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Gardening as a Therapeutic Intervention in Mental Health

Garden Your Way to Better Health

It’s no secret that many Americans feel depressed, anxious, and out of shape. Statistics tell us that anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S. InGardening as a Therapeutic Intervention in Mental Health addition, more than 75% of Americans don’t get enough exercise.

These numbers show that people in the U.S, need some assistance with physical and mental health. What is one surprising hobby that can help? Gardening.


The Physical Benefits of Gardening

You can’t tend a garden from the couch or while sitting at your computer. Gardening is physical labor — it gets you up and moving. You can burn hundreds of calories per hour weeding, raking, and planting. These activities contribute to the recommended 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week.

It’s not surprising that gardening helps you eat healthier, too. Growing your own produce means you have vitamin-packed foods right in your backyard or on your patio.

You can reduce hunger and gain energy by eating fruits and vegetables. Try reaching for a fresh-picked fruit or vegetable from your garden instead of a sugary snack or bag of chips. If you need to lose weight, gardening packs a double punch — it provides both exercise and healthy food.

Spending time in the sun gives you a vitamin D boost, too. When you are indoors most of the day, it deprives your body of the outdoor exposure required to manufacture the “sunshine vitamin.” Just remember not to overdo it — after a few minutes in the sun, you’ll need sunscreen, sunglasses, and maybe a wide-brimmed hat.

Gardening is not only for the grown-ups, but it can also help the Child’s Development, if you want to read more, click here


The Mental Benefits of Gardening

Tending a garden is a stress-reducing activity. According to studies, gardening can support people who have experienced trauma. It helps them work past recovery barriers and improves their mental state.

Cultivating plants helps people:

  • Channel their mental energy

  • Experience joy and consolation

  • Turn stressful feelings into positive ones

  • Have the chance to nurture a living thing and help it grow

Tending your garden is an excellent opportunity to be mindful. You are not sitting at a keyboard when you’re in your garden. You are not making a grocery list, and you’re also not lying in bed stewing about all the things you need to do. Instead, you’re living in the moment.

Feeling the soil between your fingers, looking at the colorful plants you grow, and performing repetitive activities like trimming and digging — these exercises take you away from the everyday hustle and connect you to the earth.

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How To Start a Garden

Are you new to gardening? That’s not a problem. A few steps can get you started:

  1. Decide what you’d like to grow. Choose fruits and vegetables you enjoy that grow well in your area.

  2. Choose a location. You’ll need adequate sun exposure for your crops. You may also need to protect the area from wildlife looking for a snack. Do you lack space? Consider containers or vertical gardening.

  3. Test your soil to understand its makeup and ensure it supports your plants.

  4. Plan your garden while considering space between plants and optimal planting time.

  5. Once your crops are growing, plan to spend time nurturing them. You’ll need to watch for weeds, provide adequate water and fertilizer, and trim or support plants as they grow.

  6. Finally, enjoy your hard work by harvesting, eating, and sharing your produce.

Here are some more tips for killer sub-urban farm


Therapeutic Gardening Summary

Gardening is a mood-boosting, exercise-inducing, and food-providing activity many can enjoy. If you’d like to get healthier, consider growing a garden.

I wish you success!

If you have additional questions, please write to me in the comment below

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