Adding office plants to your office is a great way to brighten up your workspace and improve your mood. More than just being aesthetically pleasing, plants are even capable of removing some common chemical irritants from the air, including ammonia, benzene, and formaldehyde, among others. These chemicals are released from the carpet, paint, and electronics in offices. Fewer air toxins can mean fewer headaches, and the increased humidity from the plants can help with fatigue and nose and throat irritation from dust.
There are some different considerations with office plants than plants in your home. You must first consider the amount of natural light found in your office, and choose plants that will thrive in the amount of light you have. Some plants, such as Dracaenas, don't require much light or water and do not drop leaves. Dracaena Janet Craig is a particularly popular choice for office plants, though it is a larger plant.
You also need to consider how much time you have to care for the plant. It is best not to get a plant that requires daily attention if you work in a busy office and won't have the time. Keep in mind that you may need to repot the plant, which can be messy. Enlisting the help of other co-workers in selecting, purchasing and caring for the plants is a good idea.
Finally, consider what size and type of plant will suit you best. If you work in a cubicle, a small desktop plant will probably be best. If you work in a larger, open office, a small potted tree or floor plant might look great. You also have the option to choose between flowering plants or simply foliage plants, which offer leaves without flowers. In the springtime, it is often possible to find potted bulbs such as tulips or hyacinth, which can really brighten up a dull space at the end of winter.
Once you've addressed these concerns, the only thing left to do is choose your plant. According to Dr. B.C. Wolverton, an author and scientific researcher for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the best plants for removing toxins from the air are Areca palms, Lady palms, Bamboo palms, and rubber plants. These are all larger plants that do best in a open space.
Other popular office plants include peace lilies, ficus trees and spider plants. Spider plants will look good on a desk or hanging in a window. You might also choose an orchid for your desk; though these require more care and careful watering than other office plants, they are especially beautiful and interesting to look at. An ivy is another great idea for your office plants; these plants do well in sunny locations, don't need too much watering and are relatively hardy. It is also relatively easy to take stem cuttings from ivy, root them in a small glass of water, then plant them in more pots around the office.