The countdown to the nation’s favourite garden show is nearly up as botanical growers of every kind prepare for the RHS Chelsea Flower show next week. The show attracts 165,000 visitors each year (which is capped). Keen to attract more visitors through their own doors, the love for all things green is growing amongst retailers.
The popularity of plants within retail spaces has spiked
The green revolution has made its mark in architectural design for some time but, until recently, retailers have been slow to catch on. It’s fair to say that there’s always been something of a drought in support for the idea of ‘greening’ stores – primarily due to the operational need for store teams to care for and maintain them.
But recently there has been a noticeable change, with many stores being transformed by a host of botanical offerings. On our recent global travels, it’s clear that the popularity of plants within retail spaces has spiked. Plants of all shapes and sizes are being used to add a very evident kind of green backdrop and foliage landscape in stores around the world – New York to Madrid, London to Montreal, and in all kinds of stores. From Abercrombie and Apple, to Max Mara, Muy Mucho and Mango.
As well as helping to ‘domesticise’, humanise and soften retail spaces, biophilic design is seen as a means of creating living, breathing sensory experiences in which, crucially, shoppers will want to dwell, and spend more money.
But these seeds of change could deliver much wider benefits. As well as adding fresh visual appeal, in reality, this latest trend is also a great way to convey the message of being ‘earth conscious’, with or without necessarily having a stated commitment from a corporate perspective.
Research from Exeter University also suggests that being surrounded by greenery makes employees more psychologically engaged, aids memory retention, and can boost productivity by 15 per cent. For retailers keen to also transform store team performance, green creativity could add up to a ‘win-win’.
In our special Facebook gallery, we pay tribute to the retailers who are turning plants into a key design feature. View more images, here