Office Plants

Plants in offices are difficult. Someone has to feed, nurture and maintain their vigour. However, with careful calculations to light, attention and growth habit – it can be achieved easily (in house).

The factors to consider are space, shade, artificial lighting and problems caused by air conditioning. Plants make it clear when they need water. With these plants, a high humidity level is needed, so a spray of water into the atmsophere is enough.

Dracaena burley (Dragon plant) – it tolerates light shade and requires little watering. It can cope in drought conditions, though not for prolonged periods. It can equally adapt to cooler temperatures for short periods but not below 12c. No pruning except to control growth.

Pachira aquatica (Money tree) it can cope with artificial light, in fact it needs some shelter from direct sun. It prefers high humidity and temperatures not going below 10c.

Nephrolepsis exaltata (Boston fern) a plant that enjoys humidity and regulates it too. Neither a cold aspect nor a hot one, so away from machines / equipment that dry it out. It’s shade tolerant and has purifying benefits. This plant likes moist soil but not excessive.

Maranta leuconeura (Prayer plant) – It likes full to partial light. It will not tolerate shade / wet soil. A mist of water occasionally will appease its dryness or when it becomes discoloured. This plant survives on being rootbound. By its habit, it does not require repotting as long as the size of the pot is substantial enough not to overbalance. It purifies the air too.

Adiantum rubbelum (Maidenhair fern) versatile because of its ability in adapting to different environments. A sheltered aspect outside with partial shade – it likes its moisture, so inside, partial sun in a direct spot.

Chamaedorea elegans (Parlour palm) – A shade tolerant plant, it can cope with fluctuating temperatures caused by equipment and heating. However, it will need a degree of humidity and a feed every week or so. It needs more water than most drought tolerant, but must be free draining. It will not tolerate saturated soil.

Zamioculus zamiifolia (ZZ plant) It needs little attention other than a shaded area. Shaded and cool, but not cold. It will not cope going below 8c. A plant that will cope with most conditions but avoid direct light. It is a drought tolerant plant and generally low maintenance. It’s effective in filtering air.

Sansevieria trifasciata (Mothers tongue) this plant as the others has filtering attributes. It will keep fresh air circulating and improve the quality of the atmosphere. In a confined area, it is capable of coping with shade, little care and almost no water. It is not good in a chilly spot or one with a strong draught. Its downfall is probably fuss and to overwater will kill it.

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I'm Craft Gardener with several years experience. Due to the massive impact the internet has had on advice, forums and consultancy services - it seems knowledge and experience is everchanging and we should therefore share techniques and offer others alternative routes in pests, diseases and weed treatments. The very smallest alterations in aspect, soil conditioning and pruning can determine a plants vigour, health and lifespan hugely. My blogs and online assistance should motivate and interest even the most amateur of green fingered people. As my ex partner used to say "it's green isn't it"?