The importance of gardening cannot be stressed enough. The many positives accompanying this activity have led to more people engaging in it in recent years. Even Millenials, who were regarded as a generation that cared less about the environment, have stepped up, and become the forerunners in this.
Astronauts are growing lettuce in space to study how gardening occurs outside the Earth. If all of this isn’t evidence that gardening is on an exponential rise, then we don’t know what is. With that being said, though the activity has had increased participation in recent years, there is still a lack of awareness about gardening and its benefits.
What is Gardening?
Gardening simply refers to the planting of flowers, vegetables, or herbs either for personal or commercial use. The history of gardening can be traced way back to the 16th century BC, where Egyptian tombs show evidence of such horticulture. With such a rich history, gardening has evolved over the years and has even become a form of art. Gardens tend to be very dependent on climatic conditions and other environmental factors. Different types of gardens exist depending on the environment.
Some of the types of possible gardens:
- Flower gardens
- Vegetable and Herb gardens
- Water gardens
- Rock gardens
- Specialty gardens
Benefits of Gardening
Improves the body and mind
Possibly, the most important reason for the rise in gardening over the last decade is due to the many positive effects on the health of the body and mind. The activity is very effective in alleviating stress and improving mental health. People suffering from high blood pressure, stress-related or heart issues are often encouraged to pick activities to destress, of which gardening is the most recommended.
Home gardening isn’t easy and is a great form of physical exercise. Digging, planting plants, removing weeds, trimming, raking a garden, and tending to a landscape are all calorie-burning activities, not to mention the continuous bending and standing which requires energy. At the end of a session, a total calorie burn of 500 is easily achievable.
A recent report in The Guardian has stated that one of the benefits of gardening is that it also helps in fighting depression. Trusts like the Sydenham Garden charity trust are paving the way for green therapy. Doctors all over the world are recommending that people suffering from many forms of depression, enroll in green therapy, before starting on any medications.
Medications have side effects, but gardening doesn’t. Considering that approximately 260 million people suffer from depression, the need for such an activity cannot be understated. It’s also been shown to lower blood pressure too and the sense of community with other gardeners can be helpful to a person’s mental health.
The social benefits of working together in a community garden can also aid in the mental health of many gardeners. This was especially true during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is also a good idea for those with limited space.
Helps the Environment and Wildlife
Climate change is another issue that is causing widespread panic and for good reason. For hundreds of centuries before the Industrial Revolution, the level of atmospheric CO2 on this planet was well below 300 ppm.
Ever since then, it has been on a rise, and it currently stands at around 410 ppm. Deforestation, a lack of plants along with the increased emissions of greenhouse gases is damaging nature and our natural environment at an alarming rate.
This makes saving our planet increasingly difficult with each passing day. Gardening is a small step that can have a huge positive impact on both the land environment and the wildlife living within it. Grab your shovel, grow some plants and start digging our way out of this mess that we created. Let’s improve our future and save our planet, we only have one!
Creates Healthy Food
Another great benefit of gardening is the increased production of healthy food. The amount of chemicals being pumped into and sprayed on the produce, that we call “fresh”, is alarming. The main reason for this is because of the farmer’s inability to cater to the entire population.
If more households took to vegetable gardens and produced at least some portion of their diet, it will allow farmers to grow vegetables, herbs, plants, and fruits more organically. Growing fresh produce at your place will also lower the monthly expense and lowers the risk of foot shortages.
As the demand for vegetables grown by farmers reduces, the cost will also decline. With healthier food, cheaper products, and no chemicals, gardening is truly a win-win situation.
Increased Property Value
A less obvious benefit of gardening is the increase in the value of the property. A well-maintained garden is also a sign of healthy soil. This makes the property more valuable. If one has plans on selling the property, maintaining a garden with proper landscaping and plants can help get buyers quickly, and for higher prices.
Landscaping your garden can increase the cost of the property by about 50%, in some cases. This depends on the location, but an increase is always guaranteed.
Provides Self Satisfaction
The last benefit of the hobby is that it simply provides huge amounts of self-satisfaction. Life comes with a fair share of ups and downs. Some of these aren’t even controllable. With that being said, doing certain things can uplift you and provide you with confidence. Gardening or gardening with kids and family is one such activity. The process is tedious and the results come neither easily nor quickly.
The famous phrase, “As you sow, so shall you reap” takes literal effect here. Once the flowers bloom and the plants bear fruits and vegetables, the entire work will prove worth the time you put in. The amount of self-satisfaction that you will feel, after seeing a beautiful garden that you started, cannot be expressed in words and needs to be experienced for yourself.