I would be something of a fraud if I didn’t tell you that throughout my life I have absolutely loathed gardening, but this all changed when I brought my family to Alberta, Canada from the USA 5 years ago. At that time we had to borrow some money from a lender to renovate the house and whilst the garden looked atrocious, it just wasn’t at the top of our priority list. Here in Alberta the homes around us have beautiful gardens and I did used to feel some shame when I looked out of my bedroom window to see the state of ours. As unhappy as I was, the inside of the house had to take priority.
I met Travis Cadman in my first week of living here, he is a professional gardener and an all round nice guy. I spoke to Travis about my garden woes and being the great man that he is, he offered to help me get it cleaned up a little. I figured that this couldn’t do any harm and although I have never done a minute of work in a garden before, I stepped up to the challenge. I absolutely fell in love with gardening and here are just some of the benefits which I now count on when I manage to get outside.
I honestly thought that gardening would be stressful but as it happens it has the completely opposite effect for me. I have quite a stressful job working with numbers and so one of my greatest pleasures when I get home is to greet the family, have a shower and then get out into the garden. Gardening is so calming and relaxing that it gets rid of my stress and anxiety and makes me a far happier person.
I get a real pride when I look at the garden and know that it was my handiwork which helped it to look like that, plus the additional pair of expert hands which Travis lent me! Whenever the kids are out playing or whenever we have guests over for a barbecue, I feel massive pride that I created this beautiful outdoors space.
Everyone should have a project in their lives, it gives great focus and it gives you something to concentrate on. For me, somewhat surprisingly, my project would turn out to be our garden and I absolutely love it. What I like in particular is that the job is never complete, there is always something new to plan for, a new addition to try and new plants to look after.
Gardening is straight up good for your health, being outdoors means that you are breathing in fresh air and the physical exertion of being out in the garden is just so beneficial for me. I have lost weight since I have been gardening every day and to be honest my mental and physical health have improved greatly.
Even if you don’t think you’ll like it, I’d say give gardening a try.