Lauren Carlstrom, O+ Team Member |
We recently moved Oxygen Plus’s worldwide headquarters, and thus, had the chance to redesign our office layout and overall look and feel. It didn’t take long to pick the wall colors: Gray and yellow – colors that align with our brand and evoke a sense of a calming balance and productive optimism, respectively. It also wasn’t hard to make the decision to dedicate an entire room to what’s called, the “O+ Relaxation Room” – a concept inspired by Arianna Huffington. O+ team members can take a breather with or without our options of supplemental oxygen machines throughout the workday. Sometimes I take a moment to rest my eyes while listening to the waves of a sound machine or engage in five minutes of “box breathing” to restore my mental prowess.
What took the most time to plan, and source, was the new addition of what we consider magical plants. The plants we wanted were not just any plants. The special plants Oxygen Plus wanted are proven to combat toxins commonly found in indoor air (Seaman). NASA-conducted studies have identified a handful of green friends that help combat exposure to potentially harmful toxins. These plants work by absorbing their gases and cleaning the air at work, home, factories, retail outlets and other indoor public spaces.
As you may know, pollution isn’t always visible to the naked eye. Indoor toxins commonly found in indoor environments are invisible to the human eye and nose. These invisible pollutants, which include formaldehyde, Volatile Organic Compounds (benzene and trichloroethylene), airborne biological pollutants, carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxides, pesticides and disinfectants (phenols), and radon can cause health issues with symptoms such as allergies, headaches, fatigue, cancer, and even death (Seaman).
NASA scientists have identified 50 houseplants, rating them, Seaman notes, “…based on a plant’s ability to remove chemical vapors or indoor air toxins, ease of growth and maintenance, resistance to insect infestation, and the rate at which water evaporates from the leaves.” While not an exhaustive list, here are the plants from the NASA-tested Top Ten list we welcomed into our new Oxygen Plus home:
Willow + Bloom Design Consultants – a Minneapolis-based green space interior design company known for the integration of social, fiscal and environmental values through artful and practical design for homes and offices – executed Oxygen Plus’s pollution-fighting plant integration. John Collins, Founder and Owner of Willow + Bloom, was drawn to O+’s congruency with a “clean air office” and its “pure oxygen products.” Collins remarks, “The art of design is to be courageous in stretching the norm and creative in order to reinforce a company’s branding, which in the case of Oxygen Plus, is a pure, portable oxygen that provides healthy people natural energy and recovery.” Collins explains, “Inspiration for this project came from the idea of including toxin-purifying plants that would reduce any toxins emitted from everyday plastics and office residue while also helping improve employee moods and daily outlook through the warmth and beauty of the plants.”
A pollution-busting plant graces each office and the fauna is located throughout Oxygen Plus’s corporate headquarters. As a finishing touch, Willow + Bloom created custom placards highlighting each plant’s special purifying powers.
Grateful for the aesthetic beauty and oxygen that the plants emit, they serve as yet another reminder to the O+ team of Oxygen Plus’s commitment to help solve the global air quality crisis. Similar to how plants thrive, we’re aiming to make an impact one deep respiration at a time.
Seaman, Greg. The Top 10 Plants for Removing Indoor Toxins. https://learn.eartheasy.com/articles/the-top-10-plants-for-removing-indoor-toxins. September 6, 2017. Retrieved December 20, 2018.