Living Walls in the Workplace: Why You Should Install Them Too
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Updated on 20th Mar 2017 by Planters
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What are Living Walls?

Living walls, also known as vertical gardens or green walls, are gaining popularity among both the home and the workplace. Vertical gardening is the method of growing plants on walls rather than on horizontal surfaces such tables, counters, or floors. There are many different ways to grow a vertical garden and there are various benefits to having a living wall, not only in the home but in the workplace as well.

History of Living Walls:

Though early concepts of vertical gardens date back to the Babylonian era, the modern living walls that we see today have been around since the 1980’s. Patrick Blanc, a French botanist, is said to be the founder of the vertical wall. In 1988, Blanc created the first living wall on the outside of the Museum of Science and Industry in Paris.

How Living Walls Work:

Vertical gardens are created by using structures in which plants are placed vertically against a wall or multiple walls. These can be used to cover the entire wall or a smaller area of the wall. Some green walls are used to disguise unsightly areas while others are used to simply add beauty to a wall space. Plant walls can be installed both indoors or outdoors and can be customised to fit any space big or small.

There is another aspect of living walls that is perfect for spaces within large interiors when plant walls structures are not an option. Known as plant wires, these free-hanging vertical gardens can be customised to fit specific office dimensions and are inspired by hanging vines found in the rainforest.

Benefits of Vertical Gardens:

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There are numerous benefits to plant walls. One of the most obvious reasons for incorporating a living wall is the beauty. Adding a green wall to an office space makes the area more welcoming and relaxing. It adds an unexpected design element and creates a focal point in that space. If you are in the retail industry, plant walls will help increase foot traffic, ultimately leading to more sales. If you are in a corporate building, living walls will help create a more hospitable and comforting environment for client meetings. They are aesthetically pleasing and will make your office stand out among the competition.

Fresh Air

Another benefit of adding a living wall is fresh air. Many office spaces are enclosed and dry, especially ones lacking in windows. Vertical gardens will add more oxygen in the workspace as well as filter out nearly 90% of air pollutants that are inside the office. The air pollutants come from appliances, air conditioners, and walls. By adding a green wall, you can greatly decrease the amount of sickness among employees. Furthermore, certain types of plants, such as chamomile or other aromatic ones, can help keep the air fresh and sanitised.

Reduce toxins

Vertical gardens also help reduce the amount of harmful VOC’s (volatile organic compounds) in the workspace. Spider plants and peace lilies are great for absorbing VOC’s. VOC’s are emitted by paint, formaldehyde, and carbon monoxide, and can be harmful to workers. Green walls act as filters that help prevent dust, purify the air, and control humidity and temperatures.

Improve employee morale

Living walls are also a great way to boost employee morale. Adding a vertical garden to your office will provide emotional aid to employees and help reduce the amount of absenteeism in the office. Employees that help create or maintain a vertical wall will reduce their stress and anger while increasing their energy, providing a more positive and productive work atmosphere. Green walls can also help children or adults with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) focus better.

Act as a sound barrier

Vertical gardens will also act as a sound barrier. This is especially helpful in a large or loud workspace or city. Vertical gardens naturally block high-frequency sounds and reduce low-frequency noise. Green walls can help keep an office quieter, promoting a less stressful and distracting workspace.

Save money

Living walls will help you save money, too. Living walls can help reduce heat loss from buildings, resulting in a 75% decrease in wind chill and 25% decrease in heating demand. This could help decrease the cost of energy bills, which is especially helpful in colder climates or cooler months. In the warmer months, indoor green walls help keep the air cool through a process known as “evapotranspiration”. Evapotranspiration is the process of water being transferred from land to the atmosphere through evaporation from the soil and transpiration from plants. Outdoor living walls can help reduce wall temperatures by nearly 50 degrees Fahrenheit, greatly reducing the cost of energy and air conditioning costs.

Outdoor benefits

If you choose to add a vertical garden to the outside of your office, it not only adds to the aesthetic of the building, it also increases the real estate value of the property. Furthermore, outdoor green walls provide a home for birds and insects, promoting biodiversity. Outdoor living walls will also reduce smog and pollutants as well as help offset fuel emissions in urban and suburban areas.

Installing vertical gardens in the workspace is a simple way to increase profit, decrease expenses, and boost company morale. If you’re thinking about adding a vertical garden to your office space, consider checking out the Planters Group. To learn more about the Planters Group and the services they offer, click here.

Not only are plant walls aesthetically pleasing, there are also countless benefits to incorporating them in the office. Plant walls help promote a clean environment, both inside and out, reduce the amount of harmful toxins in the air, act a sound barrier for indoor and outdoor noise, and greatly decrease energy and air conditioning costs. Furthermore, outdoor vertical gardens help increase the value of the property, reduce fuel emission and smog, and create a safe haven for birds and insects.
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