Tuesday, May 02, 2006

May Office Plant of the Month – Peace Lily

Peace lilies, or Spathiphyllum, are one of the most fool-proof plants you can get for the office. Perfect for a shady desk corner or under those lovely artificial lights, it will thrive so long as it’s out of direct sun light. If you forget to water this plant over a long weekend, don’t worry, it will quickly recover and bounce back to it’s forgiving self. A healthy plant should have dark green leaves and will reward you with large white flowers. If you’re not sure what the peace lily looks like, I’m sure you can look around your office to find some. The peace lily is an office planter favorite.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Mystique of the Chia Pet

If you have never received a Chia Pet during a holiday gift swap or as a gag, you are really missing out. The Chia Pet is a classic not only because it comes in 10 pet and 4 head versions, but because it is also incredibly fun to watch as it grows into a beautiful clown on kitten. If nothing else, it’s great for a good laugh as you try to pawn if off on another unsuspecting relative or coworker.

When looking at the FAQ’s I found a particularly funny excerpt explaining why they only appear during the gag gift season of the year, “Chia Pets and Chia Heads are handmade pottery items. It takes an entire year to produce enough Pets and Heads for one holiday season.” Are we to believe that the Santa’s little elves only manufacture and then market these once a year? Quite odd.
But there is also a rich history behind the Chia Pet. This fine product comes from the makers of the Clapper, Joseph Enterprises, Inc.

But what if you get stuck with one of these rare pets? Why not try to grow it as your desk? It can’t hurt and it really adds to the ambience I’m sure you’ve already cultivated in your cube or office.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Earth Day - April 22, 2006

Happy Earth Day! Do something good with a plant in or outside of the office. Need ideas? Take a look at these sites that have plenty of great suggestions on what you can do.


Sick Building Syndrome

I had mentioned Sick Building Syndrom in a previous posting and I wanted to investigate this a little more in depth. There is a lot of information floating around the web on the topic and many groups highlight the benefits of plants in relation to SBS. To get the most accurate information I thought I’d share the straight source from the EPA. For some background on the condition, I’m including this excerpt from their site:

“The term "sick building syndrome" (SBS) is used to describe situations in which building occupants experience acute health and comfort effects that appear to be linked to time spent in a building, but no specific illness or cause can be identified. The complaints may be localized in a particular room or zone, or may be widespread throughout the building. In contrast, the term "building related illness" (BRI) is used when symptoms of diagnosable illness are identified and can be attributed directly to airborne building contaminants.

A 1984 World Health Organization Committee report suggested that up to 30 percent of new and remodeled buildings worldwide may be the subject of excessive complaints related to indoor air quality (IAQ). Often this condition is temporary, but some buildings have long-term problems. Frequently, problems result when a building is operated or maintained in a manner that is inconsistent with its original design or prescribed operating procedures. Sometimes indoor air problems are a result of poor building design or occupant activities.”