The word ‘fake’ has had a bad rap of late, but when it comes to plants, going artificial can be the perfect solution.
When you think of artificial office plants or plants for the home, you may picture a sad, plastic-y object, way out of the league of its beautiful living counterpart. But this image is now woefully out-of-date.
These days, you can get very good quality artificial plants which are so lifelike that you need to touch them to be sure they’re not real.
In our industry, we use them a lot, confident as we are that their looks won’t let us down.
Artificial planting arrangements are perfect for homes and offices where there is little light, or where the temperatures and level of care, can fluctuate dramatically. In short, they are perfect for places where living plants wouldn’t survive.
And where better to place a plant, than in a dull, dark spot, where there is no uplifting natural light? Subterranean office floors, shuttered spa treatment rooms, windowless offices… there are many places where only an artificial plant would do.
In reception areas, for example, where sliding doors are forever letting in blasts of cold air, and visitors come and go, perhaps brushing against the branches, this is abuse which would harm a living plant, but to which an artificial office plants bears no mind at all.
With this in mind, you can shift an artificial plant around wherever you please. Something which requires much more care and consideration when it comes to living specimens. In fact, we can even supply them in wheeled planters, to make it even easier to try them in different spots.
UV-rated artificial plants are popular with restaurants and bars, where they dress up and screen off outdoor terraces with planting without having to worry about the harsh British weather changes or the odd drink or cigarette butt finding their way into the topsoil.
In addition, indoor artificial plants can come with inherent fire retardant properties, so they tick a few safety boxes too.
An artificial planting arrangement also saves the cost-conscious home or workplace considerable financial outlay by cutting out the need for regular maintenance.
They will look good for years and really just need to be dusted every once in a while, and we do recommend you do this: a dusty plant is a truly sad sight.
Not to mention the fact that artificial office plants have none of the flaws that nature creates on live planting.
Now, as nature-lovers, we see the odd wonky flower or varied leaf tone as all part of the living world’s beautiful variety. But if you are a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to appearances, then a flawless fake house or office plant could be just your thing.
However, even if you do embrace nature’s imperfections, but don’t have the right conditions for a real plant, there is always the preserved option.
Unlike replica, preserved plants are real plants, but expertly treated to last up to ten years, without the need for any care. The water is removed from a live plant and replaced with a saline solution, so the plant looks alive, but is preserved at its prime.
Preserved plants come in a range of options, from big-leafed palms and figs, to fan plants and trees. They will suit any indoors location, as long as the humidity isn’t too high (pool-side locations are a no-no) and are truly lifelike.
Artificial plant, real benefits
We go on, a lot, about the many health and productivity benefits of plants in the home and workplace and it’s true that most of the time we’re talking about live plants.
A living plant can filter the air of toxins, regulate humidity, remove dust and bring out our innate nurturing side by needing care and attention.
Yet this doesn’t mean that artificial plants don’t help bring a boost to our day-to-day lives.
Studies into our need to stay connected to nature for good health and spirits is termed ‘biophilia’, and this connection doesn’t just happen when we are surrounded by living plants.
Just to see something natural, such as a view of greenery from a window, or a picture of forests or fields, can provide a nature connection which will give us a tangible boost.
So, it follows that a replica plant can bring the look and feel of nature to a room or office enough to brighten our day.
At a time when we spent a lot, perhaps too much, time indoors, anything to join us back to with nature, with its nurturing effects, can only be a good thing.