Ahhh, Springtime! That glorious time of year when everything begins to emerge from their hiding … includingflowering bulbs suddenly appearing from the ground and springing to life brilliant colors. A time of new beginnings; perhaps a garden! After all, life did begin in a garden!
19th century English poet Alfred Austin wrote, “The Glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just on the body, but the soul.” Austin foretold today’s scientific findings about the benefits of gardening. Whether 2 years old or 102, playing in the dirt is a rewarding pastime often handed down to us from previous generations.
So, how do you begin feeding your body and soul? First, you must plan on where you want to start your own personal Eden. Second, you need to prepare the soil; either by tilling the ground or putting all new soil into a garden box. Third, plant whatever makes you happy - flowers, herbs, or vegetables. Finally, nurture your plants and enjoy the rewards!
After creating your garden, you can begin reaping some of the benefits of gardening. Other than the obvious benefits, the Alzheimer’s Association as well as Center for Disease Control & Prevention both express that physical activity, such as gardening, is a great way to help avoid a multitude of life-threatening diseases. Additionally, gardening gives you exposure to Vitamin D, helps to fight stress, and maintains mind-boosting elements.
Sterling Estates Senior Living Communities in Marietta encourage outdoor gardening by providing raised garden beds. This offers Sterling Estates residents a place to grow vegetables, herbs and flowers - a place to enjoy the outdoors and the company of others, all while nurturing plants. They discuss ahead of time what they wish to grow and how to do it. Master Gardeners are invited to give helpful tips and garden talks. Everything needed for gardening is provided - the green space, plants, accessible tools with foam grippers and brightly colored handles, a sitting bench, a workbench complete with sink and hose, and finally accessible pathways for walkers and wheelchairs.