Blaschke and her colleagues have learned that adding artificial plants to spaces can have desirable outcomes. Their study was based in an oncology clinic waiting room in Australia and collected data from cancer patients, staff members, and people caring for the cancer patients. The investigators found that “Eighty-one percent . . . of respondents noticed the [artificial] green features when first entering the waiting room and 67% . . . noticed they were artificial. Eighty-one percent . . . indicated ‘like/like a lot’ when reporting their first reaction to the green features. Forty-eight percent . . . were positively affected and 23% . . . were very positively affected. Eighty-one percent . . . agreed/strongly agreed that ‘The greenery brightens the waiting room,’ 62% . . . agreed/strongly agreed that they ‘prefer living plants,’ and 76% . . . agreed/strongly agreed that ‘‘lifelike’ [artificial] plants are better than no plants.’. . . . Patients, staff, and carers mostly accepted artificial plants as an alternative design solution to real plants.” The artificial plants in place included “plant arrangements, hanging installations, two movable green walls, and one rock garden on wheels placed throughout the outpatients’ clinic waiting room.”
Sarah Blaschke, Clare O’Callaghan, and Penelope Schofield. “Artificial But Better Than Nothing: The Greening of an Oncology Clinic Waiting Room.” HERD: Health Environments Research and Design Journal, in press.