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biophilic design: the many uses of plants in interiors

in biophilic design

Plants bring life into designed spaces. In the context of biophilic design, they offer an opportunity to connect to the natural world and become more aware of its processes.

Far from being only decorative, plants can serve a number of functions in interiors and designed spaces…

connection to life

Plants are a lively design feature – one that evolves over time, creating an occasion to observe growth, change, and the cycle of life from close.

Taking care of plants adds active interaction to the experience, further nurturing interest and connection to nature. Growing edible plants extends the connection even further, stimulating curiosity about the origin of food.

Shadows of plants on a stone wall.
Credit: Studio Andrew Trotter – Ph: Salva Lopez

lively partitions

Planted partitions introduce an interesting textural feature in the space. They create privacy while letting light pass through, thus maintaining an open ambiance and preserving prospect views.

In terms of ambiance, planted partitions can also shape mysterious atmospheres or frame comforting alcoves.

directing attention

Oversized plant arrangements, green walls, strategically placed plants…greenery naturally draws the eye while adding interest and softness to the space.

Playing with shape and scale, plants can be used to direct attention. They can create a focal point, highlight or disguise features in the space, alter the perception of scale, and more…

Draping plants add texture to a smooth wall.
Credit: Kind of Oj
Draping ivy plant highlighting the transition between two wall finishes.
Credit: Studio Effetto
Outdoor patio with planted back wall.
Credit: Barde vanVoltt – Ph: Alejandro Ramírez Orozco

natural shade

Plants are a natural way to create shade.

Be it in interiors, outdoor spaces, or in urban areas, tall or draping plants effectively substitute (or complement) curtains, improving thermal comfort in the space and enriching it with interesting shadow plays.

Outdoor lounge shaded by tall trees.
Credit: Expormim

From nurturing the connection to nature to solving functional needs, plants serve multiple functions in designed spaces – all while adding a precious element of life.