Healthy Family: 5 Ways Vertical Green Walls Improve Your Family's Health


The first modern day green, or living wall has been credited to a French botanist named Patrick Blanc, though the overall concept has been in vogue for hundreds of years. These beautiful works of art can be found in both commercial and residential spaces and depending on climate, indoors or out. When it comes to your home, a vertical green wall can give you years of enjoyment while improving your family’s health; here’s how.

1. Improved indoor air quality. Your home is comprised of an abundance of materials, many of which contain volatile organic compounds (VOC’s) as do many of the objects within. Items such as carpeting, grocery bags, cigarette smoke, plywood and certain fabrics can emit gases such as benzene, formaldehyde or trichloroethylene which can contribute to health issues. Lower concentrations may cause:

  • Dizziness
  • Eye, nose or throat irritation
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Skin conditions

In higher concentrations symptoms may include:

  • Damage to vital organs
  • Damage to the central nervous system
  • Lung irritation

The evolution of building materials has led to tighter construction, and with this reduction in the volume of air that is exchanged VOC’s remain trapped inside. Fortunately plants are capable of removing airborne toxins, filtering and purifying the air you breathe.

2. Humidification. Approximately 90 percent of the water absorbed by a plants root system is released into the air through a process known as transpiration. The water travels up through the roots to the leaves and escapes through tiny holes on the surface as water vapor. This process is particularly beneficial during the winter months when your heating system is pumping warm dry air into your living space.

Dry air can cause irritation to the skin, eyes and mucous membranes resulting in respiratory issues, nosebleeds and dehydration. A green wall is a great way to restore and control the humidity levels in your home.

3. Stress reduction. Plants have been shown to create a sense of well-being and overall calm. Office and hospital environments with indoor landscaping report a faster rate of healing, increased productivity levels and a reduction in blood pressure levels.

In geographical locations with particularly long winters, or when the days become shorter, those that suffer from seasonal affective disorder (SAD) can benefit from a living green wall, by solving one of the most recognized primal needs: to experience living, green foliage even in the deep of winter.

4. Sound absorption. Much the same way that plants, trees and hedges have been used as sound barriers in outdoor applications, an indoor living wall can help filter noise pollution both in and outside your living space. Traditional building materials reflect or bounce sound waves as do other solid materials in a room. Plant material helps to absorb sound levels from within, and insulate your home against outside noise and vibrations.

5. Oxygenation. As humans we breathe in oxygen and expel carbon dioxide while plants do the opposite. The benefits of increased levels of oxygen are clear:

  • Increased energy levels.
  • Heightened alertness and concentration.
  • A strengthened immune system.
  • Improved digestion and metabolism.

A vertical green wall is a great way to bring the outdoors in to your home, adding beauty while helping to improve the overall health of your family.