Feng Shui began in China with a very practical purpose finding
auspicious places (i.e., not a flood plain) for houses and villages.
Over the centuries, feng shui expanded from placing villages to
placing just about everything.
According to feng shui, everything around us possesses vital energy.
This energy circulates through buildings and can effect our daily
lives. Surround yourself with the angular, decrepit furniture your
parents owned before their divorce and you might be setting yourself
up for a bumpy ride. Surround yourself with beautiful, comfortable
things and you create a nurturing environment that supports and
If all things possess energy, then things that photosynthesize
must possess a great deal of energy, and this is why houseplants
are one of the most common feng shui enhancements. Plants connect
us with the natural world. A dwelling without plants can create
a subtle unease as we feel estranged from the world around us.
Plants to Use
From a feng shui perspective, the best plants are those with round
or soft leaves. Spiky plants that bite when you touch them are not
encouraged, unless you have a particularly strong love for them.
Another feng shui can of worms is sick or dying plants. A sick
plant is worse than no plant at all. If you cant bring yourself
to toss out a plant as soon as it begins to droop, al least keep
all dead leaves trimmed off. And know when to give up and admit
that your plant is not going to bounce back to health dont wait
until its a brown stick in a pot. For this same reason, get rid
of cut flowers as soon as they begin to fade.
Where to Put Plants
First impressions are important. What you see when you enter your
abode sets the tone for the rest of your stay. But many of us dont
have a front door opening into an opulent foyer. This is an excellent
place to make use of the energy a plant can bring. Try something
with pizzazz, like a flowering plant or a creative arrangement.
It doesnt have to be large, but it should draw your eye.
Western architecture loves angles, but in the East corners are
considered offensive. The sharp corners of tables and counters shoot
out energy. If youve ever walked into the corner of a coffee table,
youll understand why sharp corners are so threatening, in practice
and symbolically. If youre not ready to toss out that antique table,
drape a trailing plant over the edge. The plant lends a more natural,
organic shape and hides the sharp corner from view.
The corners of rooms are dumping grounds for stagnant energy. Energy
should flow freely through a room, but often when it reaches a corner
it pools up and decays. A tall plant in an empty corner keeps the
energy flowing smoothly. For added emphasis, point a grow light
at the plant.
If you ever feel like your computer is staring at you, it probably
is. Electrical equipment gives off a great deal of energy and can
be quite insistent. If you find the stereo display drawing your
attention when youre trying to entertain guests, you might want
to screen it from view. Plants are an easy way to do this without
investing in new furniture. You can also place a plant in front
of the television. The plant is easy to move when you want to watch
TV, and screens it from view when you want to chat.
When it comes down to it, the best way to enhance your homes feng
shui with houseplants is simply to have them.
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