Patients' recovery experiences of indoor plants and viewsof nature in a rehabilitation center

Work. 2015;53(1):45-55. doi: 10.3233/WOR-152214.


Background: There is an increasing interest in the possible healing factors connected to the presence of nature elements in health institutions.

Objective: The aim of the present study is to get a deeper understanding of how residents in a residential rehabilitation center experience the views through windows and the indoor plants, and whether and how the view and the plants can impact their recovery process.

Methods: In-depth individual and group interviews were conducted among 16 residents at a rehabilitation center in Norway.

Results: The participants said that the indoor plants and the view of nature were pleasant to look at and elicited feelings of relaxation and positive emotions which contributed to opportunities for reflection and contemplation. They expressed a feeling of connectedness to nature: a feeling of wholeness and spirituality elicited by the nature elements. They also expressed that the presence of nature elements contributed to a sense of being taken care of.

Conclusions: The nature elements, such as a view of nature or indoor plants, seem to enhance opportunities for reflection, feelings of meaningfulness and sense of being taken care of which may strengthen their feeling of well-being and make them more resilient to the stressors in life.

Keywords: Healing environment; interior plants; restoration; window view.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Attitude
  • Emotions
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interior Design and Furnishings*
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nature*
  • Plants*
  • Rehabilitation Centers*
  • Relaxation / psychology
  • Residential Facilities