Funded by Horti Innovation, the app platform was created by The Republic of Everyone and The Bravery, in consultation with the nursery industry and developed by Circul8.
Lead RMIT researcher Associate Professor Marco Amati from the Centre for Urban Research says he and the team examined 101 scientific articles that explored the benefits of plants in indoor environments.
Based on those articles the research team together with a panel of plant experts came up with a rule of thumb to help people improve their plant life balance – the Plant Life Balance Index.
“We found that benefits of indoor plants could be grouped into two categories – air quality and wellbeing,” Amati said.
“Indoor plants can remove up to 75-90 percent of air pollution and improve air quality by filtering out airborne toxins caused by organic chemicals in things like paints and furniture finishes.
The simple rule is that in a medium indoors space, one medium sized plant can improve the air quality by 25 percent.
The research also found that indoor plants benefit wellbeing, depending on the total number of plants, combined with the variety of the plants.
“For example, a big group of plants that looks complex, or has lots of different varieties of plants, is able to fascinate, foster relaxation and help people de-stress,” Amati said.
“We also found that while variety was key, it was also important to create a cohesive ‘look’ – or organised complexity within a group of plants – to optimise wellbeing.
“Five or more plants in a media indoor space, of all different species and sizes leads to significantly improved wellbeing.”
The Plant Life Balance team will be honoured at the Webby Awards ceremony on May 14, at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City.
The app is available now both on the iPhone App Store and Google Play.
Story: Chanel Bearder