Making the most of your garden whilst we are living under such strange conditions is incredibly important for your wellbeing, both mental and physical. We have all been told by the Government that we can take one period of outdoor exercise for general wellbeing be it Running, Walking or Cycling, the choice is yours. But is that enough? There is no doubt about the benefits of spending time outdoors, so if you are lucky enough to have a private space, this is the time to make use of it.
What are the best things to do? Spring is definitely here now, the last few days have been a wonderful tonic but they might also have made you look at the garden and shake your head at the amount to do. Small steps are the key. You can’t overhaul your whole garden in one session so take it gently and apply some thought whilst you are doing it. Many of us have extra time on our hands so if you want to change things around in the garden, now is a good opportunity. Make a plan, maybe look at some garden design material online – YouTube has a huge amount of information. Maybe even look at a short garden design course – platforms like Skillshare.com offer a lot of short courses for free – you don’t have to take out a subscription.
If a major overhaul is more than you want there are lots of simple, quick ideas you can put in place. Take a step back and look at your planters and pots, rearranging those, maybe even painting them can give a whole new feel to the garden. Half an hour spent gently pulling out a few weeds or pruning an overgrown shrub will not only make you feel better about the garden, it will also increase your wellbeing.
Whilst we all love our families dearly, being forced to spend lots of time together can lead to friction so maybe you can rearrange things in your garden to give small pockets of private space ready for when you need a little respite. Solar lighting is easy to install, planters can provide natural dividers, almost like low walls and can be moved around to change the scenery.
Encouraging wildlife into the garden can give you something interesting to watch, birds can be endlessly entertaining at this time of year as they scurry round building nests and raising young. If you have a pond or water feature you may have fish, frogs, or even newts to watch – frogspawn is appearing everywhere and watching the tadpoles grow into tiny froglets is fascinating. As it warms up there are some beautiful insects – Dragonflies, for example – that are so colourful. Even though a water boatman may not be the prettiest of creatures, watching them skate across the surface of the water is fun. Putting out a few more feeders, and especially fresh water will pay immense dividends.
An investment in some versatile garden furniture will give you an extra room in your living space – many of us are not going to be able to take holidays in the normal way this year so creating a comfortable place to relax outdoors where we can enjoy a drink, a good book or just being in the fresh air will be an investment that will pay off for many years. Being able to eat comfortably outdoors rather than balancing a plate precariously on your knee has definite benefits. Adding a parasol or some form of shade will have the double benefit of a little private space and keeping you safe from the sun in what will hopefully be a good summer.
If ever there was a time to make the most of your garden, this is it. It will enlarge your living space, make you feel physically and mentally better, and best of all help keep you healthy in a safe environment.