I can understand how the thought of kneeling in the hot Australian sun, tilling fertiliser, digging holes and pulling weeds seems like more of a chore than a healthy hobby, but you’d be surprised. There are plenty of reasons to get into the garden and get your green thumb going. For starters, growing your own fruit, veg and herbs can save money on your groceries. That’s an obvious one, but if your place is similar to mine, any attempt to turn what little garden you have into a vegetable patch will surely be ruined by hungry possums! So setting aside the “grow-your-own” benefit to gardening, what are some of the other perks to pruning your own petunias?
Pros for your physical health
Gardening is a great way to get some Vitamin D. Just make sure you slip, slop and slap when you’re outdoors for extended periods! Beyond that, the light labour involved in gardening is a great way to get the heart pumping and burn some calories. It’s certainly not the same as going to the gym, but research has shown that those who garden regularly have a lower risk of developing heart disease and stroke. What’s more, gardening can stave off the onset of dexterity and mobility issues in old age. All that digging, planting, weeding and pruning while maintaining a garden gives you a whole body exercise. Best of all, gardening requires constant maintenance so you’ll probably be gardening long after you’ve gotten out of your underutilised gym membership.
Positive effects on your mental health
There’s something magical about watching life flourish before your eyes. That sounds cliché but it’s so true. There’s a special sense of achievement gained from seeing your floral creations come to life. Gardening is this nexus of creative expression, technical ability and patience. As such, taking up gardening as a hobby can improve your creative thinking and patience, making you less stressed in your day-to-day life.
If we’ve piqued your interest in gardening, but you don’t how to get started, check out this beginner’s guide and these expert tips for beginners. If you still need a bit of convincing, check out this more in-depth look at the benefits of gardening. Hopefully, we’ll spot a few INDEX Consultants at the next Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show.