When placed in rooms, plants refresh the indoor environment, relax people's minds, and promote comfort. In anticipation of these effects, plants are becoming more commonly placed in indoor environments such as homes and offices. These effects are known as “green amenity”, and constitute a field in this journal, Science and High Technology in Agriculture. I have been conducting researches on green amenity for over 15 years, and received a prize from the Japanese Society of Environment Control in Biology in 2000 for “Researches on green amenity”.
Green amenity includes the following four effects: thermal regulation and comfort improvement, psychological effects, alleviation and healing of visual fatigue, and air purification. We are conducting experiments and researches on each of these effects. In addition, due to the increasing attention on horticultural therapy, which is primarily used for elderly people, we are also conducting experiments and researches on the psychological effects of horticultural therapy as an applied field of green amenity. In addition, guidelines that meet the increasing demand for comfort at offices are becoming necessary.
Herein, I outline our recent researches on the psychological effects of green amenity as well as their evaluation methods, specifically with regard to the following analyses:1) attachment developing from looking after plants, 2) effects of liking and growing plants on human psychology, 3) effects of growing plants from seedlings and bulbs on the psychology of elderly people, and 4) effects of ornamental foliage plants on the psychology of office workers.