22 December 2021

Which plants are right for your home office?

Adding plants to your home office can improve your health and productivity – we look at which plants could be right for your environment


Maryam Munir

Maryam Munir

Maryam Munir worked as a content marketing writer at Ciphr from 2019 to 2021.


Employee engagement Health and wellbeing


Adding plants to your home office can improve your health and productivity – we look at which plants could be right for your environment

When employees around the world were forced to work remotely due to Covid-19, employers had to make sure workers had the equipment needed to work from home – including laptops, monitors, desks, and chairs. Now, with 40% of UK employers saying they expect more than half their workforce to work regularly from home after the pandemic has ended, as stated in a recent CIPD report, employees should ensure that their home office is not only a place that inspires them, but one that helps them thrive.

Adding plants to your work environment is a simple way to lower stress levels, and improve your productivity and wellbeing.

Before we get into the specific plants you should be buying, it’s important to note that you first need to assess your space. Does your room get direct sunlight or indirect sunlight, or does it stay shady? Is it a large space where you can put lots of plants, or is it smaller and more convenient for hanging plants?

Low maintenance plants

Low maintenance plants are best if you want something that requires little effort to look after.

According to The Little Botanical, Sansevieria (snake plant) is easy to look after. It copes well in both a well-lit or a darker space and manages in warm or cool and draughty conditions. You just need to avoid overwatering it.

If your home office gets lots of light, you can choose an aloe vera plant that doesn’t need lots of watering and thrives in a warm place.

On the other hand, the pothos plant (devil’s ivy) is well-suited to low-light environments, making it ideal for darker rooms.

Vibrant plants

Different houseplants like Rhaphidophora, Ficus or Philodendron in beautiful flower pots on white desk in front of gray wall

Monstera deliciosa (Swiss cheese plant), with its large, distinctive leaves, is visually striking. Due to its size, it can become the statement piece of your home office, but you do need to make sure your room is a well-lit space and that you water the plant at least once a fortnight.

When decorating shelf space, plants like the string of pearls are a good buy. It can sit on your shelf and trails down. You just need to place it in bright, indirect sunlight and water every one to two weeks.

The lady palm is also vibrant and tall. It can sit in the corner of your office and only needs indirect sunlight.

Improve air quality

Because indoor plants make your air cleaner to breathe, you may want to choose plants which are especially good at improving air quality – this can improve your health as a result.

In this instance, Chamaedorea elegans (parlour palm) is helpful. The palm is air-purifying and can grow even in a small space with low light. An indoor parlour palm can grow away from windows, but will just grow very slowly, often taking years to reach its full height of 3-4 feet tall when placed in sunlight.

Peace lilies can also improve your air quality by up to 60%. The plant absorbs mould spores which commonly occur from dust inside and can be useful in areas of high humidity.

Similarly, Dracaena marginate (dragon tree) is another effective air filter. This plant removes formaldehyde, benzene, trichloroethylene, and carbon dioxide – all of which are linked to health problems. Dracaena plants also tend to increase the humidity of a room, which in turn helps to control respiratory distresses.

If your home office includes lots of furniture, the spider plant can be useful. This is an antioxidant; it effectively removes ammonia, benzene, formaldehyde, and xylene – harsh chemicals that are found in cleaning products and furniture. The plant is extremely easy to grow and quickly improves air quality.

Don’t forget, if you want some greenery in your home office to make it look aesthetically pleasing, but don’t actually want real plants to look after, you can always buy artificial plants. However, with real plants, you can ensure your home office is not only a space that looks good, but one that also supports your health and productivity.