Inspiration and tips to help bring your garden visions to life.
Gardening and Garden Therapy
Gardens are good for the soul. They enable an immediate and intimate connection to nature. Through gardening one can find peace and centre – gardeners are great at ‘switching off’; at immersing themselves body, mind and soul in the other – beyond themselves. Gardeners find flow. Gardens are living, dependent systems that require the love and support of a gardener. They are easier to manage than children, but more challenging then many novices anticipate when they begin the journey. If you have a vision for a garden – make a start; if you don’t know where to start – ask for help, but take that step. It’s easier than you think – buy a plant, love it (a little), make sure it has light, water and drainage and see what happens. Find your connection with nature, feel the soil beneath your fingers, stop to smell the roses and before you know it, you’ll see what I mean when I say ‘gardening is good for the soul’.
Gardening for beginners...
I recommend that beginners to the gardening project start with succulents. These hardy, yet sculpturally spectacular plants, thrive on neglect. They are the plants with training wheels. Some are more carefree than others, but all of them (providing you don’t kill them with over-watering), will grow and flower and give you quite the spectacle. They can be potted together in fantastic displays and creative designs or placed as specimen pieces – living art! If your are beginning your journey into gardens (whether indoor or outdoor), try a succulent – build your success. Check my blog for a quick tutorial on how to make a succulent garden in under 10 minutes. https://life-styled-tasmania.com.au/making-a-ten-minute-succulent-planter/
Gardening for those already skilled up...
For the experienced gardner, you already know the mantra ‘right plant, right place’ – but we do like to challenge ourselves all the same! Can I get my frost sensitive plants through a Tasmanian winter? Well, that is still a work in progress -I’ll let you know in October!
Gardeners are part of a sustainable future. They are terraformers, designers and scientists all rolled into committed hobbyists. We examine colour palettes and the impact of insecticide on pollinators. Gardeners are the great recyclers – if it can be reused, repurposed and regenerated – we will find a way. Whether its compost heaps, worm farms or garden features, which we lovingly call ‘art’; if we can find a way to keep something in the garden – we will.
There is something to be said for growing your own vegetables, fruit or flowers; for creating a landscape that is your paradise. A place where there is always more to do; there are never enough plants and you can lose yourself for half a day as easily as a minute. A garden though, doesn’t have to be large, it doesn’t have to be outdoors and it certainly, doesn’t have to be in the ground – the fundamental component of a garden is plants – and you only need start with one!
Garden or horticultural therapy is a practice based on using gardening and other horticultural practices to improve physical and mental well-being. When you are training to become a horticultural therapist, you must explore the nature of gardening, health care and support services and your own capacity to provide therapy for others. Horticultural therapy ranges from small gardens and workshops to an entire way of operating in green spaces. My passion is to incorporate skills from style, design, education and horticultural therapy into a nice neat process that I’m calling garden therapy.
There are no excuses not to try your hand at a garden. Garden therapy is the solution to a great many things: switching off, getting fresh air, being more sustainable, learning new skills, being self-sufficient, greening your world, providing habitat for wildlife, exercise, building resistance to micro-organisms, connecting with neighbours and communities, obtaining organic fresh produce and finding your own success. So get your hands dirty, find your style and dig in!