It's human nature to cultivate health and harmony through an attraction or kinship to nature. After all, it all 'began' in a garden, didn't it? The therapeutic benefits of gardening have been used for decades and continue to become more widely used not only on an individual basis, but also as well documented formal programs, an 'official' therapy called Horticulture Therapy. Horticulture therapy recognizes and uses the physical, mental and spiritual benefits of gardening to conduct programs in therapy and rehabilitation of patients, from physically disabled, Alzheimer's and special needs patients to prison inmates.
Things You Will NeedA garden or private retreat area
Benefits of using garden therapy to nurture you PHYSICALLY: You have the option to plant vegetables, fruits, herbs, spices or whatever you choose, to lead a healthier life, by eating smarter and reaping bounties that serve as medicinal options for relief of ailments and disorders. It also is great exercise for the body. Many people don't realize that gardening burns more calories than many other forms of exercise. You will also sleep much better at night, which is a health-friendly benefit.
Benefits of using garden therapy to nurture you MENTALLY: Gardening mentally harvests your health, offering an environment of relaxation and enjoyment that has been proven to reduce daily stress build-up, which in turn lowers blood pressure and reduces depression tendencies. All of this leads to a peace of mind that is 'natural', giving us a better understanding of self and self worth.
Benefits of using garden therapy to nurture you SOCIALLY: When you stop to think about it, we use items from our gardens as an offering to connect with others; flowers as offerings of condolences, celebrations, or nurturing friendship. And what better activity, no matter who's in need of some gentle therapy, than sharing time in the garden with friends and family for a barbecue, potluck, or intimate garden party. Maintaining and nurturing a garden also gives you a chance to share your accomplishments with others, from growing your own food, to your designing abilities and creative touches, which in turn stimulates your self-esteem.
Benefits of using garden therapy to nurture you SPIRITUALLY: Humans possess an attraction or kinship to nature. Escaping to your garden retreat can offer you a safe haven, your outdoor sanctuary to escape from the outside world with some time alone to reflect, gather your thoughts, nurture feelings of appreciation and build a more solid, extraordinary partnership with nature and its creator.
On an individual basis, the healing aspects of a garden and its bounty can nurture your health and well-being through the following steps, Physically, Mentally, Socially and Spiritually. And so goes the saying... "We reap what we sow".