Virginia I. Lohr and Caroline H. Pearson-Mims
Physical discomfort may be reduced in the presence of interior plants
This experiment was designed to examine the role of
responses to physical discomfort. Subjects were
to a treatment room with plants, colorful objects, or
Each was asked to place his or her hand in ice water and
if it was uncomfortable. Subjects were also asked
of the treatment room.
(Click on photo for a larger version.)
We found that more subjects were willing to keep a hand submerged in ice water for 5 minutes if they were in a room with plants present than if they were in a room without plants. This was found to be true even when the room without plants had other colorful objects that might help the subject focus on something other than the discomfort. Results from a room assessment survey confirmed that the room with colorful, non-plant objects was as interesting and colorful as the room with plants present, but the presence of plants was perceived as making the air in the room fresher.
Lohr, V.I. and C.H. Pearson-Mims. 2000. Physical discomfort may be reduced in the presence of interior plants. HortTechnology 10(1):53-58.
Lohr, V.I. and C.H. Pearson-Mims. 2008. People's response to
discomfort in the presence of interior plants or art.
Acta Horticulturae 790:173-178.
Lohr (E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Caroline H. Pearson-Mims (E-mail: email@example.com)
Department of Horticulture
Washington State University
Pullman, Washington 99164-6414 U.S.A.
Updated April 5, 2013