In line with a piece of writing by Laura Drotleff from Greenhouse Grower Magazine in February, 2016, “Gardening is a stress-buster and offers an ideal break from technology.” She spelled out that whenever our power to center on our technologies reaches up to a saturation point, we become more susceptible to blunders, disruptions, and emotional stress. She affirms this attention fatigue is often reversed by undertaking another form of attention, referred to as “involuntary attention”, as opposed to the time and effort and stress-filled forced attention expected to understand technologies. These replenishing different kinds of attentions are the type we normally use to enjoy nature. For this reason, you will have less stress by gardening.
She goes on to proclaim, “Gardening may be even a more effective stress buster than other leisure activities.” She stated a study done in the Netherlands (as stated by CNN) which adds to our understanding of how much gardening plays a role in our peace and contentment. Multiple students who had just finished a stressful project were then split up into one group that did some recreational gardening and another group that did some recreational reading. The group that gardened were then found to have “lower levels of cortisol, the stress hormone.” Objective evidence that gardening reduces stress!
A great illustration of how gardening helps relieve stress would be the story of my mother. When my father was in his late 70s he had a stroke, which left him in a wheelchair for the remainder of his life and could not tend to his garden (which was legendary). My mother’s life utterly changed from having the role of wife to now having the role of full-time nurse as my father was totally dependent on her. My mother learned to love my father’s garden as it became her retreat as well as a place of solace. Her garden was thought of as holy ground, and she was the new master of it. While she continued to grow the very same vegetables my father grew, she added to the garden her own master’s touch by mixing roses, irises and daisies in between the mounds and rows. After my father died, the garden proceeded to help my mother by providing her the chance to cope, defeat depression, and providing her strength in body, mind and spirit.
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.