Use of artificial over natural plants …experts express worry

Use of artificial over natural plants …experts express worry

Artificial grass

There is a new phenomenon of artificial plants and trees briskly taking over restaurants and bars.

In an interaction to know the motivation for this trend, two reasons run through most of the conversations which was “easy to maintain and the little or no stress in keeping them.”

The natural plants must be wa­tered sometimes twice a day, pruned from time to time and have fertilizers applied to them occasionally just to mention a few.

A Restaurant Operator who spoke on condition of anonymity to The Spectator on Monday said the use of natural plants was a drain on their finances.

“We pay a gardener and spend so much on watering them, especially, the grass. We hire experts to advise us and several others but with the artifi­cial plants, we do not give them much attention except that we dust them and when very necessary, we re-spray to maintain their colour and appeal,” she disclosed.

An artificial plant in a hotel
An artificial plant in a hotel

She said in place of grass, they had also resorted to the use of carpets which were very economical.

A Florist at the Adjei-Kojo Under­bridge area, Yaw Kissi said as a person with a lot of passion for natural plants, the development breaks his heart.

“Aside taking our jobs from us because they don’t buy our products anymore, they are not helping our so­ciety to combat climate change. Fake plants also attract a lot of dust as compared to natural plants and trees so it is not good for us,” he said.

He said there was the need for an all-hands-on deck approach to address the development urgently to take steps to change the situation “before it got out of hand because we need oxygen.”

Meanwhile, a Research Scientist with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), Dr. Gordon Akon-Yamga has expressed concern about the development.

He said it was a clear indication that much was not known about the benefits of natural plants on the health of people.

He said it was worrying that in an environment which supports the growth of natural plants even if they were placed indoors, the replacement of natural plants with artificial ones leaves much to be desired.

He said aside providing colour to the facility, there was nothing more to it and so it should be discouraged and persons in the hospitality industry educated to use natural plants.

Dr. Akon-Yamga admitted that as compared to natural plants, artificial plants needed little or even no atten­tion and hardly needed a replacement but natural plants have enormous health benefits.

He said in terms of carbon seques­tration, the trees take up the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and make it safe for humans.

He said natural plants purified the air around us as they absorbed a lot of pollutants and also reduces dust into such premises.

He called on regulatory bodies of the hospitality industries to educate the operators to replace the artificial plants with natural ones.

 From Dzifa Tetteh Tay, Tema

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