From subtle life lessons to the thrill of lining the diner table, there are many benefits of backyard gardening.
Are you thinking of starting a backyard garden? You are not alone.
Some are naturally drawn to the dirt, while others were shoved to backyard gardening during the covid pandemic.
Data from Exploding Topics reveals that thousands turned to their backyard to escape the biting lockdowns with the world at a screeching halt, armed with gloves and shovels.
So, whether you are in it for a thrill or the love of it, this article reveals some benefits of keeping a backyard garden.
Here we go!
Benefits of Backyard Gardening
1 Backyard gardening helps your body fight diseases
Gardening in your backyard exposes you to sunlight.
Your skin uses sunlight to make vitamin D which increases the calcium levels necessary for strong bones and boosts your immune system.
With low vitamin D levels, you are prone to dementia, metabolic syndrome-a pre-diabetic condition for type 2 diabetes, and dementia.
Gardening impacts your health in several positive ways.
2. Gardening is a good exercise.
We do not recommend using mechanical devices like tractors – like they would fit – in your garden for backyard gardening.
Actively involve yourself.
You find yourself pulling out weeds, reaching for various plants and tools, twisting and bending as you work.
All this is physical activity on your body which helps strengthen muscles to help with stamina and stability.
This is why gardening is a good exercise.
3. Gardening provides you with a sense of belonging.
Do you feel alone and you don’t fit, and are looking for an opportunity to socialize?
Or are you struggling to find what to do after your retirement?
I present you with community gardens.
What are community gardens?
Community gardens are a joint project on shared spaces where the participants work together to care for and maintain their gardens and share their harvests. It’s a fun way to engage as you benefit your community.
Benefits of community gardens
They improve the quality of life. How? They bring people in the community together and get them talking in conversations in which ideas for community development come up.
They beautify the neighborhood, especially with flowers in the equation.
These gardens yield nutritious, healthy food, which cuts down on family budgets.
They conserve resources. Instead of every family investing in buying the necessary tools and materials, they need to work on their gardens, the community pools resources and purchase these materials together and share them.
They create an opportunity for recreation, exercise, therapy, and education when people interact and help each other out with different aspects of life. As a result, they rely more on each other and grow together as a community.
Promotes living for a purpose and living above self. Gardeners donate part of their harvests to churches, shelters, and food banks.
They can organize joint dinners as a community, and believe me or not, it’s the little things and beautiful memories we make that we keep with us and make life worth a living.
4. Gardening is a tool of empowerment.
Imagine growing something on your own, and the power of what it becomes is in your hands.
It all comes down to self-esteem.
After successfully caring for a plant and reaping the fruit of your hard work changes how you see yourself.
You start to believe more in your ability to do things and stop letting the world decide what you can or cannot be because you get to a place of knowing who you are.
5. Teaches important life lessons
We all know certain things by head knowledge but don’t realize or understand their implications until we are in situations we can relate to them.
We often hear people make statements like, “you cannot control the weather,” right.
Until you’re in a situation where the weather decides to take a different course from what you anticipated, and then you watch your plants whither or die, and there is nothing you can do to change that course, then you cannot relate to the need people have to be in control.
And that is not all.
Sometimes you pull a crop instead of a weed, frustrating – right? Some pests are too persistent and will not go away despite your efforts.
You can now relate your daily life to this. There is always that thing you cannot control or some that choose to pester you deliberately.
Life is dynamic with an endless list of pressures.
It is in fully knowing who you are and knowing that you are imperfectly perfect.
You can grow in life by taking responsibility for your actions, learning from your mistakes, and deciding to get solutions instead of holding on to the pain you can truly move on and progress.
Gardening can teach you that.
6. Manage eco-anxiety
Eco-anxiety is the guilt and restlessness you get when you feel powerless to do anything about climatic change’s gradual unchecked adverse effects.
Well, there is something you can do.
It is the individual efforts each one of us takes that collectively make a difference.
Backyard gardening can be that effort for you.
How? Mechanical gas-powered devices like tractors that pollute the environment are overrated. Use hand tools
Use drip lines, rain barrels, and mulch to reduce water consumption.
Recycle your organic waste to make compost manure to minimize waste and decrease methane production in dealing with it.
Plant trees that give off oxygen for fresh air and absorb carbon dioxide, in the long run averting effects of global warming.
Use non-plastic biodegradable materials and tools and keep your gardens free from chemicals.
7. Gardening saves you money.
With gardening, you reap a thousandfold or more! Imagine the beauty of sowing one seed of maize, and you reap an ear of whole corn with so many bases on it, no forgetting that one plant can yield more than just one comb.
Moreover, you have the assurance of reaping something even when the season is terrible.
Everyone could do with the extra cash, from consuming the highest quality organic fruits and vegetables straight out of your garden to selling the surplus yields.
You save a lot of money paying for vegetables and fruits highly at grocery stores and also earn income along the way.
You organize a family picnic or day at the amusement park to spend quality time with your loved ones; gardening in your backyard is an activity you can do to connect with your loved ones and make beautiful memories.
Of course, it may require more work than sitting on a merry-go-round.
But the magic of watching your seeds sprout, or the joy of watching your corn unwrap life a present before your eyes, is a feeling you need to experience to understand what I mean genuinely, and who better to share this feeling than with your family?
9. Backyard gardens for research.
Demonstration gardens for research are small, and space in the backyard is a versatile option for the job.
It could teach farmers how to go about a new species on the market, teach children facts like global warming, proper nutrition, or even equip them with skills to apply in their home gardens, teamwork, and other life lessons.
10. Boost the eco-system
You can choose to grow endangered plant species in your backyard as a way to promote their existence, make your garden a certified habitat for wildlife, or plant vegetables and flowers that attract bees-pollinators that are very relevant in crop production.
Whatever you feel you can do, take a stand and do it. Trust me; it has an impact.
Caution – How To Stay Safe When Gardening.
Gardening does not come without its risks.
However, you don’t want to turn your rather fun outdoor escape activity into a panic attack.
It is, therefore, better to be safe than sorry.
Below are a few simple guidelines to keep you safe throughout your gardening process.
- Use products as per package instructions, especially the chemicals, such as pesticides and fertilizers. If wrongly used, they can be dangerous for you and your crops.
- Wear personal protective equipment like gloves, goggles, long clothes that fully cover the body, closed shoes to protect yourself from cuts from sharp objects, and tools
- Use bug spray and sunscreen. Remember, overexposure to sunshine can expose you to risks of skin cancer.
- Attend to your garden in the morning and evening when the sun is calm and healthy.
- Drink a lot of water and sit under a shade, so you stay hydrated.
- Keep an eye out for the children. Remember your working with sharp objects, chemicals, and even the sun can pose a threat.
- Listen to your body. It is so easy to get injured dealing with these backyard adventures and not notice until it’s too late and the injury is contaminated.
- Watch out for your neck and back from over-leaning to tend to plants. Take a breather and stretch out once in a while
- Take a tetanus vaccine once a decade since tetanus lives in the soil.
Gardening gets you from your couch, not considering whatever reasons got you there in the first place, be it depression or just laziness, and gets you to interact with your environment and surrounding positively.
It gets people to have conversations on how to better their community.
The beauty is you enjoy benefits like being physically fit with a healthy heart from the exercise, having a beautiful surrounding, and of course, your reward of fresh fruits and vegetables awaits you after a harvest.
Liked this article?
Check out our article on the Health Benefits Of Gardening And Why You Should Do It.
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