A “Green” Office Design Trend

Trends come and go in fashion senses, hair styles, and even office and design aesthetics.

Five years ago, we saw the explosion of gray used in wall paint, accessories, and anywhere else you could think to implement the color. We’ve seen eras where everyone is a wallpaper enthusiast, times where no one seems to be able to get enough bold and bright, and now, we enter into entirely new trends.

Of course, people prefer different styles, but one major factor of multiple office designs, especially as of late, is the implementation of plants.

Bringing the outdoors in, whether through small desk plants or entire living walls, provides a calming energy for a lot of people and completes a space nicely. It is a staple in many new open floor plans, dynamic offices, and makerspaces.


Mental Positivity

Experts are finding that not only does office greenery have visual appeal, but it actually carries multiple other benefits associated with wellbeing.

According to the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, the simple addition of plants to homes and workplaces increases happiness. The natural essence that they provide creates a sense of relaxation and security.

Further, there is a correlation found that when people have this positive and stress-free environment created by greenery, they also have increased concentration abilities and, therefore, increased productivity levels. A University of Technology Sydney study recorded that productivity and job satisfaction increased more than 10% when plants were included in the work environment.

This developed positive outlook also led to employees feeling more alive and active, and it provided a perceived added energy. This is valuable for businesses as workdays are long and often start early, and employees might need the extra push.

Simply designing with a biophilic focus or even an addition of simple natural vegetation has the potential to change the day-to-day outcomes of your business and employees’ productivity and wellbeing.


Sound Reduction

Plants are, in fact, perfect for offices because in addition to mental positivity, they actually help absorb and minimize sound. Noisy conversations between co-workers, pencil tapping, or loud keyboard clicking won’t be nearly as distracting when greenery positioning is maximized.

The leaves, bark, and wood stems of plants have excellent absorbing qualities, and the uneven textures of plants help to break up sound waves. Some plants have better sound absorbing qualities than others and placement within the room will also make a difference in noise reduction.

Better Sound Proofing lists ferns and other dense, thick plants, such as various fig plants to be best for absorption, and states that you’ll want coverage in the areas where noise could otherwise bounce, such as against walls.


Plant It

The investment of plants can feel like a big task, so start small with easy-to-care-for succulents and air plants and work your way into larger greenery spaces. Incorporating plants is an opportunity to modernize your office environment without investing in an entire redesign.

To get started, think about which plants complement your space the best. Would it be beneficial to use a unique textured plant in opposition to a room full of sharp lines? Do you want to use small plants as accents or a tall plant as a focal point?

Would floor plants work in your space or do you need plants that fit on desks and side tables? You could even consider planters that mount on the wall or hang from the ceiling.

Remember, choose plants that work in the amount of sunlight your space can provide, and make sure you take into consideration how often they need to be watered.


Overall, humans have an innate desire to be connected to nature in one form or another. While a hike in the woods is not for everyone, designing with use of our natural environments is incredibly beneficial. Think about the unique ways that you can use greenery to improve your quality of space and create an inviting office environment.

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