For Somerset Garden Day on 14th May, a special survey of 700 Somerset gardeners has been done to understand how gardens and gardening make them feel. The results are so positive, I thought them worth sharing:
88% of residents have noticed one or more health and well-being benefits from gardening
76% say spending time in their garden helps them to feel happier and more content
61% say spending time in their garden has helped them feel less anxious and stressed
59% identify their gardens as a place where they can switch off and relax
55% of residents believe spending time in their garden has improved their mental health
55% say spending time in their gardens helps them build better relationships with friends and family
42% report feeling happier and more optimistic after spending time in gardens
41% say spending time in their garden helps them to switch off from technology
35% say spending time in their garden helps them to perform better at work
Not surprisingly, given the above, gardens are the place most people feel happiest (34%) - much more so than watching TV (16%), visiting restaurants (13%) or even going to the pub (5%).
"Gardeners and florists are the happiest of all the professions ... nearly twice as happy as people in more prestigious and better paid jobs" Learn more
However, and this will be no surprise to many of you, we spend much more time (20%) gardening than we do relaxing in the garden. Some gardeners even reported spending the equivalent of a month each year planting, weeding and watering. It follows then that almost two thirds (70%) wish they could give more time to relaxing in their gardens.
This all points to the value of Somerset Garden Day - one day when we collectively down tools and enjoy our gardens with friends, neighbours and family.
Whether you're in Somerset or anywhere else in the UK, it's a brilliant idea. If you're anything like me, at this time of year I have a list as long as my arm of jobs to do in the garden. But one day off to relax and enjoy it, when the garden is near or at it's best - you bet!