Houseplants are good for us

on Monday, 03 February 2020. Posted in News

The article on the BBC news site (published 28 January 2020) asks ‘are houseplants bad for us?’ We all know the opposite is true i.e. surrounding ourselves with plants has many positive benefits for our health, general wellbeing and our performance. And there are hundreds of research papers to confirm this.
 
Alocasia macrorrhizos
 
The HTA (Horticulture Trade Association) acknowledges this factor too confirming that ‘horticulture makes a significant contribution to improving air quality. Increased planting of trees and shrubs in public and private spaces, especially in towns and cities, will reduce the impact of poor air quality. In order to fulfil increased demand for UK grown plants and trees, the UK nursery production sector will require investment in infrastructure.’
 
Whilst the BBC article acknowledges some of the benefits of plants, it is more concerned with ‘plant miles’ and their affect on the environment. We acknowledge this but ask does one cancel out the other?
 

Kentia 3

 
With regards to making the industry more environmentally friendly, we are working with suppliers to improve recycling. Most of our members use peat free soil; some even use hydroponics – water-based grown plants.
 
Recycling remains one of the problems. Last week the government introduced its Environment Bill to Parliament. Its ambitious aim is for the UK to be net-zero by 2050 and create a greener Britain. There is some way to go within the horticultural industry to achieve this.
 
 
Black plastic plant pots and trays are not recyclable but the newly introduced taupe ones are. UK associations are working to get this fact recognised so that consumers can recycle for kerbside collections. But for businesses there is still some way to go either to switch to recyclable pots and for local authorities to collect for recycling or alternatively for suppliers to take back pots for reuse.
 
Within our industry as we said, we are discussing these options alongside packaging materials. We will be discussing this further with an industry panel at Futursescape Spring on 17 March.
 
 Spring