Research Discovers Spending Time In The Garden Boosts Mental Health

Spending time in the garden makes a massive difference in your overall wellbeing and longevity according to research by the Royal Horticultural Society – a UK-based based charity. Investigators studied more than 8,000 people between 2009 and 2016 following their daily gardening habits. They found that those who spent more time in the garden had better overall psychological and physical wellbeing. 

The findings were dramatic. The research indicates that the difference in health outcomes between the people who spent the most time in their gardens compared to the least was the same size as the difference of living in a wealthy area compared to a poor one. 

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The findings suggest, therefore, that we should all be looking for ways to open up our gardens and spend more time in them. We should view our outdoor spaces as both beautiful places to spend time and tools for improving our mental health. Like exercise, the areas around our homes are places that can potentially alter our neurochemistry and change the way that we feel. 

People With Access To Private Gardens More Likely To Report Psychological Wellbeing

The study also found that even people with access to private gardens were much more likely to be in good psychological health. Those who could have a yard or private space to themselves reported feeling much happier to the researchers. 

What’s more, the evidence suggests that merely having a garden is often sufficient to confer the benefits, not the process of gardening itself. Thus, people with an outdoor space beside their home were much more likely to experience the health and wellbeing benefits compared to those who didn’t. 

The lead researcher on the project suggested that the findings were indicative of the fact that people need to feel close to nature to have a sense of contentment. Gardens might have a crucial role to play in issues of public health she said. 

How To Spend More Time In The Garden

So, while this research is interesting, it doesn’t answer the practical question of how to spend more time in the garden. We’d all like to be outside as much as possible, but often, it’s not possible. So what can we do? 

Let’s take a look. 

Purchase A Laptop

If you can work from home, purchasing a laptop can be one of the best things you do to increase the amount of time that you spend in the garden. You can connect to the internet, take it out to the garden, and then spend all day among the flowers and the birds, weather permitting. 

Install Decking

Getting deck builders to install decking is another way to make your garden spaces more practical. Having somewhere off the grass to place garden furniture can encourage you to use your garden as an entertainment space. 

Build A Garden Room

A garden room is simply a room in your home that connects the garden to your indoor space, encouraging you to use both. 

Most modern garden rooms have sliding doors that act as a kind of interface between your indoor and outdoor spaces. But you can do it in other ways, such as bi-folding doors. 

Install A Summer House

In certain parts of the world, it’s not warm enough to spend time outdoors year-round. Spending time on your patio isn’t fun when it’s freezing cold. 

The obvious solution to this problem is a summer house – a strange name for something you’ll use in the colder months of the year. And because it provides shelter, you can place indoor furniture inside, making sitting in it more comfortable. 

Get A Vegetable Patch

Vegetable patches offer two advantages. First, they let you grow tasty organic food. And secondly, they force you to get out into the garden and take care of them. 

Your onions and leeks can become a real source of focus that takes your mind off other things. When you’re digging up soil and planting bulbs, you’re not thinking about all the things that affect your wellbeing. It’s a healthy physical activity that takes your mind off things and allows you to thrive. 

Subscribe To A Gardening Magazine

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Finally, subscribing to a gardening magazine is something that can inspire you to get out into the garden and create something beautiful. Editors introduce you to essential concepts, such as when you should plant bulbs and how you should arrange your beds. You’ll also learn practical things, such as how to weed and the tools you’ll need to keep your yard looking good all year long. 

This is a collaborative post.

In Health,

Melinda

16 comments

    1. It will feel good when you can just be around some green space. Can you plant a tomato or some type of cold weather plant? I know some types of ornamental cabbage plants do well in winter. Probably not real cold weather but early winter. Anything will help. Thanks for commenting and have a great evening.

      Liked by 1 person

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