Stop what you’re doing. Put your phone away, turn your TV off, write an ‘out of office’ message for your email account. It’s time to get outside for Garden Day.
What is Garden Day?
Garden Day is a nationwide community benefit project. It launches on 12th May 2019, in glorious gardening season and just ahead of Mental Health Awareness Week.
This is a day to really celebrate gardens and the power of plants, regardless of whether your garden is the size of a balcony or a football field, or whether you’re based in an urban landscape or the countryside.
You don’t even have to do any gardening if you don’t want to! Maybe your idea of celebrating the outdoors is to host a BBQ or read a book in a comfy deck chair. It’s up to you.
The benefits of Garden Day
We could all use a chance to relax now and then. It’s important for our wellbeing, especially mental health-wise. But did you know that millennials, specificallly, find it hard to get time to relax? In fact, according to a Garden Day survey, of 53% wished they had more time to go for a walk or sit in a park.
Outdoor spaces and plants are identified as helping to combat loneliness. Almost half of the survey respondents said that gardens, parks and green spaces made them feel less alone.
Across all age groups, the survey findings indicated that people have “a greater sense of positivity and purpose” as a result of spending time in the garden.
5 ways to celebrate your outdoor space
1. Make your own flower crown
Flower crowns are beautiful accessories which can be as extravagent or as simple as you like. They also make a fun craft activity, which can help with mindfulness. Want to find out how to create your own real flower crown for less than £10? Read my how-to here.
2. Take a 10-minute breather
If you’re short on time, but still want to participate in Garden Day, visit your garden or an outdoor space and spend 10 minutes doing nothing.
Maybe your office building has a rooftop garden which you can visit at lunchtime, or there’s a nearby park you can swing by to catch a moment of calm.
A little like meditating, try to clear your mind of busy thoughts. Instead, focus on the sights, sounds and smells of the environment around you.
3. Invite your friends over
If you like to entertain guests, invite some friends over to spend time in your garden. Sit with each other and have a good catch up, or maybe make a meal for everyone to enjoy.
Reading often appears on lists of things to do in the garden, but that’s because it makes such a nice change to reading indoors with unnatural lighting and unwanted distractions!
Grab your shears and gardening gloves, it’s time to give those plants some love. What could be more fitting for Garden Day, hey?
How to get involved online
You could take a photo of yourself doing an activity mentioned above, or something completly different! As long as it gives you joy and has something to with with plants or an outdoor space.
Here’s me wearing my flower crown and explaining a bit more about Garden Day:
Michael has been involved with gardening and plants since he was just five years old. He is a self-professed Plant Geek, and was listed in the Sunday Times top 20 most influential people in the gardening world, thanks to his plant hunter role at Thompson & Morgan.
Michael was responsible for new plant introductions such as the Egg and Chips plant and the FuchsiaBerry and keeps busy travelling the world in search of new plants as well as lecturing worldwide, including stints in Japan. He is very active on social media – so why not give him a follow at @mr_plantgeek or Facebook. You can also listen to The Plant Based Podcast with Michael and co-host Ellen-Mary on iTunes, Spotify and Google.