I’m a big fan of pottering in my greenhouse, nurturing seedlings and getting lost in the moment. For me it’s very relaxing and can provide a welcome relief from a busy life, and provide some time for mindful contemplation. But gardening doesn’t have be a solitary affair, for the big jobs in our garden, it’s always much better when MOH is involved, but it can be more than that too. Gardens and gardening can bring people together to share their experiences, and on allotments also the crops and flowers they grow.
Togetherness too has great value for our mental wellbeing, relieves boredom and provides social contact. Gardening clubs or events at the local garden centre are a good place to look for events that bring people together. But more community gardens are popping up around the country too, providing the opportunity for people to harden together, and it’s no wonder gardening is recommended for therapy and rehabilitation by health professionals.
Whether you’re swapping seeds, seedlings and spare plants - at work we have an online community for just this, trying to offload a glut of courgettes, or as in my previous job a colleague’s Bramley apples (yes please!), or asking for help to solve problems, sharing our love and knowledge of gardening helps us all grow together (and yes, pun intended)
Volunteer your gardening skills
Many of the finest gardens in the country welcome volunteers who can help in their gardens, if this is something you’re interested in, these links are a good starting point:
The gift of growing
Plants make a great gift, and are more sustainable than cut flowers. This month garden centres and nurseries are full of beautiful plants with seasonal colour, fruits and berries - yes, summer is on its way out for another year.
Look out for:
Long-flowering Alstroemeria (pictured above)
Pansies and violas
Bluebeard and Chinese Plumbago - both blue plants, which I’m sure you’ll recognise.