you to create an extravagant arrangement for your hotel.

 

3. Tropical Flowers

Tropical flowers are truly special, they are bold, striking and bright and can be used to create large, structural displays. Coming in an array of colours, these can be the perfect fit for any hotel interior.

 

Bespoke Flower Service

We offer a wide variety of different vase styles, which allows us to provide something fresh, inspirational and unique each time. Our flowers are sourced direct from the grower, ensuring our arrangements stay perfect for a long time.

We provide regular floristry for high end hotels. Here are just a few of the hotels we have worked with:

There are so many flower options when it comes to the finishing touches for your hotel. Our floristry service is available exclusively in Central London.  If you’re looking for elegant hotel flowers, we can help you.

Get in touch with a friendly member of our team today by calling 0345 505 3333 or emailing enquiries@planteriagroup.com.


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An Exclusive Look at Contemporary Office Flower Arrangements

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When considering flower displays and office flowers, there are a number of factors to keep in mind.

Colour, scent and size of your flowers are just some of these factors, and all of these can easily contribute to a healthier and happier working environment.

Plants adorning contemporary office waiting area

 

The Benefits of Having Flowers in Your Office Space

As discussed in our recent blog post, 10 Tips for Workplace Wellness, utilising flowers and plants in the office increases productivity, reduces stress and provides cleaner air, helping your employees to have a more comfortable day at work.

Flowers and plants are visually stimulating, encouraging reduced stress levels in the individual, whilst also creating a welcoming environment for any visitors which you may have to your office.

Biophilia, which is the science behind the need to align ourselves with nature, is gaining recognition, and with it’s intrinsic ‘feel-good’ benefits having a positive impact on people in the workplace, it is clear to see why.

Having flower and plant arrangements provided by Planteria is an easy way to accomplish this.

 

Keeping Flowers on Trend

We recognise the importance of keeping flowers and plants in line with seasonal demands.

Just as in a good restaurant you’d expect to find the freshest, seasonal produce, you’d expect any good florist to have an innate understanding of the seasonality and quality of flower varieties.

This idea influences all of our corporate flower arrangements, where fresh, original and seasonal flowers are used consistently throughout the year, providing only the best flowers and plants for a stunning contemporary arrangement.

 

Contemporary Arrangements

Today’s, arrangements tend to have fewer restrictions and vary depending on the time of year and the environment in which they are going to be situated in. For an office, examples of case studies show the difference that our flower arrangements can make to your company.

If you are working with a large amount of space, it might be worthwhile looking at the possibility of Planteria’s office plants service rather than flower arrangements. Due to their standard larger size, plants are perfect to optimise space when you think a pop of natural colour is needed.

We can offer assistance and suggestions of different planters and colour schemes too, ensuring that your plants look brilliant amidst the daily routines of your company. If physical space is limited, or a greater assortment of colour is required, opting for bright and bold flower arrangements might be more beneficial (and noticeable!).

As is common with any contemporary flower arrangement, the traditional rules do not apply. Contemporary arrangements are brighter, bolder in form, there is no size restriction, other than budget allows, and no set patterns are to be expected.

Symmetrical balance is emphasised, creating an even arrangement which is pleasing to the eye, and any part of the design may be the dominant focal point.

Take a look at how colourful office plants and contemporary corporate flower arrangements can improve the look of your office:

Plants adorning contemporary office waiting area

The options are endless when it comes to Planteria’s flowers for offices and, in such an important environment, with several health and work benefits included, the answer is clear.

Contact our friendly team of experts today by calling 0345 505 3333 or emailing enquiries@planteriagroup.com.


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The Three Pillars of Biophilic Design

 

Living Ceiling

Biophilia is a current buzzword in the world of well-being and workplace design. Planteria Group has written a White Paper on the subject, and there are lots of excellent in-depth pieces of work backed by research if you want to discover all aspects of this fascinating topic.

This blog article serves as a bite-sized look at one of the aspects of Biophilia…. the different types of Biophilic Models that exist.

There are three pillar concepts to biophilia-based design.

 

1. Nature in The Space

This refers to adding natural elements into the built environment. This is perhaps the easiest and cheapest way to introduce Biophilia to the workplace or living space and gives people instant access to all the feelgood associations of biophilia. Think potted plants and animals – for example fish tanks, office dogs and pets. Views to nature from the inside of the building, natural light, and direct access to nature like courtyards, gardens and roof terraces planted with greenery, also fall into this category. These direct connections to nature have the strongest impact on us as humans.

 

2. Natural Analogues

This concept refers to man-made elements that mimic nature. Artificial plants, preserved moss walls, representational artwork, patterns and architecture that evoke nature are all examples of natural analogues. Furniture with organic rather than geometric shapes. Woodgrain and building materials mimicking shells and leaves used in interior of exterior decoration are all excellent illustrations of the use of natural analogues.

Many benefits can be reaped from including natural analogues into a space, including reduced stress levels increased feelings of well-being and improved levels of productivity.

 

3. Nature of the Space

This concept refers to the physiological way in which space planning and architectural design affect our human responses and feelings. As a species we have evolved over millennia and our success is partially due to our ability to connect with nature. We are intuitively drawn to environments that will serve us and allow us to thrive or, entice us to explore. For this reason we find a Savannah landscape, with broad vistas of rolling pastures and a source of water such as lakes or a view of the sea to be the most attractive view.

We also find views involving mystery or even risk and peril as exciting, this explains our love of skyscrapers, and multilevel views such as mezzanines, atriums and spiral staircase as intriguing. Architects have capitalised on our innate affinity for these types of environments in their building designs.

Gaining more knowledge and insight into this subject is helping decision makers in the world of workplace management, design and build for happier and healthier businesses of the future.

 

Sources and Suggested Reading:

The Economics of Biophilia – Why Designing with Nature in Mind Makes Financial Sense. 2012 Terrapin Bright Green LLC

https://www.terrapinbrightgreen.com/reports/the-economics-of-biophilia/

Biophilia (1984) New Ed by EO Wilson (ISBN: 9780674074422)

Human Spaces: http://humanspaces.com/

Planteria Group Biophilia white paper:

https://www.planteriagroup.com/blog/biophilia-white-paper-/29

Kellert et al., 2008

Biederman & Vessel, 2006

https://www.terrapinbrightgreen.com/reports/14-patterns/

Edward O Wilson – “Biophilia”


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Women in Facilities Management – Planteria’s Plant Technicians

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International Women’s Day is annually held on March 8 to celebrate women’s achievements throughout history and across nations. So how is our industry doing in terms of inclusion of women? Planteria has been in operation for over 40 years, and our first female technician joined the workforce in 2013. Women now make up 33% of the technician workforce. I caught up with three of our plant technicians Catie Scott, Carol Nelson and Laura Kearsey to hear their views and insights on working in the Facilities Management and Horticultural industry, to find out what changes they have seen over the past few years and what they think about their role.

Carol has been working in the horticultural industry since 1992 and has been a technician for almost 20 years. What she most enjoys about her job is the freedom and the travel “ I love the freedom and responsibility, it’s my job to keep the customer happy and get the best out of the plant displays. I feel supported and encouraged by Planteria, it makes me want to do my best. I feel a valued member of the team and I’m proud to work with a company with such honesty and integrity “ says Carol. “My training has been gained on the job and through experience”. Carol has worked for several planting companies and in her experience has found more women in this industry than men. She has found that men have tended to do more of the large-scale jobs for example shopping centres, ladder work, fixtures and trees. But, she has been instrumental in changing this, involving more women in doing the outside work including fixture beds and training on tree loppers etc.

Laura Kearsey started working as a technician 15 years ago in a garden centre and training was on the job shadowing watching and wanting to know more. In her opinion, she has found that men and women have been always treated equally working in this field. She has faced no barriers to her role from being female the only comment is that the uniform manufacturer should make a female uniform cut.

Laura says “I think women are expected to do a more hands-on role now, so the future can only get better for us all. What I like most about my job is that happy feeling I get at the end of each day, knowing I’ve made a difference to the environment for hundreds of office workers, even though most probably don’t realise how important plants are to them. Each day is different, meeting new people and visiting different sites, variety is the key”.

Catie Scott joined Planteria six months ago. She started her career in horticulture three years ago at a large independent garden centre. Catie has a BA degree in Fine Art and Sculpture and went on to complete a professional floristry course in New York, her passion for plants and flowers has grown since then. Catie says “I have experienced some clients commenting on the fact that I am a woman as they are so used to seeing men doing this job. I don’t think I have faced any barriers in this role because of my gender, I am a confident person and feel strongly about gender equality not just in this job but in life general, so I tend to carry myself with strength. I have had occasional varying comments, and looks which I have struck off, it’s not an issue which I take seriously enough to worry about. I think times are changing and equality between men and women is becoming more and more important, so I can only see things improving in regard to that. What I like most about my job is a sense of empowerment and responsibility. I love being in charge of my own sites and dealing with clients directly. The level of knowledge I have about plants is a huge plus for me in terms of that sense of responsibility, as I am confident to speak with people about what I am doing for their sites and why. I also love to be out and about, every day is different and that definitely keep things interesting for me”.

By Katie Le Chevalier

With thanks to Carol Nelson, Laura Kersey and Catie Scott.


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Planteria Group Growing Staff

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Introducing two of our newest employees at Planteria Group: Bronwyn Anderson and Casey Gill.

Please join us in welcoming them to our growing team! To get to know Bronwyn and Casey a bit better, we asked a few questions and we’ve included their answers below.

 

Bronwyn Anderson:

Bronwyn’s role at Planteria Group is Executive Assistant and she joined our team in March 2017.

Q: What is your home town?

A: Buckhurst Hill

 

Q: What are 3 things people might not know about you?

A: 1) I wear Versace perfume

2) I love playing volleyball!

3) Worst food: peas!

 

Q: What is your favourite plant?

A: Ficus Ginseng

 

Q: What are your favourite flowers?

A: Hydrangeas

 

Q: What is your favourite thing so far about working at Planteria Group?

A: There is a good work ethic and culture!

 

Casey Gill:

Casey has also been with Planteria Group since March 2017 in her role as Social Media Coordinator.

Q: What is your home town?

A: Houston, Texas

 

Q: What are 3 things people might not know about you?

A: 1) I’ve lived in 3 different countries, including the United Arab Emirates.

2) I’m a certified yoga teacher and run a small yoga studio nearby.

3) Favourite colour: green! How fitting!

 

Q: What is your favourite plant?

A: Anything to do with succulents! I love all different types of succulents for their unique shapes and easy-care.

 

Q: What are your favourite flowers?

A: Lilies – particularly Stagazer Lilies for their gorgeous colour and powerful fragrance.

 

Q: What is your favourite thing so far about working at Planteria Group?

A: Everyone is so friendly and there is a great atmosphere in the office, it’s also a pleasure being surrounded by so much greenery!

 

Thanks Bronwyn and Casey! Welcome to our family.

Our team is growing like a Kentia Palm (aka: Big Ken) and we are proud of our core values.  If you are interested in a career with Planteria Group, please see our job openings and apply within.


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Biophilic Design in The Workplace – What’s it all about?

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As the design of the workplace evolves through various trends, from cellular office environments to open plan spaces and then the rise of agile working spaces, the rising trend of biophilic design has been hard to ignore.

 

What is Biophilic Design?

Biophilic design is essentially a design framework that intertwines the patterns of nature into the built environment, strengthening the human-nature connection. What makes this work is the effective incorporation of natural elements such as stone, wood, living green walls, water features, and plants into the interior environment.

Apart from the inclusion of natural materials, biophilic design also incorporates the use of natural lighting to help people maintain a natural circadian rhythm, access to fresh air through high quality HVAC systems and an overall design that encourages movement, such as stairs to keep people active and mobile.

Roof terrace area with ratten furniture, artificial grass and two tree style plants.

 

Why is Biophilic Design so Effective?

When all the features of biophilic design are combined correctly, what is created is a workplace that optimises employee performance, health and wellbeing, helping organisations reach peak physical and mental performance. Through our innate desire to protect and nurture that which feeds us and sustains us physically and emotionally, we instinctively connect with natural features such as plants, fresh air and water.

Whilst this may seem a financial luxury given the pressures on most organisations, economic reasons are actually one of the key drivers for the growing biophilic trend. As organisations become more aware of the value of investing in employee health, wellbeing and performance, the value of creating a workplace which fosters and improves this is seen as a sound economic policy.

Open plant office with bright yellow desk dividers and tree style plants potted around the room edges

 

Why is Biophilic Design Relevant?

Biophilic design is changing the way we work and has been a key feature in workspaces from workplace design pioneers such as GoogleAmazonApple and many others across the world. The focus in creating the best workplaces is also to do with attracting and retaining key talent and these companies realise that by investing in this area, they will be successful in attracting the top workforce and maximising creativity within that workforce.

With the World Health Organisation expecting stress related illness such as mental health disorders and cardiovascular disease to be the two largest contributors to disease by 2020, the onus is on creating spaces where worker wellbeing flourishes. Numerous studies have been shown to demonstrate that by incorporating elements of nature through biophilic design into the workspace, stress levels and ill health absenteeism can be reduced whilst productivity, creativity and wellbeing are improved.

Mezzanine level meeting room in office with artificial grass

 

How Do We Implement Biophilic Design in Our Workspace?

The best way to implement biophilic design is at the outset of a project. By involving all the key stakeholders in such a project, including employees, facilities managers, finance teams, office design consultants and biophilic experts like Planteria Group, the whole picture can be realised.  Incorporating the spatial and human opportunities that exist enables the organisation to realise a plant display and design that increases performance, wellbeing, creativity and profit.

Planteria Group work closely with Zentura, specialists in office design and fit out, to design biophilia into the perfect space for you creating the ultimate working environment.  You can find out more, take a look at their case studies or obtain a free consultancy session here.


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International Nurses Day

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May is an important month for health, nurses and mental health awareness.

Every year on May 12th we celebrate International Nurses Day. Nurses save lives and create wellbeing and International Nurses Day is a day in which nurses around the world are celebrated for the fantastic work that they do on a daily basis. It also happens to be Florence Nightingale’s birthday.

Following this, beginning on the second Monday in May for one week, is #MentalHealthAwareness week, in which activities to raise awareness about mental health will be encouraged across the country. This year’s theme is Body Image – how we think and feel about our bodies.

Keeping yourself healthy is a key factor to longevity; therefore, making small changes throughout your routine today could benefit you greatly in later life.

Some of these changes are easier to identify, such as eating healthier food and exercising regularly.

However, a fact that some might be unaware of are the health benefits that plants and flowers can bring to the individual.

 

The Benefits of Flowers

In addition to being visually beautiful and having an appealing scent, flowers and plants also hold several proven health benefits.

1. Flowers Improve Anxiety

Most widely reported is the reduction in anxiety levels that flowers can provide.

For those suffering from anxiety, which is a third of us in the UK, flowers are said to restore some short-term calm and alleviate stress.

 

2. Flowers Can Improve Memory

A brilliant health benefit of flowers and plants, rosemary in particular, is the fact that they can sharpen the individual’s powers of recall.

In a 2015 experiment by Northumbria University, professors found that individuals who were surrounded by rosemary were able to remember more items from a specifically designed test as opposed to participants who had been surrounded with no flora.

 

3. Flowers Encourage Productivity

Through providing visual stimulation, flowers can encourage productivity in the workplace and increase brain performance.

Whilst a minimalist office might appear better to some, an office with plenty of plants and flowers can have a greater effect on the amount of work produced in it.

 

4. Flowers Can Fast-track Recovery

Many individuals report recovering quicker when surrounded with gifts of flowers and plants. There are many studies which prove that views of nature have a significant impact on patient outcomes, healing rates and also reduction of pain perception. This study showed the effects the environmental design plays on a patient’s outcome.

This is due to a number of factors: relieving stress and providing stimulation being only a couple.

 

5. Flowers Can Improve Mood

As flowers and plants are visually stunning, their appearance can improve the mood of those admiring them.

In addition, the injection of colour can brighten up a workspace, and the incredible fragrances ensure that the room is inviting and fresh.

 

6. Flowers and Plants Purify the Air

Indoor air-pollution within the workplace is an issue which contributes to thousands of sick days being taken each year.

This is when stagnant air sits within the building and has no opportunity to be circulated.

Flowers and plants can be used to combat this issue, as they absorb VCOP’s from the air as they take in carbon dioxide, and give off oxygen, thus purifying the air.

 

Healing Gardens

All of these health benefits are recognised in hospitals and other healthcare facilities throughout the implementation of healing gardens.

Healing gardens are areas of colourful flowers and plants where a patient can visit to promote recovery, find refuge and benefit from the peaceful surroundings.

In addition, in human nature is the innate desire to be near natural components such as flowers and plants.

This is called biophilia, and healing gardens provide the perfect access to these benefits.

 

Consider corporate flower bouquets to improve the working environment at your company – contact Planteria today.


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