Yesterday, we posted an article in our Apartment Guide about a creative way to bring the outdoors inside apartments. The indoor vertical wall garden is just about as cool a way of decorating your apartment as shag carpeting and Absolut Vodka ads.
As briefly described in that article, (so I’ll expound here) my apartment in San Francisco has this room in between the kitchen and the family room that reasonable people would consider the dining room and furnish with a large dinner table. We actually had a few ideas for this room, one of the more interesting ones consisted of making it into kind of a little personal cafe with 2 or 3 small tables around the perimeter of the room, an old record player in the corner, and some kind of beaded entranceway. Eventually, however, we turned it into a makeshift greenhouse, with a wide variety of plants. Frequent guests are asked to kindly bring a plant in exchange for temporary lodging.
Since plants are a great way to keep apartments healthy by oxygenation, filtering out chemicals from the air and keeping temperature and humidity stable, they are always good to have around an apartment, or any building for that matter. In fact, a video presentation from the TED lecture series elaborated upon how the inclusion of nearly 60,000 plants of 3 different species of plants in an office building in New Delhi was extremely effective in mitigating the harmful respiratory effects of that city’s polluted air.
That presentation recommended 3 types of plants, the Areca Palm, which produces oxygen during the daytime, Mother-in-law’s Tongue, which produces oxygen at night and the Money Plant, which effectively filters formaldehyde out of the air.
Even if your apartment was somehow encapsulated in an airtight envelope, if you had (for each person) 4 Areca Palms and 6 Mother-in-Law’s Tongue plants, they would be able to convert enough C02 to oxygen for you to survive indefinitely. Here is a short video explaining the project at the Paharpu Business Centre in New Delhi:
We thought that it would be a great idea for leasing agents or property managers to either put a few plants in each new apartment unit, or have a nice little greenhouse or catalogue for new renters to pick from. It may sound like such a simple idea, but our whole apartment gets really excited when we get a new plant and the mass of green expands a little bit more.
Of course, if you want to get really fancy, installing some vertical wall gardens in apartments, or offering that as a feature could be a great way to market your apartment community’s emphasis on going green. Our favorite vertical wall garden product is definitely the Woolly Pocket Garden Company. Check out their site for more info.