Plants: the gifts that keep on giving

Ahead of Mother’s Day this Sunday, many will spend this week looking for a special gift to show their appreciation to their mother or someone else who is special to them. From flowers and chocolates, to spa treatments and perfume, Brits have been known to spoil their mothers at this time of year. In 2017 alone, the nation spent a staggering £1.4 billion pounds on their mums.

For the large part, flowers remain a popular choice to celebrate Mother’s Day and of the £1.4 billion spent last year on gifts, cards and services, an estimated £260 million went on flowers. While cut flowers are visually appealing, they lack most of the benefits of a live plant. With the number of working mums increasing year on year, a live plant that could be taken to work and brighten up their workspace is emerging as a practical and thoughtful gift, to buy mums.

Greenery in the workplace has been shown to deliver many benefits. According to research by Ambius and South Bank University, plants can help reduce noise through sound absorption, creating a calmer atmosphere in the office. Moreover, studies indicate that greenery can make us more comfortable in our surroundings, reduce stress and help improve our overall wellbeing. As well as their aesthetic benefits, they therefore make a perfect gift to help mothers relax and de-stress when at work. Separate studies have also found that people generate more ideas when they work in an office with plants.

Below are some handy tips for picking a plant that’s guaranteed to bring a smile to its recipient this Mother’s Day:

  • Anthuriums: A great alternative to classic flowers like roses. Its flowers are heart shaped, and come in shades of crimson, pink, red or white. Robust and easy to look after, modern varieties of these tropical pot plants flower profusely, brightening any space.
  • Aglaonema “Creta”: This new variety of the popular interior plant has brightly-coloured foliage in shades of red, cream and green. They can survive for long periods and are more robust than many other varieties of plant – making them a perfect choice for the office.
  • Ficus “Natasja”: A dwarf variety of the common weeping fig. Its small glossy leaves, tree-like form and reduced size make it ideal for those with smaller workstations. It is tolerant of over-watering and with the right care, it can live for years.
  • Jasmine: Jasmine is the right choice for masking odours: it has a strong, yet pleasant citrusy scent and is guaranteed to make any work area smell fresh.
  • Tulips: Bright and colourful, tulips bear beautiful flowers in a variety of hues – partly why they are the third most popular flower on the planet. A planted bowl of them goes a long way towards brightening up a well-lit desk or windowsill.

We spend a large proportion of our time in our work environment, so why not use Mother’s Day as an opportunity to enhance your mum’s work area? Make an office or house plant your gift of choice this year: it’s a considerate present guaranteed to remind your mum of you throughout the year.

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