There are a million reasons why we can all benefit from a calmer mind these days. Life seems out of control and unfamiliar in recent months. At times like this, it is important to make time for activities that make us whole and relieve stress. We can't think of a better way to stay "grounded" than to plant a garden.
Growing gardens, big or small, allows us to reconnect to life and the earth. Not only does the act of growing gardens calm and center us, but reaping the benefits of our labor is satisfying as well. If you have any interest in gardening, we encourage you to start today. Whether you grow a butterfly garden or a quarter-acre plot of vegetables, the mental health benefits from growing gardens is undeniable.
Growing Gardens Connects Us to Nature
Research has shown that spending time in nature has the following benefits:
- Improves attention and focus
- Physically relaxes your body
- Rejuvenates your mood
In one study, participants were asked to perform a stressful activity. Immediately following, they were asked to either garden for 30 minutes or read a book for 30 minutes. Both groups of participants experienced a decline in stress levels, but the gardeners experienced a greater decline in stress and improvement in mood.
Spending a bit of time outdoors each day allows our bodies to soak up some vitamin D and breathe in the fresh air. Growing gardens provides the motivation to get outdoors each day to check on your lovely plants and tend to them.
Tending to a Garden is Repetitive
Dig, rake, weed, water, repeat. Many lawn care activities are repetitive, similar to mantras or meditative music. Many times gardeners develop yoga-like breathing while in their gardens. Repetition, especially when paired with nature, can stimulate body systems that counteract physiological changes caused by stress. Gardening can lead to an improved and calmer you!
Growing Gardens Is Satisfying
We start with a plot of dirt. We nurture the soil, add seeds, nurture some more, and then we experience a miracle. The first sprouts, blooms, and harvests are nothing short of miraculous. I will never forget the feeling of pride and satisfaction I felt when I presented a salad of fresh garden greens to my family at dinner time.
If you are growing a butterfly garden, your first sighting of a butterfly enjoying the flowers you grew is energizing. The beauty added to your home with fresh flowers from your garden is indescribable. Biting into your first fresh tomato is exhilarating. It all begins with growing a garden.
Start Growing Your Garden Today
Evaluate the amount of space you have and the amount of time you have to dedicate to your garden and get started. Use the Gardening Binder to help you:
- Map out your garden
- Set gardening goals
- Track your planting
- Record your harvest
- Organize and schedule gardening tasks
- Create seasonal to-do lists
Once you get started, you will discover all of the ways that growing gardens can bring peace and relieve stress!