How Green Plants Can Make your Open Office Noise-Clean
You might not know this but noise affects more than just your peace. The human ear functions astoundingly well in picking sound range. This is quite useful since you will need it to hear an approaching car hooting so that you can get off the road. Nonetheless, research has determined that the measure of sound into an ear from a normal conversation is 60 decibels (dB). Therefore anything above this is noise. However, that is not the only noise you should worry about.
According to research findings from the University of Michigan
, prolonged exposure to at least 50 dB of sound affects your body the same way noise does. These effects include causing stress, headache, increasing your blood pressure, irritability, fatigue, and even putting you at risk of experiencing a heart attack.
Surprisingly, a lot of people are constantly exposed to noise pollution without even realising it.
What Causes Noise Pollution?
Internal office noise also includes the sounds that you experience and sometimes ignore everyday. These sounds can be distant and not so distant conversations, the copier machine whirring, door hinges creaking, the air conditioner humming, papers rustling and that sound of music from your colleague’s computer constantly playing videos from YouTube. Individuals working in an open office layout, which is a common office landscape design, are mostly affected by these sources of noise pollution among others.
But that is not all. There are also external causes which persist that we hardly have any control over. The ones commonly experienced include; ongoing constructions with loud drills and electrical generators, social events, not forgetting urban transportation with hooting cars and running engines constantly disturbing the peace.
With all these sound distractions causing noise pollution, affecting your concentration, disrupting your communication within the workspace, and to top it all, affecting your health and productivity would become a tall order.
So how do you counter all these to become productive in an environment with so many noise pollutants that you have no control over? Well, you control the office environment by designing it.
How to Design Your Office against Noise Pollution using Landscape Designs
Noise distractions alone are a major inhibition to the productivity of any workforce. Noise pollution and all the effects it comes with including health factors make the problem even more profound. But by adopting a landscape design that counters the noise pollution
, you can look forward to more productive days at the office.
Here are some measures you can take towards that effect.
Sound-friendly furniture - The acoustics of a room are greatly dependent on the furniture that the room is furnished with. Think of it in the sense of how an empty room gets an echo compared to a filled room. Getting couches, a lounge chair, filing cabinets and even wall partition for your office space greatly reduces noise pollution.
White noise - This is the strategy of fighting noise with noise which by the sound of it is not ideal but in reality works like a charm. It entails controlling the background noise using a consistent ambient sound that is more appealing than distracting.
Quiet space - The office layout could include a dedicated quiet space which is enclosed and furnished. This gives staff a space away from all the madness to get a little peace of mind so that they can come back more refreshed and be more productive.
Noise canceling flooring - Hard floors can be chaos when it comes to causing noise pollution especially in an open office layout. However, setting up your office landscape design with carpets or vinyl flooring offers an excellent sound canceling alternative. So everyone does not have to look up each time someone walks into or out of the room.
Other tips you can try is by using ear buds or noise canceling headphones, but they are not as efficient as we would want them to be. There is, however, a tried and tested solution that works effectively on a larger scale. A simple solution involves going green with indoor plants.
Why Go Green?
You can never go wrong when you go green to fight noise pollution
in your space. This is because they will not only counter the noise with their natural structures but also use their anatomy to create a more conducive environment by providing air conditioning, and improved air quality. How do they control noise pollution you wonder? Here is how:
Sound absorption - The surface area of plants provides them with the ability to alter the reverberation time of sound. By doing this, plants are able to use their stems and leaves to absorb noise.
Sound deflection - Sound travels in waves which bounce on a rigid surface to cause noise, but with green walls the sound waves hit a flexible surface and the plant material vibrates instead to deflect and convert the sound energy into a different form.
Sound refraction - The flexibility of plant surfaces also come into play when it comes to the refraction of sound so it is refracted instead unlike the bouncing it would have done on a rigid wall surface, hence canceling the noise.
Indoor Office Plants for You
There is a variety of indoor plants whose structure makes them ideal in absorbing sound and canceling noise. For this function, both living and artificial plants perform quite efficiently. So to save on the general maintenance cost, you could go full artificial or blend both living and artificial plants
to get the best of both worlds. Whichever way you choose to go, here are some examples of indoor greeneries that would be idyllic for your office landscape design.
The Weeping Fig
The Weeping Fig is a popular indoor plant in the world, which originates from South East Asia, more specifically India. It is quite the noise absorber with its large spread out leaves and arching branches. Its leaves are also quite thick which adds to the cause. Ficus Benjamina (its scientific name) also comes with great air purification qualities as it uses its big thick leaves to filter your indoor air. It, however, needs fertiliser to keep those leaves healthy and in shape.
Fiddle Leaf Fig
This is another popular one which is quite efficient in sound absorption and noise cancellation on account of its humongous leaves especially for an indoor plant. This one is however a little tricky to maintain since it requires a more humid and brightly lit environment, but due to its structural efficiency in curbing noise pollution, it has artificial options which you can take up fully or blend with the natural thing.
The Money Tree is not known for its big leaves. In fact, its leaves are relatively small, but it makes up for it by its bushy nature which still provides a wide flexible surface to absorb, deflect and refract noise. With this one, over watering is to be completely avoided to avoid rotting.
Norfolk Island Pine
Its rough bark stem steps in to help reduce noise pollution on account of its tiny but numerous leaves. The good thing about this one is that it is quite easy to maintain with just a little misting and a little light.
Get your free consultation from Planters
Noise pollution is a productivity stealer especially in an open plan office, but you don’t have to suffer from it, nor your team. Once you adopt a greener office landscape design with the aid of expert indoor landscape contractors, you can be assured of a healthy and functional work environment that would be ideal in boosting your productivity significantly. If you prefer to get artificial plants for this purpose, contact us
today for consultation.