Photo Essay: Hawaiian Grown Orchids

hawaii-orchid-collageOrchids are an amazing family of plants all belonging to the Orchidacaeae family which is recognized as the most diverse plant family in the world. The family of Orchids is incredibly vast, consisting of over 800 genera and over 20,000 known species! Orchid species are found throughout the world on every continent except Antarctica.

Orchids are famous for a variety of reasons, perhaps most notably their unique flowers. Most people are familiar with Phalaenopsis orchids (aka Moth Orchids). The immaculate blooms of Phalaenopsis orchids are very striking and come in a variety of colors. Although they look very delicate, they can actually perform quite well indoors. Read More »

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5 Flowers that Look Like Fireworks

Ambius Fireworks Flowers CoverIt’s that time of year. The time of year when we celebrate the fact that it’s mid-summer by blowing up big colorful things in the air and ooh and aahh at them on our picnic blankets. It’s Independence Day time in the United States and that means fireworks and picnics and time spent with family while picnicking and watching fireworks.

Man has certainly done a great job of dazzling up the night using gunpowder mixed with various colors. When the fireworks experts pack that gunpowder and the various explosive charges they do so in very specific ways to create the spectacular shapes that you see. However, nature, as always, has a fireworks show going on all the time.

In order to celebrate Independence Day, here are five flowers that look a lot like fireworks. Read More »

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Biophilic Design: The Secret to Creating a Better Workspace

office-plants-boardroom-windowsCompanies want to increase their employee productivity and creativity to gain that all-important advantage over competitors. Many businesses are looking at ways to make the office space more productive and creative by improving the mental health and overall well being of their employees.

Studies have shown that people have an innate desire to be part of nature in some way. Whether it’s being able to view nature scenes out a window, access to live office plants inside their office, or access to natural light, our bodies and minds crave a sense of oneness with nature. This is an area of study known as biophilia.

One of the leading organizations in promoting biophilic living is nature-minded carpet tile designer and maker, Interface. Interface recently launched a website dedicated to biophilic designer called Human Spaces. They study offices, companies and workers from around the world and compile evidence that bringing nature into the built environment has many benefits. Read More »

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Indoor Plants That Need Very Little Water

Plants That Need Very Little WaterWater conservation is a serious issue in many parts of the country, particularly in the western US. California is amidst one of the state’s worst droughts in history. One way of saving water is by using plants that naturally require less water than others. Plants like these can be used for both the exterior and interior of the home. For indoor plants, there’s a wide range of such plants to choose from.

Before we discuss the wide variety of low-water plants, it’s important to talk about proper care. Although these plants are “low-water” it doesn’t imply they never need water. They still need to be watered, albeit less often and typically in lesser amounts. Read More »

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A Successful Atrium Takes a Professional

Atrium full of plants

You spend a lot of money making the building look beautiful. You hire the best architect, the best interior designer in town to make your space attractive for customers and employees.

You choose the right furniture for the lobby, select special artwork for the walls of your hallways. The windows are just right, the brick is just right, the tile on the floor is just right. Then you turn to the pride and joy of your new building: the atrium. Read More »

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