Plants provide an element of character to a room that exudes a sense of beauty, health, intimacy and warmth. You can choose art within nature to denote symbolism of your inner vision while adding the desired aesthetics and environmental benefits to your outer vision.

Plants provide oxygen and activate positive energy essential to revitalization, replenishment and renewal of our mind and body. As natures' gift, plants lend a natural purification system that renews the air through drawing in environmental impurities and replenishing it with negative ions for cleansing and renewal. Plants are known to control humidity in the air, reduce noise level as an acoustical absorber and decrease the levels of stress. The multitude of health benefits provided by nature replaces the detriments of chemical products that are applied to alter environmental conditions.

When selecting your plants, research various plants to determine which ones are toxic and harmful to people and pets. Choose vegetation that is vibrant, healthy and lush. Observe the nurturance of a plant for proper watering, sunlight, artificial light, moisture, temperature, plant soil and food. You can avoid generating negative energy in your lifespace by consistently removing plants that are withering away.

The Healing Benefits of Inviting Nature into Your Home:
Interacting with nature – bringing the vitality of nature into your home is spiritually, emotionally and physically therapeutic. Visually, plants create a warm atmosphere that lends intimate and soothing character to a space. Nature evokes an inner peace that instills oneness and balance with it.

Counter Negative Energy – plants provide oxygen and activate positive energy beneficial in removing negative energy from a room. Plants detoxify and purify the air and control humidity within the space. Placing a plant within three feet of a computer will help filter electromagnetic energy. The benefit of introducing plants into the home reduces the reliance of chemical products to perform indoor detoxification and other purification remedies.

Sound Absorber – the presence of vegetation adds noise control as it buffers and creates a reduction of sound waves. Plants provide you the benefit of having an environment that is innately essential for relaxation.

Reduction of Stress Levels – stress reduction is a result of all the health benefits that plants contribute to providing the lifespace, from detoxifying and purifying the air to filtering electromagnetic energy and diminishing noise level.

The Art of Nature In Your Home
Visual Aesthetics – Plants symbolize an art of nature where its design uniqueness is interpreted as exhibiting a contemporary and traditional essence in style. In selecting plants with flowing curves and soft, smooth textures, one can counter balance hard surfaces, straight angles and linearity of elements in a room as that of walls, windows and furniture. Plants can visually alter the appearance of a room. Tall plants increase the visual height of a ceiling and when strategically positioned in a room, serve as wonderful dividers to create a space within a space.

Contemplate on the following myriad of art forms and observe symbolic attributes, health benefits and aesthetical contributions that nature has to offer. Consider integrating plants that will share your vision as members of your lifespace.

African Violets – Symbolize spirituality, peace and protection. In feng shui, African Violets are best placed in the “wealth area” of your space as the round leaves are acknowledged to represent coins. African Violets lend a traditional art form.

Bamboo – Are an Asian form of art that symbolize good fortune and longevity. They don’t require a lot of natural light and can be grown in water. Bamboo is an excellent choice for kitchens and baths. It is beneficial for releasing water vapor into the air when a room is extracted from moisture caused from heating systems during winter months. Bamboo is instrumental in removing pollutants from the air. Place a bamboo in the front of your home to represent long life for its inhabitants.

Boston Fern – A lush hanging plant that lends a contemporary and traditional appeal. It emits humidity into a room through a process defined as transpiration. It can enhance and bring visual balance to a corner in a room and offers a welcoming presence of protection to an entrance. The Boston Fern is one of the best known plants for removing indoor air pollutants.

English Ivy – A traditional style by nature, this easy to grow, trailing vine of vegetation lends warmth and character to a lifespace. When placed at the entrance of a home, it is said to repel negativity and evil. English Ivy removes benzene found in plastics as well as helps to control formaldehyde found in furniture, paint and carpet.

Ficus – Reflects a blend of contemporary and traditional style in nature. A large version of this plant can be employed as a wonderful room divider to define a specific space within a space, i.e. creating a dining area within a living room. It can symbolically lift a low ceiling and is beneficial for removing toxins from the air produced by formaldehyde and xylene. The Ficus has a high resistance to insects.

Ginseng Ficus – A sculptural Asian inspired plant known to improve room quality as a natural air filter. The Ginseng Ficus contributes to the environment by reducing the level of chemical pollutants released by various building materials, i.e. ceramic, vinyl, carpeting and other structural elements.

Jade Plant- A traditional form in art of the evergreen symbolizes prosperity and health. To represent feng shui principle, the Jade can be placed in the "wealth area" of your lifespace.

Lotus - An aquatic plant representing Hindu and Ayurvedic spiritual symbolism of beauty, divinity, eternity and purity. The flower of the lotus plant is said to disperse a soothing and calming effect often used to relieve stress and enhance relaxation.

Orchid - Introduce a touch of Asia inspired by nature to your space. Orchids are exotic window plants that offer a relatively inexpensive approach to decorating your home. They reflect the essence of simple elegance within a minimal amount of growing space. To complement its simplistic beauty, choose vases or urns in contemporary bonsai designs.

Palm – Symbolic of spirituality, palms are a contemporary style plant that accentuates a tropical theme. They also serve functionally as a room divider. Palms remove indoor air pollutants such as xylene and formaldehyde and demonstrate a resistance to most insects.

Peace Lily – A sculptural plant with white flower blooms is symbolic of peace. Its nature design lends a contemporary appeal to an office and home environment. The Peace Lily helps regulate indoor humidity level through its high transpiration rate. It is beneficial for the removal of acetone, benzene, formaldehyde and alcohols.

Philodendron - Symbolizes health. In feng shui, this traditional style plant symbolizes the element of Fire. It grows well under both natural and artificial light and adds warmth and character to any room in a home.

Pine – A highly auspicious plant in feng shui that symbolizes longevity. In the midst of its traditional style, Pines can be featured at the front door and entryway to denote longevity.

Rubber Tree – A tough, easy to grow plant that can survive minimal light. This tree is instrumental in removing formaldehyde. In feng shui, the Rubber Tree is considered an auspicious plant. It flaunts a traditional style and is most beneficial when placed in the “wealth area” of your lifespace as the round leaves symbolize abundance and good fortune

Sage – Is an herb said to enhance intuition when purifying the energies within one's lifespace. It is commonly used for spiritual healing and purification through the ritual of smudging (cleansing the energies within a space). As aromatherapy, sage refreshes and revitalizes the air from odors and other impurities.

Spider Plant – A hanging plant that flaunts a welcoming contemporary design is beneficial for filtering carbon monoxide, xylene and formaldehyde.

Plant Feng Shui
Plants symbolizing good fortune and abundance are recommended for living rooms and those that represent health and beauty are beneficial for the bathroom.

An important concept to keep in mind when selecting plants is to balance your space with those that symbolize yin and yang energy. If you are seeking to invite mental stimulation and energy to your room, consider selecting plants that represent yang. These plants display pointy and spiked leaves. Yang plants lend a positive attribute to an office as it promotes the drive of ambition and productivity.

If your vision is to create a more peaceful and relaxed atmosphere, rounded shaped plants with smooth circular leaves representing the yin energy will achieve this mood. Yin plants may be recommended for the bedroom, bath and other areas of the home appointed for relaxation and renewal.

Sharp corners of your room can be softened with the placement of a plant. A tall potted plant with round leaves, as that of scheflera or rubber plant will subdue the effects of energy passing through areas where sharp corners reside. These plants signify the vision of wealth when placed in the “wealth corners” of your room. A philodendron (with its heart shaped leaves) when hung from a corner ceiling balances energy and represents warmth and passion.

If your vision is to attract a new relationship in your life or strengthen an existing one, consider placing a pair of plants in your space. Should you possess the desire to promote luck, bamboo can be the plant to reflect this symbolism. Place tall dried bamboo poles in an urn, or grow green bamboo in a vase of water as elements signifying good luck.

Introduce plant containers in accents that represent your color scheme. Carefully select vases and urns in textures that will complement and/or harmoniously contrast with other textures of elements within your décor. It is important to pay close attention to the size and height of your container to ensure it is in proper balance with the height and width of your plant.

When selecting art of nature, decide on one that will complement your room's design theme as well as provide environmental benefits and symbolism you desire. Art of nature will reflect what you want its symbolism to say about your inner vision.

Vision Journal: In your journal, note the plants you will choose to benefit your lifespace and indicate the benefits they will provide, i.e. health, design theme, decorative accents, etc. How will they symbolize your inner vision?

Inner Vision Board: You can display representation of the art of nature that you propose for your lifespace and notate its corresponding symbolism (in ways it reflects your inner vision).

The Art and Healing of Nature is featured in author's latest book, "Decorating Your Lifespace with Inner Vision - An (52 week) Interactive Journey to Insight, Inspiration & Enlightenment," guides you in designing your home through inner vision with "Free" interactive assistance of an Interior Designer throughout the book!

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Author's Bio: 

Author offers 30 yrs. of residential/commercial interior design experience, written 5 books and numerous columns for int\'l. magazines on the topic of interior design and feng shui with A.S.D. in Interior Design, B.S. Family Counseling, M.A. Counseling & Guidance. Author has lived and practiced her professions in U.S.A., Japan & Europe and has designed Residential Homes, Restaurants, Physicians Offices, Law Firms, Day Care Centers, Retail Operations, Corporate Offices, Education and Church establishments.

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