Keeping houseplants and garden plants looking in tip-top shape year round is extremely time consuming. You need to water, prune, feed, mow, weed, repot, and move things around throughout the year. While houseplants tend to be less labour-intensive than garden plants, they are much more difficult to keep alive! Garden plants will generally look after themselves, especially if the weather isn’t too hot or too cold, but houseplants rely on you to thrive.
Of course, time is money and when it comes to plants, time isn’t the only investment, you’ll inevitably spend plenty of money, too! For many, artificial plants and trees are the natural choice to keep the greenery inside and outside your home and/or business looking its best, no matter the weather or how much time you have to spare.
How Artificial Plants & Trees Help You Save Money at Home
- You can’t kill them
The average person who has houseplants in their home in the UK spends more than £300 a year on them – that’s £25 on plants each month, not including fertilisers or new pots. That amount may not sound like a lot to you (though it may do!), but when you consider that most people kill around 25% of the houseplants they buy, you may see it in a different light!
Artificial plants can’t be killed, and most aren’t easily damaged. That means you can’t accidentally kill a plant in all the most common ways – over or under watering, not enough or too much sunlight, or from failing to invest in a bigger pot. You buy an artificial plant once and enjoy it for the entirety of its useful life.
- You don’t need someone to look after them
Time away is expensive enough without having to pay or bribe a friend or family member to come in and water your plants for you. Sure, you may not mind handing the kid down the road a tenner or buying a bottle of wine for your neighbour, but if you have artificial plants, you won’t have to deal with the logistics. Plus, just to play devil’s advocate for a moment, allowing anyone but you into your home when you’re going to be away for multiple days can also open the door for disaster. You may come home to flooding or to find that someone forgot to lock a door – it’s dramatic, but it is a possibility!
- You don’t need to buy special fertilisers, pesticides, or soils
Unless you have a tropical fish tank (old fish tank water makes a great fertiliser for plants), you need to invest in fertilisers for your houseplants or buy a good quality soil and repot frequently. Most houseplants need to be repotted once a year or so, though they often need repotting sooner than that if you’ve recently bought them and they came with a pot.
Outside, you’re going to need to use some pesticides if you don’t want to lose some of your plants to bugs. Slug pellets will likely be the first thing on your list – slugs and snails can annihilate an entire patch of plants within a few days of being planted if they think it tastes good enough!
It’s also worth mentioning that many of these fertilizers and pesticides contain toxic chemicals that aren’t good for your pets or any little children who may get a hold of them. You can solve this by being diligent about where you keep these liquids, but you’ll need to be careful if you’ve got any little ones (with fur or without!) who may chew on a bottle.
- You don’t need to buy bigger pots
Buying pots and planters is a lot of fun – there are so many designs and colours to choose from nowadays that you really can find anything you desire, but… they can get pretty expensive. While the pot you get for your houseplant when you buy it may cost less than £20, the pots you’ll want and need when it gets bigger will be much more expensive. Plastic pots work, and there are some beautiful plastic pots out there that look like real stone, but if you want glazed ceramic, you need to be ready to part with a chunk of change. And then do so again a year or so later, unless you got a pot your plant could grow into.
Is this the end of the world? No, but if your décor is more important to you than your plants, then it may be a bit of a bummer to find your perfect pot and plant only for both to look completely different 18 months later.
When you use artificial plants for your home, you can buy a pot once for your artificial plant and keep them both for good! You only need to buy a new pot if you fancy a change, and you won’t have to buy bigger and bigger pots and figure out where you’re going to keep them.
- Lower utility bills
Have you ever thought about how much water is required to keep your houseplants and garden looking its best? You may think watering your outdoor plants isn’t necessary here in the UK, but we nearly always have a week or two throughout the summer where the temperatures mean that any plants in direct sunlight start to wither and die without a good drink. Manicured gardens need watering even during dry spells when its cloudy, so keep that in mind.
Your plant collection can also drive up your electricity bills. How? Besides the fact that many intense plant parents will buy special growing bulbs for their rarest houseplants (yes, that’s a thing!), they may encourage you to turn up the heating, invest in a humidifier, or alternatively, their constant need for water will push you to invest in a dehumidifier. These are the kind of small tweaks and additions we don’t think about in terms of power use, but it all adds up!
Artificial plants don’t need any water or power – you can put them away in a box in a cupboard or in the loft and come back to them months later, and they may not even need a dust off!
- Time is money
We all know the saying “time is money”, but it’s important to remember that it’s true – at least as far as equating your time with value. Many people who work for themselves will calculate how much their time is worth. For example, if an hour spent looking after plants could be better spent working or relaxing so you can perform better at work, each hour of your time could be worth a lot!
If you’re not motivated by money, then we can all think of it in terms of time spent over a lifetime. Do you really want to spend on something you don’t enjoy? Say you spend even just an hour a week caring for your house and garden plants – that’s 52 hours a year!
Artificial plants don’t need to take up any of your time – simply dust them off while you’re cleaning your home and they’re good to go!
- No maintenance costs
While you’re probably not paying anyone to come in and maintain your houseplants on a regular basis, gardens, lawns and trees are another story! Trees regularly need pruning back by professionals, especially large trees, which require climbing and traffic control will also be needed if it’s hanging over a road. Those costs can quickly add up!
Another big cost are lawns – we rarely think anything of spending an hour or two mowing the lawn each week or twice a week in the summer (besides how boring it is!), but did you know that the lawn care industry is worth £400M annually in the UK alone? That’s a lot of money spent on lawn care!
Unless you enjoy gardening and have a super green thumb, you probably don’t want to spend your evenings and weekends kneeling in the dirt weeding, turning soil, and pruning plants. There’s no denying that a well-maintained garden is a beautiful sight—they truly are!—but unless you love gardening or are happy to pay a gardener’s fees, a low-maintenance garden filled with mostly or entirely outdoor artificial plants will help you have much easier Sundays!
- Houseplants are expensive
Unless you are restrained and only ever buy discounted houseplants at garden centres and supermarkets that need some TLC to get looking their best, there’s no denying that houseplants are expensive! Most popular houseplants will set you back £25 for a 40-60cm specimen, and much more for a rarer plant or a larger plant.
Did you know that people are paying hundreds of pounds for certain varieties of real houseplants? A mature fiddle leaf fig tree (one of the most popular houseplants at the moment) will cost you between £75 and £200, a 1m tall Philodendron Gloriosum will set you back £600, a Dracaena Song of Jamaica costs £150, a 70cm tall Variegated Monstera will cost you £500, or even £1,000 if you want a bigger one. You certainly don’t want to kill any of those!
- You can put them in storage
So say you do have a green thumb and you are great at growing plants, inside or outside. What do you do if you start running out of space, need to move, or simply want a change? You need to sell, give away, or trade some of your plants. That’s just not the case with artificial plants; if you decide to swap an artificial plant for a new one, want to go travelling, or move house, you can simply box them up, put them in storage, and get them out when you’re ready to display them once again. No repurchasing needed.
How Artificial Plants & Trees Help You Save Money at Work
42% of people enjoy the sight of plants because it helps them to keep a positive outlook, and 45% of people believe the sight of plants improves their concentration. Plants help employees feel calmer and happier throughout the work day and feel a greater sense of wellbeing, one that can quickly be lost if they’re working with the same view everyday or need to work in a dark area. Happy employees are productive employees (and that goes for you, too, solopreneurs and freelancers!) so make sure you invest in employee happiness. Artificial plants are an extremely easy and cost-effective way to brighten any space.
- Fewer sick days
Plants are proven not only to improve people’s mood and productivity levels, but reduce the number of sick days, too. Fortunately, this isn’t isolated to real plants! Sick days cost the UK economy £15B a year, so it’s well worth doing what you can to minimise these costs (without sacrificing employee care). An infusion of artificial plants can help people feel more positive so they will be much less likely to fall sick. Encourage them to open a few windows for better effects. If it’s a communal office and anyone gets cold, simply allow (or buy) them to use blankets.
- Doesn’t take up your time or that of your employees
Plant maintenance takes time, and many large offices have to hire entire companies to maintain the office foliage to keep it happy, watered, and looking its best. A sad, limp, or dying houseplant will negate all those good benefits we just talked about! Even if you take on the work yourself or nominate a few employees to do it for you, it’s not in the job description. Artificial plants can simply be dusted off by your cleaners – just make sure you tell them they’re not real!
- Your revenue may increase
This point is more about how artificial plants can make you money than how they can save you money, but think about it. Happier, more productive employees will help the company make money in a shorter time frame, may encourage clients and customers to work or buy from you more often, and an abundance of plants inside and outside your place of business will help you appear more professional when clients and customers visit, and so be happier to buy from you.
- Only invest once in plant and pot
As we talked about in the sections about saving money with artificial plants at home, you can decorate your place of business with plants and pots once and reap the benefits from them for years to come.
To ensure you see the best return on investment with your artificial plants and trees, make sure you invest in quality. In most cases, artificial plants are cheaper or not much more expensive than their real counterpart, but once you add in all their maintenance needs, artificial plants and trees come out as a clear winner on cost. To browse our range of artificial plants and trees to see how you can apply all these money saving tips to your home or business, click here.