As we’re edging ever closer to spring (hooray!), the mornings are getting lighter, which means those wintery moods become lighter too!  That period from the end of December to the beginning of spring is usually a subdued one for most.  There are a couple of reasons for this - for one, the weather is a little unpredictable (and as such, keeps us indoors) and then there is the inevitable beginning-of-year-lack-of-funds, of course!

Usually at this time of year, we alleviate those post-Christmas blues by getting out, socialising with friends, family, going on holiday, etc., however with the presence of COVID again this year and the ensuing lockdown, home has become a much smaller space – the only space we can be in.  It doesn’t mean it can’t be fun though.

In December, preparing for Christmas takes up most of your time, with so much energy going into building one perfect day.  That big day soon vanishes in a haze, until the New Year celebrations… only to go quiet again.  With Christmas done, dusted and boxed away for another year, why not use your time and energy organising the outdoor decorations?  Or in other words, your garden.

Doing it in the rain won’t be a great deal of fun (for some) however when you get a decent day, spending it in your garden - and yes, this means doing the gardening - can be very rewarding.  Your garden doesn’t have to be the size of a country pile to get any joy from it.  Some plants/seeds can thrive in the tiniest of spaces, or even in garden planters if space is limited.  This makes gardening accessible to all.

If you get it right, your garden (however big or small it is) will become a haven for birds, bees, butterflies and other wildlife, but then you’ll already know that as it’s all there for you to see – just look out of your window and see how many birds you can spot!  It will also become a haven for you too.  After a busy week a work with the noise of the commute and the sound of telephones ringing, we sometimes forget how relaxing it is to hear and see things that we’d usually take for granted like the birds singing and they can be great fun to watch while you’re working too!

With the stresses and strains of everyday life and more opportunity than ever to spend time at home, not all will realise the benefits to body and mind… but you should do, really you should:

  • Stress relief – put down your mobile phone for a few hours! Nature is a proven stress reliever and spending time in your garden, looking after those lovely plants, is not only rewarding, but calming too.
  • Feeling good? Feel better.  Gardening has been linked to better moods, leading to a better outlook in life and what’s more, it gives a sense of hope in the form of the reward at the end.
  • Let’s get physical. If you’ve spent enough days tidying the garden you’ll know only too well how much your bones will feel it the following day!  Yes – this is a big one!  Gardening reduces calories too.  Rated as moderate-intensity exercise, did you know you can burn in excess of 300 calories just doing a bit of light gardening?
  • Speaking of those bones, whether you see it in the sky of not, being out in the open air beneath the sun makes your body generate more Vitamin D, making those bones stronger. Vitamin D is also fabulous for building up a strong immune system and who doesn’t want one of those?
  • Lower that blood pressure! Yes, spend enough time out there and you can decrease high blood-pressure levels.

With lockdown still underway and spring fast approaching, there’s never been a better time to dust off those wellies, get those scruffs on and get the kettle ready.  It will be hard work at first (think of those calories), but very rewarding and what’s more, it’s free!

Looking for a Gardeners Gift Box?  We have plenty in our range to keep those green fingers happy...

February 14, 2021 — Julie Selby