"The goal of life is to make your heartbeat match the beat of the universe, to match your nature with Nature." - Joseph Campbell
What role do plants play in Feng Shui?
Plants are living. And life fuels a healthy home. In broad strokes, Feng Shui is a rhythmic practice of replacing heavy energy with fresh, light energy. Plants absolutely support this practice: cleaning the air, vibrating with growth, bringing the natural world indoors - and looking lovely to boot.
How can you incorporate plants into your Feng Shui practice?
To be blunt, I have yet to work with a client who does not desire more love and more money. Plants are a Feng Shui heavy hitter, for they are a physical embodiment of the material elements correlated with the Love Zones (EARTH Element) and the Wealth Zones (WOOD Element) on the Bagua, which is the Feng Shui floor plan map.
Taking the time to shop for an epic houseplant, to nestle it into a cool pot (glazed terracotta for more EARTH Element) and to place it auspiciously will absolutely change the imprint of your home.
Yet before you go through this effort, remove all dried or faux flora from your home. We want the real deal. In our bed, in our bank account. Not an idea of the real deal.
What are some plants to avoid in Feng Shui and why?
I am a big believer in “you do you.” Let us strike the duality of right or wrong when it comes to Feng Shui. Cacti get a bad rap, yet they can be wonderful sentinels of protection or emblems of a dreamy desert landscape, when properly placed. Feng Shui is truly case specific, a beautiful blend of the home’s needs and the human’s desires.
What are some ideal plants to incorporate and why?
In my private practice, I advocate for geometric, lush and large plants for my clientele, for that symbolism corresponds nicely to their aspirations. Venture to a local nursery and really spend time asking questions and making decisions. I prefer statements as opposed to collections: why have seven little plastic pots on a bench when you could have a pair of Kentia Palms anchoring your living room? Bold statements are declarative: This is what I want!
This is where I’m going! It is empowering to walk into a room and be visually reminded of your aspirations.
How does the Feng Shui Map dictate where the plants should go?
The Feng Shui floor plan map is called a Bagua. The way I interpret Feng Shui, the Bagua is oriented from your front door, and then divides your home into nine equally sized zones called ‘guas.’ Each gua has an assigned name, individualized essence, material element correlation, and defined color palette.
Your front door will open into your home from WISDOM, LIFE PATH or ATTRACTION, based on the symmetry of your entrance. From there, walk to the very back left corner of the home to find ABUNDANCE; walk to the very back right corner to find LOVE. Plants work beautifully in both of these guas, as well as the others indicated on the cheat sheet below:
I have highlighted the five best places for plants on your floor plan. Choose the sunniest zone(s) that appeal to your aesthetic and go forth.
When welcoming the plants into your space, are there any rituals you should consider?
Ritual is so personal. Personally, I advise the ritual of conscious consumerism, a pause before a buy. Thinking through: Where would this plant live and why? Asking: Would open space serve me more than another possession?
When a plant dies in your space, is there anything you should do before removing it?
Plants often take a hit for the household, as they are very sensitive. If you have an unhealthy plant, which you have been unable to nurse back to life, thank it and take it out to the green bin pronto. Do not let it linger on your back steps. I have cleared away more than a few ‘plant hospitals’. So depressing. I suggest a Salt Burn to clear the air where a plant has died, particularly important before plugging in a replacement.
Any magic tricks?
Here’s my favorite Feng Shui plant hack to call in a new LOVER:
1. Head to your LOVE gua (the furthest back, most right corner of your home)
2. Open up Space to Breathe - eliminate clutter and bulkiness however possible
3. Add a pair of plants, one more yin in appearance and one more yang, to activate the delicious polarity of strong sexual attraction
4. Get ready to rumble...