How Gardening Improves Your Health
My flower garden
Health Benefits of Gardening.
I love being outside and playing in the dirt. Well maybe not just the dirt but my yard. I love flowers, vegetables, trees, you name it. If it grows and produces something I can use or is esthetically useful I love it.
Studies have actually been done that show a positive connection between our health and exposure to soil as we plant, excluding any harmful chemicals we might be using.
Gardening has a way of getting us in touch with our inner child and relaxes us, slows our pulse and lowers our blood pressure. It can even be a way of exercising depending the intensity of our work
Gardening can lower your pulse rate, your blood pressure, keep you limber, gets you outside and gives you fresh air. It increases the amount of Vitamin D you are receiving from the sun and often times it is a very good form of weight bearing exercise that helps you entire cardiovascular system and your bones. You can feel your mood lifting as you begin to commune with nature.
And then you begin to reap the fruits of your work when your flowers bloom or your vegetables begin to grow.
A study done in the Netherlands proved that it decreased stress by asking 2 groups of people to either read or garden . Those that gardened actually felt more relaxed and their cortisol level was lower.
Other studies have shown that gardening for people in their 70 and 80's decreased dementia symptoms by 37 to 47%
I find that gardening is something I want to do eagerly and don't dread as I do my exercise class.
A landmark study by Robert S. Ulrich at Texas A&M found that gallbladder patients looking out on trees actually had less pain and were discharged earlier that those that did not.
My Organic Garden
Organic Gardening and Health
Just this summer I started my first organic garden. Little did I know that is was not quite as easy as I thought. I have learned so much over the years. I know how to grow many flowers. How to trim a rose bush, when to cut back my azaleas and what to fertilize them with. I love cutting flowers in the garden and creating all kinds of arrangements. Aside from my new vegetable garden I am now working on succulents and I love the beauty and ease at which they grow. I have wanted a succulent wreath for quite a while but that is another story.
My organic garden started out very well. I was so excited when I first checked it and discovered a beautiful yellow squash and several green cucumbers. Next came the gorgeous purple eggplant. The tomatoes started slow but have now begun to take off.
My husband helped me tweak the watering by putting a broken shovel in front of our sprinkler which directed the water to the garden.
Everything appeared to be going well. Lots of cucumbers and a few squash until one day I noticed some snails under the squash . As I looked around the ground I found hundred of snails and began to manually remove them
I then went to the computer and my garden books and found snails don't like pine bark and I could also spray a mixture of half ammonia and half water to deter the critters.
It was not just snails though . I also found a green caterpillar in my squash . Now the battle is on. Every few days i recheck and find a few snails. They have slowed down on the squash but are appearing on the cucumbers. I have removed all the low branches of the tomatoes and any dead or decaying leaves on the other vegetables. I even continue to spray with the ammonia mixture adding a little green soap. My husband purchased some pine bark and put t under all my vegetables.
How to make a Greenhouse for $17.50!!!!
My Dad's Fig Trees
I am not sure how much longer my garden will last but I do know next year I will definitely need to do more research and more tweaking. One thing that has kept me happy has been my Dad's fig trees. Whenever I visit my sister I am rewarded with a huge bagful and return home to work on my newest garden project, making fig preserves. Yes I love to be outside.
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