Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Doctor Is In

   After the wild week on Capitol Hill and the melt down on Wall Street, it’s best to turn off the TV, put down the newspaper and go outside.  American naturalist, John Burroughs stated, ‘I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order’.  This is advice we should all heed.   Many of us find a favorite place outside to sit and get away from the daily stress, finding our gardens to be a wonderful cure-all.  The truth is, there is a great deal of therapeutic benefits in gardens and gardening. 

     Studies have shown that hospital patients who had a view of nature rather than a brick wall complained less, required less pain medication and made faster recoveries.  Plants in an office setting improved worker satisfaction, creativity and productivity.   We all know that landscaping our yard and tending to the grass increases the value of our homes and sometimes it inspires the neighbors to do the same, and so on and so forth.  Residents of areas with more trees and grass reported that they knew their neighbors better, socialized with them more often, had stronger feelings of community, and felt safer and better adjusted.  Trees, greenery and other vegetation make neighborhoods safer and more desirable.  They even play a role in boosting students’ grades and reducing the risk of domestic violence.  As little as 10 minutes spent outside improves attention in children with ADHD:  neighborhoods with more green space improve body mass index of children and youth.  Gardening improves health and happiness, including reducing heart rate and blood pressure. 
     The therapeutic value of a garden can’t be overstated.  Digging, smelling, touching, looking and learning about the workings of the natural world is you connecting to something greater than yourself.
      So the next time you tell someone you’re a ‘Gardener’, you may want to add, Therapist, Social Organizer, Child Advocate and Health Care Provider.  Wow!  I don’t know about you, but I need a bigger business card.


  1. I was very taken with your header photo. It looks a great place to sit and relax. I absolutely agree with you about the benefits of gardening except the time I hurt my back!

  2.'s all GOOD :-) No wonder we all love it so much!

  3. Hi,

    I hope you're having a great week! I saw you wrote about the benefits of gardening here and thought you might be interested in an infographic I helped build. It's about the health, mental and financial benefits of gardening. Here's the infographic.

    I'm biased, but I think it's very cool! If you think your readers would like it too, please feel free to use it on Gardening Under The Influence. There's code at the bottom of our post that makes it super easy to post on your blog. It's free to use, we love sharing our content! If you have any questions about posting it, let me know and I'll try to help. If you do decide to post it, please let me know : )