You may not know what Feng Shui is, or its purpose. It is the ancient Chinese art of arranging buildings, objects, and space to achieve harmony and balance in a way that will bring peace and prosperity. Feng Shui divides the world into five elements: wood, fire, earth, metal and water. If you have a room that doesn't feel quite right, try balancing the elements to make it more comfortable. Each element invokes a different mood, creating a customised space that's beneficial for your personality and goals.

There are ten Feng Shui rules for a serene home – declutter, use soft colours, add plants, use strategic lighting, create a focal point, incorporate water elements, choose comfortable furniture, avoid bedroom clutter, creature a peaceful outdoor space, and add natural textures.

The rules don’t have a particular order, but I would like to focus on plants, some in particular that can be added to help add abundance and ward off negative energies.

Basil is one of the plants with the greatest capacity to generate abundance. In addition to its power to ward off bad energies, it is widely used in rituals of prosperity, fortune and good luck, as well as in energy cleansing baths. Some people even add it to bundles of herbs used in smudging rituals. Smudging is a purposeful burning of herbs and using the smoke to cleanse or change the energy of a specific space. Usually used are sage, cedar, and sweetgrass - and you can add in basil.

Basil needs a lot of sunshine and water. You don’t want to drown it, just make sure it is always well hydrated. Keep it near your kitchen or dining room, and purchase new ones as needed. In addition to its Feng Shui benefits, you’ll want to cook with it too.

Jasmine is a hardy plant; you can have it in your garden in direct sunlight though it can also survive in the shade. Feng Shui recommends that you nurture and care for it, as it represents economic success. If you don't have time to grow or care for a plant, you can add fresh jasmine to flower arrangements, and they say it is very important to have jasmine flowers in your home on the first day of the year.

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Chinese Money Plant. In Feng Shui the Pilea peperomiodes, also known by the common name Chinese Money Plant, is a plant favourite when it comes to attracting good luck and prosperity.

It brings life and freshness to a space, while also purifying the air. Its name refers to its ability, according to feng shui, to attract fortune—provided you care for it. The plant needs light, low humidity, and regular watering so that it does not lose its leaves and fresh appearance. They are ideally placed near the entrance or by the windows.

Bamboo - We are talking about lucky bamboo, not common bamboo or brazilwood. The variety of bamboo that Feng Shui recommends is Dracaena sanderiana, which bears leaves when it is cared for and it attracts good luck and positive energy. It is also capable of generating an atmosphere of calm. The plant is very simple to care for if you keep two simple tips in mind. It needs lots of sunlight and the substance it is planted in—whether water, water beads, or soil—must always be clean. Algae and other substances can disrupt their growth. In addition to taking care of its hygiene, you will want to keep the plant away from arguments and fights, as they are very sensitive plants when it comes to conflict. Feng Shui experts suggest placing bamboo in the main room of a house or in the entrance hall.

Given that the plants described here are relatively easy to care for, they’ll provide additional benefits according to Feng Shui, and you won’t regret inviting them into your space.

Beyond these plants’ abilities to attract abundance, fortune, and good luck, Feng Shui teachings also describe them as capable of cleansing a home of bad energies while protecting it when new people and different energies enter it.


Marilyn writes regularly for The Portugal News, and has lived in the Algarve for some years. A dog-lover, she has lived in Ireland, UK, Bermuda and the Isle of Man. 

Marilyn Sheridan